The United States is going through an addiction crisis, with painkiller and opioid abuse at the top of the list. In the past few years, the number of drug overdoses has skyrocketed. More people died in 2015 from drug overdoses than gun homicides and car crashes combined.
The government has placed regulations on opioid prescriptions, but for many, the issue isn’t preventing the addiction, it’s getting off the drug entirely. Addiction is painful for both the user and their loved ones and, as much as a user may want to quit, the symptoms of withdrawal are often so severe that they will do anything to stop the pain.
In recent years, major treatment facilities, such as the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, have switched over to medically assisted treatment, or MAT therapy, for a painkiller and opioid addiction. However, for a long time, prescribing medication to treat drug addiction was considered taboo. It seemed like a bad idea to treat drug addiction with more drugs.
Although they don’t cure addiction, they can play a major role in the recovery process by seriously tempering cravings and the effects of withdrawal. In certain cases, withdrawals from opioid can become life-threatening.
So, what is medication assisted treatment? According to the FDA, “Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is the use of medications in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, which is effective in the treatment of opioid use disorders (OUD) and can help some people to sustain recovery.”
There are a couple different methods of medication assisted therapy. Some focus on reverting brain chemistry to pre-addiction levels, some prevent you from being able to ever get high, some simply stop the withdrawal symptoms. However, in general, MAT treatment gives people the power to fully focus on their mental, emotional, and physical recovery.
It’s a long road to recovery, but the view from the other side is incredible. It’s a life of a healthy body and a healthy family. A life worth living for. If you need addiction treatment, contact us today.