Here you’ll find information about treatment options that are available to you.
Although you may feel lost and alone now, know that there is help. Do a search for treatment in your area here or through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency at findtreatment.samhsa.gov/.
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Treatment options are available.
Help for opioid addiction is available. There are a number of different treatment options that fit into different lifestyles and are accommodating to individual needs.
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WHAT ARE MY TREATMENT OPTIONS?
Medication-assisted treatment, the use of medications in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, is one approach to the treatment of substance use disorders. There are two main types of medication-assisted treatment: one is provided at a clinic, the other may be prescribed through a doctor’s office or outpatient setting.
Through a doctor's office
Some doctors are qualified to treat opioid addiction in their offices. The number of these doctors has been growing and your own family doctor may be one of these doctors. See a list of these doctors in your area who may give you more information. These doctors are prepared to evaluate and to treat opioid addiction.
In this type of medication-assisted treatment, doctors may prescribe medications to help suppress withdrawal symptoms and decrease cravings in order to help you stay focused on your treatment goals. In addition to medication, this treatment option generally requires a few visits to get you started and then once you are stabilized, the visit schedule is based on the clinical decision of your doctor. Doctors may also refer you to a professional counseling option with someone who also understands the disease of opioid addiction. Counseling may help you cope with events or social situations associated with past opioid use and teach you skills to recognize and manage those types of triggers that may affect your addiction.LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS TREATMENT OPTION
Methadone Maintenance Treatment (MMT), a form of medication-assisted treatment, has been available since 1964. Methadone is used to block the euphoria or "high" associated with other opioids — diminishing the effects of withdrawal and giving you an opportunity to change your behavior and stop using heroin or prescription pain relievers.
This type of treatment may require you to visit a clinic daily to receive your medication. You may be monitored while taking your medication. As with all medication-assisted treatment, when it is determined that you are stabilized and meet the criteria for take home doses, the visits may be less often. More information about methadone treatment programs can be found at www.samhsa.gov/treatment/.
As with other long-term diseases, there’s more to opioid addiction than just its physical side: how you feel about yourself and the choices you make may also play a part in opioid addiction. Counseling can be very effective in addressing the psychological and behavioral aspects of addiction. In fact, combining medication-assisted treatment with behavioral therapy has been shown to increase the likelihood of treatment success.
Working with a professional counselor or therapist, and/or listening to other people who share your concerns and experiences, may help you learn to recognize the situations, feelings, or events that could "trigger" a desire to misuse opioids. Recognizing these triggers in yourself and the world around you — and learning new coping skills — can help you to avoid triggers or to manage them as they happen.
Types of professional counseling include:
Patients may find group therapy helpful for treating and for managing opioid addiction because it provides a support network along with:
- Peer support and acceptance
- Real-world examples of other people experiencing recovery
- Positive feedback to help cope
As part of your treatment and in seeking counseling, you may choose to work with a psychologist or other licensed clinical counselor. This is especially important if you suffer from depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions that may contribute to your opioid use.
Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency at samhsa.gov/treatment/ or call the SAMHSA 24/7 Treatment Referral Line at 1-800-662-4357 (HELP).
In-patient treatment programs can offer around-the-clock support and highly structured programs. In-patient treatment programs include:
Patients and their treatment team may decide that a hospital is the best solution for a while. There are many types of hospital services for people with opioid addiction, ranging from in-patient stays with intense medical monitoring and treatment to outpatient programs they can attend while living at home.
Residential treatment centers
At residential treatment centers, patients leave their everyday lives for a period of time, living with other patients in a center that is set up to help them manage their addiction. Typically residential centers offer training, education, and intensive counseling to help patients rebuild a drug-free life. The length of stay is determined by the treatment team according to the patient's needs and progress.
12-step programs are well known for use in addiction recovery and based on a set of guiding principles that outline a course of action. There are many different 12-step programs. Some are likely to be active in your area and can usually be found in your local phone book or online. Generally, the only requirement for membership in the program is a desire to stop using drugs. Most are abstinence-based programs modeled in part or wholly on Alcoholics Anonymous®.
Members meet regularly to support each other with the idea that people who suffer from a similar problem understand and can help one another. By coming together to share experiences at regular group meetings, people who are further along in recovery can help guide others who are just beginning. Unlike group therapy, 12-step meetings may not be guided by a professional counselor. People who are more experienced and stable may become sponsors of newcomers and are available to support them between the meetings for additional guidance. There are no dues or fees for membership and the groups are self supporting through members’ contributions. There are "open" and "closed" meetings. Anyone can attend an open meeting where usually one of the members of the group is a speaker. Closed meetings are meant only for people who believe that they are addicted and everyone has an opportunity to speak (or pass) in a round robin format.
FAQs: About treatment options
- How do I know which treatment option is right for me?
- How do I get started with treatment?