An Introduction to Medication-Assisted Treatment

Medication-assisted treatment in Kansas City can be an excellent solution for you or someone you love if you struggle with substance abuse. Medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, is a form of rehab therapy that not only addresses the safety concerns of detox from highly addictive substances but the underlying factors that contribute to relapse.

From detox to aftercare addiction treatment in Kansas, Arista Recovery can help.If you are ready for help, reach out to Arista to learn more about our Kansas City MAT addiction treatment.

What Exactly is Medication-Assisted Therapy?

Medication-assisted treatment in Kansas City it’s a specific type of treatment that uses FDA-approved medications to help you cope with any withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings you might have after your initial detox. When using these FDA-approved medications, you are also required to remain under supervision throughout your detox process because all drugs are prescription based and require medical monitoring.

After your initial detox, you should participate in ongoing therapy. What type of therapy you use might look different from one Kansas City MAT rehab center to another. However, you will generally remain at the facility for your initial detox and either stay at the facility for part of a residential program or return to the MAT drug and alcohol rehab center in Kansas City during the day for your regular therapy appointments.

How Medication-Assisted Therapy Helps People Recover?

Certain addictive substances like alcohol and opioids come with a variety of health complications and are difficult to stop cold turkey. You are often likely to have higher success rates if you are able to wean yourself off of those substances using drugs that are less addictive.

With Kansas City MAT addiction treatment, prescription drugs are provided under two circumstances:

  1. The first is during your initial detox. If, for example, you are detoxing from opioids, you might be given a prescription for less addictive substances to help you manage the withdrawal symptoms.
  2. The second is during your ongoing therapy. You might be given medication to block the effect of alcohol when you drink or to decrease cravings from opioids. In these cases, you are able to remain sober longer because your brain and body don't register the positive effects of substance abuse.

To learn more about what addictions benefit from MAT, call Arista Recovery in Kansas.

What are the Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment?

A MAT drug and alcohol rehab center offers specialized treatment for specific addictions. There are two very important benefits:

Manage Withdrawal Symptoms

The first is the ability to manage your withdrawal. Certain substances are next to impossible to quit on your own because the withdrawal symptoms are so severe and dangerous. It becomes much more feasible if you have help from a Kansas City MAT rehab center.

Manage Ongoing Cravings

The second is your ability to manage ongoing cravings. Regular substance abuse changes the structure of your brain and the way your reward center works. The part of your brain that controls impulses gets smaller, and the part of your brain that rewards you for impulsive actions like drug use and alcoholism gets bigger.

Simple triggers like seeing a store where you used to buy alcohol or the hospital where you used to purchase prescription opioids can trigger neurological signals that result in uncontrollable cravings. The medications used in this type of treatment reduce those signals and change how intense they are, making you much more likely to avoid a relapse.

Reach out to Arista to visit our Kansas City MAT rehab center. Have questions about how medication-assisted treatment works? Call our caring admissions team 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

What Medications are Used to Treat Addiction?

The medications you might use during treatment can help you wean yourself from the addiction so that you can slowly transition to something less harmful and then to no drugs at all, or they are meant to induce adverse effects from using or drinking so that you don’t have positive associations with drug and alcohol abuse anymore. Categories include:

Alcohol Antagonists

This means you get sick when you consume alcohol instead of feeling any positive effect which helps to reduce the risk of relapse.

Examples: Disulfiram is an antagonist that causes unpleasant feelings if you drink, like chest pain, headaches, vomiting, and nausea. It comes in the form of a tablet you take once a day to avoid relapse.

GABA Analogs

These block the brain signals associated with withdrawal symptoms from alcohol so you can recover more comfortably.

Examples: Acamprosate is administered within five days of your detox and helps to block the negative withdrawal symptoms. It comes in tablet form, and it helps to reduce alcohol cravings.

Opioid Agonists

Opioid agonists attach to the same brain receptors as an opioid, but don’t cause the same high. They are used to alleviate the side effects of cravings; instead of abusing opioids to get rid of intense cravings, you use this medication which alleviates the discomfort but doesn’t get you high.

Examples: Methadone is a popular opioid agonist which helps control cravings. It comes in the form of a tablet or an oral concentrate. Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist that reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms. It comes in an injection, tablet, a film you apply to your skin, or a subdermal implant.

Opioid Antagonists

These help to block opioid receptor activation, so they won’t get rid of your withdrawal symptoms, but they’ll decrease cravings a lot, and they’ll prevent you from feeling high when you use opioids.

Examples: Naltrexone is an opioid antagonist that prevents you from feeling any high if you take opioids which helps reduce the long-term risk of cravings or relapse. It comes in the form of an injection.

Are There MAT Drug Rehabs?

You can get individualized help with your addiction at a Kansas City MAT rehab center. The only way to receive this treatment with the proper medication locally is at a designated MAT drug and alcohol rehab center in Kansas City.

Some facilities function exclusively as medication-assisted treatment centers, while others offer medication-assisted treatment in addition to regular detox. When evaluating  different rehab centers, you not only want to look for Kansas City MAT addiction treatment but for any other services you might require, such as:

  • Residential programs and ongoing services like partial hospitalization programs or outpatient programs
  • Dual diagnosis services for co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorders
  • Holistic therapy like yoga or mindfulness

Call Arista to learn about our MAT and how we can help you.

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