Methadone Detox Center
When it comes to drug addiction, admitting, or even realizing you have a problem, can be a difficult thing. With an addiction to opiates such as heroin or morphine, generally pharmaceuticals are used to subdue the effects of withdrawal. One of the most used and studied methods to break an addiction to opiates is to use the treatment called methadone maintenance treatment in which the drug methadone replaces the heroin. Methadone, while still an addictive substance, can be more readily controlled and is much safer that using heroin intravenously.
Opiatessuch as heroin, codeine and morphine are very addictive drugs. When a person enters a drug treatment program with an heroin or painkiller addiction it is common to prescribe a synthetic opiate called methadone. Methadone binds to the same opioid receptors that heroin, and morphine do which is methadone breaks your dependence on the drugs. When first undergoing methadone detox, the first thing done is to determine the addicts required dosage. First the patient is given 30 mg which is then increased by 5 mg a day until the addict no longer has withdrawal symptoms. Once the appropriate dosage is reached the addict can begin therapy sessions and gradually reduce the amount of methadone required. While it is a long process, methadone treatment has been the most successful treatmenttype of people addicted to opiates. A similar procedure called suboxone treatment uses a similar but weaker drug to remove the cravings for heroin or painkillers.
Methadone isn't a miracle drug however, with some addicts reporting that methadone is even harder to quit than heroin is. Because methadone is slower to act than other opiates and lasts longer, it is easier to overdose. When a person takes methadone and doesn't feel the slow-acting drug working in beginning they may be inclined to take more, causing life-threatening changes in breathing and heart beat. First time abusers of methadone are also in danger of overdosing if they take the same dosage an addict would take. Since its discovery in the 1930's, methadone has been used in the treatment of millions of patients, both for its painkilling effect and for opiate drug rehab. Every year roughly 20% of the opiate addicts are on a methadone maintenance treatment, around 20% of the total opiate abusers.
Some heroin treatment programs employ the use of methadone in treating addiction to heroin.