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The Benefits of Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction

Since 1949, the 12-step program developed by Alcoholics Anonymous has been the dominant way we think about facing and fighting addiction. Many people have successfully used this community- and willpower-based approach to escaping addiction. However, countless others have tried it, and relapsed. With the powerful hold that opioid addiction has on so many people in America, it’s time to face addiction with an equally powerful—and proven—method: medication-assisted treatment (or MAT).

MAT is the practice of using drugs like suboxone and subutex to help people dependent on painkillers gradually ease themselves off their addiction. While these treatments have been available for many years, there is a stigma to relying on these medications to help fight addiction rather than the traditional willpower and community approach of a 12-step program. Here are five benefits to using an MAT approach to ending opioid dependency:


    1. MAT is proven to have better results than conventional programs alone.

First, there’s no reason why an MAT approach to fighting addiction can’t work alongside a 12-step program. Rehab centers across the US encourage patients to join 12-step programs, and many of their patients also rely on MAT to help with their addiction. Second, the truth is, MAT programs have been proven to reduce the all-cause mortality rate by 50% or more among addiction patients. This makes MAT programs an important tool to fight opioid addiction.


    2. MAT stops withdrawal symptoms so patients can live a normal life.

When people dependent on opioids try to quit, the pains of withdrawal are often intense and debilitating. This can make escaping addiction nearly impossible. MAT drugs like buprenorphine work by stopping the symptoms of opioid withdrawal, making it easier for patients to live a normal life while they wean themselves off of painkillers. This significantly reduces the odds that an addiction patient will relapse.



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    3. MAT is flexible, allowing medication to be taken at home or in a clinic

MAT programs are not one-size-fits-all. Instead patients may receive the drugs inside a specialized treatment center, or at a pharmacy that allows the patient to take part in the MAT program in their own homes. This added flexibility makes it much easier to continue a normal life while taking part in a proven system to eliminate opioid dependency.


    4. MAT offers multiple drugs (like suboxone and buprenorphine) to find what works for you

Older MAT drugs like methadone required regular visits to a clinic, but newer MAT medicines like buprenorphine can be taken to a patient’s home and consumed on a once- or twice-a-day schedule. There is also a medicine called vivitrol that can be taken once a month after patients have completely detoxed. Because not all MAT programs work for everyone, it is helpful to have multiple options to find what’s best.


    5. It’s easy to find an MAT/suboxone provider near you

There are MAT providers across the country, so it’s easy to find a clinic or physician near you. To find MAT providers in your town or city, start here on Buprenorphine-Doctors.com.com or visit SubstanceRehabCenter.com

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What is Buprenorphine?
 Buprenorphine is an FDA approved opioid addiction treatment. Currently Subutex® & Suboxone® are the only Buprenorphine medications approved by the FDA. Buprenorphine itself is opioid itself, but the maximal effects are less than other more dangerous opioid agonist like methadone and herion. By producing enough agonist, individuals taking Buprenophine that have become addicted to other opioids are able to discontinue abuse with minimized withdrawl side-effects. In 1965, K.W. Bentley discovered the class of compounds synthesized from an alkaloid of thebaine, the opium poppy plant, known as Papaver somniferum. Among these semi-synthetic compounds is Buprenorphine - the first in a series of opioid agonists. Many were more than 1000 times more effective than the analgesic, morphine. In the 1980s, Reckitt & Colman, today known as Reckitt Benckiser, introduced Buprenorphine hydrochloride for sale. Buprenorphine, an analgesic, was first made in sublingual tablets of 0.2 mg (Temgesic). It was also made as an injectable of 0.3 mg/ml (Buprenex). Read More...

What is Suboxone®?
 Suboxone® is the first narcotic drug available for prescription from a doctor's office for use in the treatment of opioid dependence under the Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 or DATA 2000. The primary active ingredient in Suboxone is Buprenorphine, which itself is a partial opioid agonist. This means the the opioid effects and withdrawal symptoms from Buprenorphine are less than other full opioid agonists such as heroin, methadone, morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, and others. Suboxone, taken as sublingual tablets or "under the tongue", has been shown to help in suppressing opioid withdrawal symptoms, decrease illicit opioid cravings and use, and under the correct supervision can help with overcoming an opioid dependence. Suboxone comes in 2mg and 8mg sizes of sublingual tablet form. Suboxone contains naloxone, which blocks the effects of medicines and drugs like methadone, morphine, and heroin. This is added to prevent people from injecting Suboxone and improper use of the medication. Injecting naloxone can cause withdrawal symptoms. Suboxone is the most commonly prescribed medication and given to patients during the maintenance phase of treatment. Subutex is typically given during the first couple of treatment. Because Suboxone has a lower potential for overdose and abuse, unlike methadone, Certified Doctors are able to prescribe take home supplies of Suboxone in certain circumstances. Read More...

The Benefits of Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction
 Since 1949, the 12-step program developed by Alcoholics Anonymous has been the dominant way we think about facing and fighting addiction. Many people have successfully used this community- and willpower-based approach to escaping addiction. However, countless others have tried it, and relapsed. With the powerful hold that opioid addiction has on so many people in America, it’s time to face addiction with an equally powerful—and proven—method: medication-assisted treatment (or MAT). MAT is the practice of using drugs like suboxone and subutex to help people dependent on painkillers gradually ease themselves off their addiction. While these treatments have been available for many years, there is a stigma to relying on these medications to help fight addiction rather than the traditional willpower and community approach of a 12-step program. Here are five benefits to using an MAT approach to ending opioid dependency:
1. MAT is proven to have better results than conventional programs alone.
2. MAT stops withdrawal symptoms so patients can live a normal life.
3. MAT is flexible, allowing medication to be taken at home or in a clinic
4. MAT offers multiple drugs (like suboxone and buprenorphine) to find what works for you
5. It’s easy to find an MAT/suboxone provider near you Read More...