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Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT)

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Medication Assisted Therapy (MAT) is a broad-spectrum method of treatment of substance use disorders. At Orlando Treatment Solutions, our specialists offer this effective treatment which empowers patients to take back control of their lives from substance use disorder. The primary purpose of MAT is to manage withdrawal symptoms, cope with cravings, and help the patient maintain a sober life, which makes MAT the backbone of the addiction treatment.

What is Medication Assisted Therapy (MAT)?

MAT is an effective treatment approach to substance use disorders that includes pharmacotherapy, which is the use of FDA-approved medications in combination with psychotherapy and behavioral therapies. The aim is to treat the body and mind of an addict to make sure that they get the best shot at adoption and recovery. As a technique refined over more than 30 years of research and practice, MAT has been proven to enhance patient outcomes decrease rates of relapse, and ultimately enable patients to lead happier, more productive lives.

Despite its proven effectiveness, MAT is often misunderstood. Critics view it as a myth to fine-tune it to suggest that medication in the treatment of addictions is merely swapping from one drug to another. Nonetheless, these drugs can be useful when a part of a more thorough treatment regimen, making the brain chemistry more stable, blocking the euphoric effects of alcohol and opioids, and eradicating the desire to use substances.

How MAT Works

MAT involves taking medication for treating substance addiction while simultaneously participating in behavioral therapy to address the psychological aspects of the illness. This two-pronged approach aids in the process of rebalancing the brain chemistry, in the elimination or at least the decrease of the cravings, and in enabling patients to concentrate on the therapy and forthcoming changes for the better.

Medications used in MAT can be equally administrated to help in managing withdrawal symptoms and minimize cravings. They achieve this by mimicking the substance that is being ingested but do it in a safer and more regulated way.

Psychosocial therapies in MAT enable patients to change the approaches they use in substance use, improve healthful interpersonal skills, and stick to other forms of treatment like medication. This all-encompassing would make it easier for the patients to get support in all the areas hence improving the chances of recovery.

Types of Medicines Used in MAT

  1. Methadone 

Methadone is a long-acting opioid agonist, which alleviates opioid craving and withdrawal syndrome but does not cause the ‘high’ associated with opioid abuse. It is prescribed to be taken in a clinical area under the supervision of a doctor.

  1. Buprenorphine

Buprenorphine is a partial agonist at the opioid receptors and exerts its effect on the same receptors in the brain but is much weaker than full opioids like heroin and methadone. This helps to minimize withdrawal signs and desire for the substance in addition to minimizing the likelihood of abusing it.

  1. Naltrexone

Naltrexone is considered an opioid antagonist since it opposes the rewarding and depressive effects of drugs including heroin, morphine, as well as codeine. It is used for maintenance treatment in patients who have been detoxified from opioids and is available in tablet and injectable form as a monthly dosing.

Several factors determine the type of medication to be prescribed depending on the specific substance use disorder, the level of addiction, the patient’s preference, as well as any mental health disorders that may be present.

Conditions Treated with MAT

Opioid Use Disorder

MAT is long effective in opioid use disorder and alleviates compulsive craving as well as the withdrawal symptoms related to opioid dependency.

Alcohol Use Disorder

Disulfiram, acamprosate, and naltrexone are other medications considered for the treatment of alcohol dependence which they work to control withdrawal symptoms and protect against relapse.

Other Substance Use Disorders

MAT is mostly applied for opioid and alcohol use disorder, however, there are new studies that are being conducted to apply it to other substance use disorders thus giving hope to people with addiction to other substances.

MAT at Orlando Treatment Solutions

MAT at Orlando Treatment Solutions

Initial Assessment and Diagnosis

The first process of MAT in Orlando Treatment Solutions involves an evaluation process to determine the nature of substance use disorder and any co-occurring conditions. It involves medical, psychiatric, and social assessments to design an appropriate treatment plan for the patient.

Personalized Treatment Plans

Every patient makes a regimen that has the right medication, counseling, and behavioral therapy needed for the specific case. This plan is deliberated for individuals and tailored depending on the needs and environment surrounding the patient.

Ongoing Monitoring and Adjustments

Treatments are reviewed frequently and the determined treatment regimen is modified to fit the patient’s condition if necessary. Intake of medication, compliance with the same, and the reaction of the body to treatment is usually closely observed.

Integration with Other Treatment Services

MAT provided at Orlando Treatment Solutions is combined with other treatment methods such as individual as well as group therapy, support groups, as well as other therapeutic applications.

Benefits of MAT

  • Increased Retention in Treatment – The patients who receive MAT are more likely to stick with the treatment process, and sticking with treatment is a major determining factor when it comes to regaining health.
  • Reduction in Illicit Drug Use – MAT plays a prime role in decreasing the rate of illicit opioids and other substances, thereby affecting the patient’s life positively.
  • Improved Social Functioning – It has been noted that patients on MAT have enhanced social adjustment, family and workplace relations, as well as stability in their employment among other aspects of their lives.
  • Decreased Risk of Overdose – MAT is beneficial in lowering the likelihood of overdosing, which remains a leading cause of death in those with opioid use disorder by minimizing or completely doing away with the illicit substances.

Behavioral Therapies in MAT

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

CBT enables the patient to identify and modify the way of thinking and acting concerning the substance use disorder. It is an important element of MAT and helps the patient avoid relapse and search for viable solutions.

Contingency Management

This therapy involves the application of motivation and reward to ensure that the affected person does not take alcohol. For instance, patients are rewarded for not swearing or for staying sober as prescribed, and not missing therapy sessions, among others.

Motivational Interviewing

Motivational interviewing can be defined as processes that assist the patient to enhance his/her internal drive to change. By definition, it is an approach that revolves around the patient to enhance their devotion to getting well.

Support Groups

Counseling and support groups are an essential part of MAT since they offer encouragement, and helpful resources to the patients. It’s important to see how they assist patients to overcome all the obstacles of restoring their health and remain persistent.

Medication Assisted Treatment or Therapy (MAT) is a highly effective approach in the treatment of substance use disorders. Orlando Treatment Solutions is committed to delivering high-quality, evidence-based, and patient-centered services for lasting recovery. If you or your loved one is suffering from addiction, do not hesitate to ask for help.

To speak to one of our professionals or to find out more about our treatment services, please contact Orlando Treatment Solutions at (321)-415-3213 or write to us at info@shc.health.

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Our leadership team has extensive experience in dual-diagnosis treatment and is ready to help those who are struggling with substance use and mental health.

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Our staff consists of many licensed addiction and mental health treatment facilitators and other staff who are ready to share their experience and their success.

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Orlando Treatment Solutions has helped over 2,000 people who have struggled with substance use (alcohol and drug addiction) and mental health find freedom.

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