MAT Program
MAT Program

Medication Assisted Treatment for Addiction

There are a lot of common misconceptions around medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for addiction. Many still believe MAT simply substitutes one drug for another.

That is just simply not the case.

Harmony Place is licensed to offer medication-assisted treatment during the detox stage of treatment. Continue reading to learn all about what to expect in MAT here.

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Did you know MAT is actually used to help relieve the withdrawal symptoms and reduce the psychological cravings caused by the chemical imbalances in the body?

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What is MAT?

What Is Medication Assisted Treatment?

Harmony Place doesn’t function as a stereotypical methadone or Suboxone clinic. In cases like those, the drug itself is the main, or only, form of treatment, and clients are often required to return to the clinic every day to get their next dose. This is not a sound long-term strategy.

In MAT, any medications dispensed are just one piece of the larger puzzle of addiction treatment. The medication is used in conjunction with other forms of clinical, evidence-based and holistic therapy.

If a client must be prescribed a certain medication, our physicians only do so thoughtfully and as needed. Clients who are place on a detox medication regimen are usually tapered off the drug when it is safe to do so.

Prescribing medication during detox is only done to specifically treat the harsher symptoms of withdrawal – not to simply replace the client’s original addiction with a slightly less risky drug. After all, people rely on medication to manage other chronic conditions. Since addiction is a disease, it makes sense to retain the option to use medication when necessary.

8 Things to Know About Drug Withdrawal and Detox

Being armed with the knowledge of drug detoxification and the withdrawal process can help you be prepared to take the first step of getting sober. Here are eight things to remember regarding drug and alcohol detox treatment:

  1. Drug detox must be completed before moving on to drug rehab. You must be free from all drug toxins in order to receive effective treatment and counseling.
  2. Detox is only one part of the recovery process. Many believe that detox is all that’s required for recovery. This simply isn’t the case. Drug detox is just the first step in the ongoing process of breaking the cycle of drug addiction.
  3. Detox is challenging. Your body will crave the drug, and you will likely experience physical symptoms like headaches, nausea, chills and fever.
  4. There is no set amount of time for detox. Every individual is different when it comes to detox. For some, it takes two to three days to complete. For others, it can be up to a week or longer.
  5. Your tolerance for the drug will increase if you return to it after detoxification. Your dependence and craving for it will increase, too.
  6. Your privacy is very important during detox. You may exhibit behaviors that you don’t want to share with others. Within our detox program, you will be in a safe environment with experienced staff who can help you during this transitional period.
  7. You may need multiple attempts to successfully complete detox. The process can be very difficult, and not everyone succeeds the first time. If you don’t make it through, don’t get discouraged. If you have made the commitment to seek recovery, you must attempt again until you can complete the process.
  8. Detox requires medical supervision. Withdrawal symptoms can be unpredictable. With medical supervision, you can feel confident that you’ll be safe even during the most difficult phases of detox. This will minimize the chance of complications while greatly reducing the risk of relapse.

At Harmony Place, we understand the challenges of drug detoxification, and thus offer personalized drug addiction detox services to meet your needs. We have extensive experience working with individuals who are experiencing withdrawal symptoms, and we can help you be prepared for this first stage in your recovery. This is a difficult, but necessary process, and we are here to help you through it.

If any of this criteria sounds like you, please get in touch with us for help: 1 (888) 789-4330
MAT Detox

Which Drugs Can Be Used in Medication Assisted Treatment?

When discussing MAT, it usually has to do with treating heroin and opioid addictions. Here are the three main drugs (and their brand names) that may be used in MAT:

  • Methadone (Methadose or Dolophine)
  • Buprenorphine (Suboxone or Zubsolv)
  • Naltrexone (Vivitrol) – sometimes used to reduce cravings upon discharge
Frequently Asked Questions

MAT Frequently Asked Questions

We hear a number of different questions when it comes to medication-assisted treatment. Here are the most common questions we hear, and our response to them:

Is every client required to take medication during the detox process?

No. We only prescribe medication during detox when our treatment team deems it absolutely necessary. This depends on the type of substance the client used as well as the severity of the addiction.

Some of our clients skip the detox and residential portions of treatment altogether and start right in outpatient treatment when their addiction isn’t as dire. So, to reiterate: No, not every client will need to take detox medication during their first few days with us.

Following SAMHSA’s guidelines, we think clients are a good candidate for medication-assisted treatment if they:

  • Are diagnosed with an addiction to alcohol or opioids.
  • Can fully comply with prescription instructions.
  • Are fully educated on alternative options.
  • Do not have physical health conditions that may get worse with the prescribed medication.
  • Do not have a history of medication misuse.
  • Appear to be motivated to get sober.

What is sub-acute detox?

The first thing that must be done to begin the recovery process is to free the body of all mind-altering substances through detoxification. Evaluating the length of time and the dependency the client has on drugs or alcohol is crucial in implementing a safe detox regimen and any additional services that may be needed.

During detox, the body experiences withdrawal symptoms that differ depending on which substances were used. Detox is an intense process that affects the body as well as the emotions of an addict.

Strong emotions can erupt due to physical discomfort and not being able to take drugs to cope like an addict normally would. A nurse, a doctor or a therapist can help manage the uneasiness of detoxification through supervision, support and possible medication.

One classification of detox is sub-acute detoxification. This type of detox also calls for help in cleansing the body of intoxicating substances. Sub-acute means that the withdrawal symptoms may not necessarily be as life-threatening or as painful as other forms of detox. Clients in sub-acute detox are typically healthier and more stabilized when going through withdrawal.

Pharmaceutical drugs may be omitted during sub-acute detox because they may not be necessary in these situations. Withdrawal may be a little unpleasant to go through without medication to alleviate the symptoms, but the amount of time to get all of the intoxicating substances out of the body is much quicker.

In more extreme withdrawal cases, medication assisted treatment can be used. Sub-acute detox can then be used for tapering off those medications. In any scenario, it’s important to receive therapy and counseling beyond the detox treatment, because it’s difficult to stay sober without this additional support.

Do any professional medical organizations endorse MAT?

Certainly. Many of the top medical and recovery organizations in the country support MAT for substance use disorder. These groups include:

  • American Medical Association (AMA)
  • American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP)
  • American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM)

Are there any other medications you may prescribe to clients overcoming alcohol addiction?

Since alcohol can cause one of the strongest forms of withdrawal, it makes sense to use medication to alleviate the stronger symptoms in some clients. Besides naltrexone, other medications (and their brand names) that we sometimes use in alcohol treatment include:

  • Disulfiram (Antabuse)
  • Acamprosate (Campral)

What other forms of treatment do you use beyond MAT?

MAT is an important part of treatment at Harmony Place, but it’s far from the only approach to treatment we use. We’re committed to providing invaluable clinical care, evidence-based psychotherapy and holistic modalities, as well.

Our evidence-based psychotherapy techniques for group and one-on-one settings include:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Narrative Therapy
  • Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET)

See More of Our Therapy Techniques

Our holistic therapy program includes such modalities as:

  • Acupuncture
  • Yoga
  • Equine-Assisted Therapy
  • Art Therapy
  • Physical Training

See More of Our Holistic Modalities

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