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Medication Assisted Treatment Program

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a person thrives after their medication assisted treatment programPeople in the treatment community often display strong feelings regarding the issue of suboxone maintenance. Understandably so. The idea of using narcotic medications to treat an addiction problem seems almost counter-intuitive. But relatively speaking, the scientific community only recognized chemical addiction as a medical disease within the last 50 years. So we should not be surprised that treatment methods are still evolving alongside growing years of research and treatment results. That research continues pointing toward the success of a medication-assisted treatment program like that offered through New Start Recovery.

What Is Medication-Assisted Treatment?

Sometimes referred to as Suboxone maintenance, medication-assisted treatment (MAT) combines the use of FDA-approved medications with counseling and behavioral therapies. This provides a “whole-patient” approach to the treatment of opiate use disorders. The most common suboxone maintenance programs use:

Naltrexone

Known by the brand name VIVITROL, this medication blocks opiate effects and decreases the desire to take opiates. It is also used to treat alcohol abuse. It is taken as an injection or in pill form.

Suboxone

Active ingredients buprenorphine and naloxone. It is used to treat opiate addiction and withdrawal symptoms and is typically administered via sublingual film (dissolving under the tongue). Because it poses some risk for addiction and dependence, it is strictly administered, and clients are tightly monitored.

Sublocade

Extended-release buprenorphine using propriety Atrigel technology. Monthly abdominal injection. Low risk for addiction due to controlled administration method.

Perhaps the most well-known MAT medication is Methadone, used for those recovering from long-term heroin addiction. Here at New Start Recovery, we do not offer this form of MAT but can still accommodate those struggling with heroin addiction and looking to heal.

Naltrexone Vs. Buprenorphine-based Treatments

MAT options are guided on a case-by-case basis through experienced clinicians. Each client’s treatment regimen will be different. But two basic paths exist for clients at New Start Recovery: naltrexone or a buprenorphine-based treatment.

Naltrexone (Revia, Vivitrol)

Naltrexone blocks the euphoric and sedative effects of opiates such as heroin and oxycodone. It is non-narcotic and non-habit forming. We recommend naltrexone over buprenorphine-based medications for most patients.

Buprenorphine (Suboxone and Sublocade)

Buprenorphine is an opiate agonist used in an office-based setting. It does have narcotic properties, so extended maintenance requires altered forms like Suboxone (contains naloxone) and Sublocade (monthly extended-release injection).

Learn More About Our Medication-Assisted Treatment Program at New Star Recovery

Ultimately, clinicians regiment suboxone maintenance on an individual basis. Medication-assisted treatment isn’t right for everyone. Some find it to be a distraction from recovery. But the journey of recovery is more about building a new lifestyle and coping techniques through therapy. And MAT helps put certain people on the right track. We encourage any individuals interested in MAT to call our addiction counselors 24/7 for a free case assessment at 833.433.0448.