Can Heroin Addiction Be Cured with Methadone?

If you’re like most people with a heroin addiction, the drug has completely overtaken your life.

It’s probably all you think about from the time you wake up to the time you go to sleep. You might even dream about it.

But, can heroin addiction be cured? There is one promising treatment on the horizon – methadone. Since the 1960s, it has been used as a type of therapy for addicts.

How Methadone Works

Heroin Addiction

Methadone prevents heroin withdrawal symptoms, so you can recover more comfortably.

Methadone is a medication that works in a way similar to heroin.

However, the big difference between heroin and methadone is that methadone, when prescribed in the proper dose and taken as prescribed, does not get you high.

Like heroin, methadone enters your brain and attaches to opioid receptors. Heroin usually attaches to all of these, triggering all of your pleasure centers at once and causing you euphoria.

Methadone, on the other hand, only binds to some of them, which isn’t enough for you to get high.

Because of this, methadone has a number of benefits for heroin users, such as:

  • Preventing withdrawal symptoms, such as sweating, pain, or nausea.
  • Preventing you from getting high on heroin or other opioids.
  • Allowing you to withdraw from heroin without a dangerous transition.

Methadone Maintenance Therapy

One of the most common ways to use methadone is with methadone maintenance therapy (MMT).

In MMT, you will receive a daily dose of methadone from a specialized methadone clinic.

This daily dose is enough to keep your opioid receptors occupied at all times to prevent you from getting high on heroin.

While your dose will start low, you will eventually increase to a dose of at least 60mg per day, depending on how well you tolerate the medication.

There are numerous benefits to MMT, some of which include:

  • Reducing criminal activity.
  • Reducing rates of overdose and death.
  • Reducing the risk of HIV, AIDS, or STDs.
  • Increasing your chance of employment.
  • Improving your overall quality of life.

There’s no limit to how long you can stay on MMT. While some people use it for a few months until they can learn the behavioral strategies necessary to alter their drug habits, many others stay on it for the rest of their lives because they are afraid of relapse.

Methadone Detox

Methadone can also be used in a short-term setting as a way to help you detox from heroin.

Because methadone is highly regulated in the United States, methadone detoxification is only done in certified inpatient or outpatient facilities.

Generally, these programs do not last longer than 21 days. During this period, you will be switched over to methadone from heroin and then quickly switched off all drugs altogether.

After you finish detoxing, you will not be given more methadone to take on a regular basis.

Can Methadone Help You?

So, back to the original question – can heroin addiction be cured with methadone?

Yes, absolutely.

Methadone provides a safe and effective way to wean yourself off heroin and take back your life.

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