For the millions of Americans struggling with opioid addiction, seeking out help can seem like an overwhelming endeavor. But there are options when it comes to achieving long-term sobriety, including taking part in a methadone outpatient treatment program.
What is an Outpatient Methadone Treatment Program?
A methadone outpatient treatment program, like the one offered by Trenton Healthcare Clinic, is a comprehensive plan that offers counseling and physician-prescribed medication (when needed) to assist individuals with obtaining long-term freedom and recovery from their drug addiction. While this program can apply to any drug addiction, it is primarily used to treat opiate addiction.
The medication that’s administered to those in the methadone outpatient treatment program helps to offset the cravings for opiates, while also reducing the withdrawal symptoms, which can include sweating, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, headaches, insomnia, and other flu-like symptoms.
By being able to work through the physical aspects of drug withdrawal, through the use doctor-prescribed methadone, patients can focus on engaging in the counseling sessions to understand their addiction and beat it. According to Melissa Bishop, the MAT division director of Trenton Healthcare Clinic, the counseling sessions help with the behavioral and cognitive changes needed to maintain long-term recovery.
What Happens During Methadone Outpatient Treatment?
Trenton Healthcare provides intensive outpatient counseling sessions. When patients first enter the treatment program, it is suggested they attend these sessions for three hours a day, three days a week. “The more engaged [patients] are,” Bishop says, “The more they are willing to make the changes necessary.”
Each patient is assigned a counselor who develops a treatment plan for their individual needs.
In addition to individual sessions,, there are group sessions, including family meetings, that patients can (and should) attend. These counseling programs are meant to provide patients with support, as well as the education and tools they’ll need to attain lifelong sobriety.
Health Services During Outpatient Methadone Treatment
Trenton Healthcare’s outpatient methadone treatment program provides patients with comprehensive medical care, including medical examinations, urine analysis, and testing for HIV , Hepatitis, and Tuberculosis.
All of these services are meant to ensure patients are in the best health possible in order to achieve their goals of sobriety.
Why is Outpatient Methadone Treatment so Important?
While Bishop acknowledges that going into an methadone outpatient treatment program may initially be difficult, it can ultimately be a life-saving decision. Research shows that medication-assisted outpatient methadone treatment can help individuals stay sober longer.
“Opioid addiction is a lifestyle that many have had for many years, so changing doesn’t happen overnight,” she says. “But with a little help and guidance, lives can be saved, prolonged, and improved.”