What Is Medication-assisted Treatment?
The Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has stated that the use of FDA-approved medication-assisted treatment (MAT) along with evidence-based therapy is more effective in achieving long-term sobriety compared to therapy alone.
The use of these anti-craving medications in medication-assisted treatment manages withdrawal symptoms and reduces cravings drastically, especially for those with alcohol or opioid use disorder.
There are currently medications to treat addiction being researched that would allow for medication-assisted treatment of cocaine use disorders and benzodiazepine use disorder.
Medication-assisted treatment does not cure addiction, nor does it guarantee success without being used in conjunction with other treatment such as 12-step programs, substance abuse treatment, counseling, therapy and strong aftercare plans.
Long-term sobriety takes daily effort, and GateHouse’s medication-assisted treatment offers a solid foundation for our clients in early recovery and can improve mental health.
How Does MAT Work?
- Reduces withdrawal symptoms, such as Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS)
- Works to reduce cravings common in early stages of recovery
- Length of medication use varies by case
- Allows a physician to closely supervise during early recovery
- Works by locking onto the opioid receptors in the brain
Is It Safe?
While there are certain medications used in medication-assisted treatment that can cause dependency, the ones we use do not. GateHouse only uses Naltrexone in its medication-assisted treatment, prescribed by a physician and administered under close, frequent monitoring.
Naltrexone has the least amount of side effects in medication-assisted treatment. When a client chooses medication-assisted treatment at GateHouse, they are under close supervision of medical professionals who check in with them weekly on any side effects from the medication.
If someone on medication-assisted treatment relapses, it is important to note that their tolerance level is lowered and they can be more susceptible to opioid overdose.
Our goal at GateHouse is to provide all the necessary tools for recovery from drug addiction, an introduction to 12-step programs and aftercare plans to give clients the best chance at avoiding relapse.
What Is Vivitrol?
Vivitrol is the brand name for extended-release Naltrexone and is the medication GateHouse offers as part of our medication-assisted treatment. It targets two of the most common problems in addiction: alcohol use disorder and opioid dependency.
Vivitrol is an injectable drug that must only be administered by medical professionals. At GateHouse, we have the medical staff certified to administer and monitor Vivitrol in our clients who choose to participate in medication-assisted treatment.
Vivitrol works by blocking opioid receptors in the brain, resulting in patients being unable to feel the “high” from opiates and alcohol. It also works in the parts of the brain that control cravings, reducing the urges to use drugs and alcohol.
GateHouse is at the forefront of substance abuse treatment by offering medication-assisted treatment to our clients. We work to ensure every client has the best chance to achieve long-term sobriety.