Is Medication the Only Part of a Methadone Program?

Long-time opiate users have an especially difficult time controlling, let alone breaking an opiate addiction. It’s not uncommon for users to make multiple failed attempts at quitting, only to find themselves using more than they ever did before.

Over the years, methadone programs have become the addict’s best last hope for living a drug-free life. As an opiate addiction treatment, methadone has the longest track record in terms of research data obtained and real-world application experience.

While methadone programs do specialize in administering methadone drug therapies, they also offer a range of treatment services designed to improve a person’s chances of a successful recovery. Counseling, psychotherapy as well as other forms of assistance provide a well-rounded treatment approach for helping addicts live a drug-free lifestyle.

Methadone Program Services

counseling and methadone

Some methadone centers offer counseling services in addition to medication.

Methadone programs include various treatment services designed to maximize the effects of methadone therapies. According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, these services help recovering addicts to develop essential daily living skills.

Services offered include –

  • Interpersonal development
  • Drug education counseling
  • Psychotherapy
  • Group therapy
  • Support group work

Through ongoing treatment, a person develops the attitude and motivation needed to fully engage in the recovery process. As methadone programs operate according to state and federal guidelines, recovering addicts must agree to receive these treatment services in order to participate in the program.

Individual Drug Counseling

Individual drug counseling provides program participants with the tools and information needed to maintain abstinence on a long-term basis. Methadone programs use drug counseling as a means for helping a person develop productive behaviors that support a drug-free lifestyle, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Not surprisingly, these programs require regular drug testing as a condition of treatment.

Individuals learn relapse prevention strategies designed to help them identify the types of cues that trigger drug-using behaviors. Recovering addicts also take part in vocational training as well as getting into the habit of attending 12-Step support group meetings on a regular basis.

Treatment for Co-Occurring Conditions

Long-term drug use causes many addicts to develop co-occurring psychological conditions, such as depression and anxiety disorders. When this is the case, daily stress factors can easily challenge a person’s ability to maintain abstinence.

Methadone programs provide psychotherapy treatment to help a person better manage depression and anxiety symptoms. The types of therapies offered include –

  • Behavioral therapy
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Interpersonal therapy

While one form of therapy may focus on helping identify destructive thinking patterns, another may help a person develop healthy coping behaviors for dealing with everyday life.

Methadone Program Treatment Goals

Throughout the methadone program treatment process counselors asses and reassess a person’s progress in meeting program goals. In effect, the medication, counseling and psychotherapy treatments all work together to provide recovering addicts with a solid foundation for a successful recovery.

Through ongoing treatment, program participants enter into a higher level of social functioning within the community as well as within their daily interpersonal relationships. Ultimately, recovering addicts come out of the program able to maintain abstinence on a long-term basis.