Connecticut Medication-Assisted Treatment Programs

Someone who has an addiction to opioids or other substances that cause physical dependency will need medications to help them get clean without suffering withdrawal symptoms. Most addictions that cause physical dependence occur when the person uses the drug or alcohol repeatedly and then develops a tolerance to the substance. Once a person has developed a tolerance, they require more of the substance to feel the effects. This eventually leads to the person’s body requiring the substance to be physically stable and for the person to feel normal.

What Drugs Fall Under Medication-Assisted Treatment Guidelies?

Not all addictions require medications to stop addiction and use. The types of addictive substances that do cause a physical dependency that will prolong the substance use include:

  • Heroin
  • Opioid Prescription Pain Killers
  • Fentanyl
  • Alcohol
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Stimulant Prescription medications ( Adderall, Ritalin)

Other substances cause addiction but do not necessarily cause physical dependence and withdrawal symptoms once the substances are no longer ingested. The types of drugs that cause addiction but are not known for their physical addictive quality include:

  • Cocaine and Crack cocaine
  • Methamphetamine
  • Club Drugs: Ecstasy, Ketamine, GHB
  • Hallucinogens (LSD, Mushrooms, etc.)
Connecticut Medication-Assisted Treatment Programs

What is Medication Assisted Treatment Program?

The medication-assisted treatment programs in Connecticut are most commonly referred to as MAT. This type of program is overseen by medical doctors and psychiatrists, and other addiction specialists who work in unison to prescribe safe medications as part of medication-assisted treatment program (MAT). A person in a medication-assisted treatment program will be monitored by professionals who help them develop themselves in proactive recovery. Most medication-assisted rehab programs will require an individual to be engaged with therapy for substance use disorder, also known as addiction, and get support from a rehab program, counselors, or recovery support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, or faith-based recovery networks.

Does Medication Assisted Treatment Cure Addiction?

A quality substance abuse treatment center or medication-assisted treatment providing office will rely on established models for science-based therapy and proven to improve a person’s chances of remaining clean and sober. Medication-Assisted Treatment are not therapy, or can they cure addiction. When combined with inpatient and outpatient addiction treatment programs, they can effectively stop drug use and addiction, but they do not cure addiction. A person can get help for their addiction through a broad spectrum of mental health and behavioral therapies that accompany many MAT programs. When medication-assisted treatment is combined with behavioral therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and motivational interviewing, and dialectical behavioral therapies, others support long-term recovery.

Who Recommends Using Medication-Assisted Treatment?

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) strongly recommends using MAT to help a person achieve a drug and alcohol-free life. They reference the benefits of medication-assisted treatments and explain how these safe medications help the individual’s brain overcome the drugs or alcohol.

Using medication to treat substance use disorders are often referred to as Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT). In this model, medication is used in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies. Medications can reduce the cravings and other symptoms associated with withdrawal from a substance by occupying receptors in the brain associated with using that drug (agonists or partial agonists) to block the rewarding sensation of using a substance (antagonists) or induce negative feelings when a substance is taken. MAT is having been primarily used to treat opioid use disorder but is also used for alcohol use disorder and the treatment of some other substance use disorders. (SAMHSA)

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