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Stop Pain Pill Dependence
About Methadone, Vivitrol Suboxone, & Sublocade
Methadone, heroin, morphine, and certain prescription pain pills are within a group of drugs known as opioids. These opioids affect the brain’s ability to sense pain, mood changes, and other various emotions. What makes Methadone different are it’s long-acting effects normally 24 hours or more. These effects include inhibiting the craving for other opioids. Methadone is taken orally once a day which helps avoid injecting needles and the harmful effects of oral opioids by mouth once a day. The ultimate benefit is staying away from the risks of hepatitis and HIV (when injecting needles). So being on methadone can help you live a healthier lifestyle free from the constant stress of where the next illegal drug is going to come from. Many clients have commented on the fact that methadone helps them feel “normal” for the first time in a long while. Methadone is not a cure for addiction. It must be part of a comprehensive psychosocial program that included a treatment team involving a physician, nurse, and counselor. All of these things together are part of the ideal recovery program.
Buprenorphine (Suboxone is buprenorphine plus naloxone) is what is known as a partial agonist. Opioid Agonists are part of a class of drugs that can cause an opioid effect like heroin, hyrdocodone, oxycodone, and methadone. Opioid Antagonists are part of a class of drugs that can reverse and block the effects of agonists drugs. Narcan which has become very well known because it is used to fight overdoses helps reverse heroine or opioid overdoses. Buprenorphine can act as both an agonist and antagonist. It binds to the opioid receptors in the brain but only partially binds to these receptors. But it binds enough to stifle cravings and withdrawal from opioids. When all the receptors are occupied with Buprenorphine, opioids have no added effect. So depending on the dosage of opioids taken, taking more will not help produce the “high” that may be desired.
VIVITROL is the first and only non-addictive, once-monthly, time-released medication (naltrexone in a different form) that, when combined with counseling, is proven to help prevent relapse to opioid AND alcohol dependence. For persons who have detoxed from opioids especially after an inpatient hospital stay, the VIVITROL injection helps prevent relapse when take for a period of 3-6 months, and in some case, up to 12 months may be needed based on patient experiences thus far. VIVITROL blocks opioid receptors in the brain while a client works with the counselor and/or psychiatrist with individualized counseling.
SUBLOCADE™ (Buprenorphine extended-release injection) is a new form of Buprenorphine medication designed to be taken as a monthly injection for opioid dependence rather than as a daily dose. It’s very convenient for those that travel frequently or lead busy, active lifestyles. Most major insurance covers the cost of the medication depending on your deductible. The monthly co-pay is separate. Persons will start with oral Buprenorphine before being switched over to Sublocade by the physician. Sublocade helps you maintain a steady state of Buprenorphine in your system.