When an individual seeks addiction treatment of any kind, they’re often faced with the difficult reality of treatment length – months to years in a rehab program, with minimal chance of continuing certain daily obligations. They may feel overwhelmed, burdened, confused, and as if they’re out of convenient options. These feelings often override their desire to receive treatment, and they again fall back into a dangerous cycle.
At MAT Care Clinics, we understand this reality and do everything possible to alleviate these challenging thought patterns. No one should ever feel hopeless when they can’t find a reliable treatment option for their needs. Finding practical solutions is always the main priority for anyone with a substance use disorder (SUD), and program length is undeniably important. Fortunately, medication-assisted treatment (MAT) offers a reliable solution that keeps your obligations in mind.
The convenience of MAT makes it among the best options for those with SUDs, particularly opioid use disorders (OUDs) and alcohol use disorders (AUDs). Here are three reasons why MAT suits your needs better than other programs and how you can receive the necessary treatment without upending your life.
The Challenging Reality of Treatment Length
One of the most glaring reasons inpatient and rehabilitation programs may require hefty consideration is their duration. Depending on the severity of addiction, these programs can last up to two years and commonly last months at a time. While there are inpatient and outpatient rehab programs, most individuals begin their recovery process in an inpatient program, which usually requires full-time relocation to a clinic for their recovery period.
For many, this doesn’t logically make sense regarding daily endeavors. Plenty of individuals have jobs, families, social lives, and other obligations that don’t allow for lengthy stays in rehab. Of course, receiving treatment is always the right way to go, but sometimes what’s available isn’t ideal, and that’s completely fine. Deciding to get help is difficult enough, but making that decision and not feeling confident in your choice is far more of a challenge.
The Convenience of MAT: 3 Things You Should Know
1. MAT Offers Superior Flexibility – Medication-assisted treatment presents many advantages to individuals with scheduling concerns and is among the most flexible treatment programs available. MAT’s efficacy is not squandered by its flexibility, as it ensures that all who need it can take advantage of its services. However, those asking, “How long is MAT?” may find it tough to get a concrete answer. Instead, this largely depends on addiction severity and length of substance use. Someone who has abused heroin for three years will require a longer treatment plan than someone who has used it for three months. Meanwhile, someone with an AUD will require a different treatment program than someone with an OUD.
Many MAT programs last one to three months and often remain in line with the length of therapy programs that coincide with treatment. MAT may extend up to a year for those with more severe addictions. Further, MAT often serves as the precursor to interventions with longer durations, such as cognitive behavioral therapy or support groups.
MAT’s most significant flexibility benefit is that it does not require an inpatient program or hospitalization. Patients can receive treatment and return home on the same day, which allows them to continue their regular duties. While the type of medication may vary from case to case, patients can take their medication as they please and most often in the comfort of their homes.
2. MAT Pairs Well With Therapy – Medication-assisted treatment utilizes a dual approach to treatment that works in conjunction with various behavioral health treatments and 12-step programs. Studies indicate that patients who receive psychosocial treatment simultaneously with their addiction treatment have significantly better outcomes. These therapeutic interventions can also address the root causes of conditions and provide additional resources for individuals with co-occurring mental and physical health complications. Some of the primary goals of this dual approach include the following:
- Encouraging patients to adhere to their medications
- Modifying underlying behaviors
- Treating existing mental health disorders
- Offering both individual and group counseling
- Providing referrals to community-based services
- Connecting individuals to family support systems
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most common form of therapy used with MAT. Patients work with a therapist or other mental health counselor in a structured format with limited sessions. CBT helps individuals become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking that may contribute to substance use and helps them better manage stressful life situations.
3. MAT Succinctly Addresses Withdrawal Symptoms – Medications used in MAT work well to relieve withdrawal symptoms and psychological cravings that cause chemical imbalances in the body. When provided at the proper dosage, these medications have no adverse effects on a patient’s cognitive functioning, mental capabilities, or intelligence. Specific medications used in MAT, such as suboxone or naltrexone, block opioid receptors in the brain to reduce or eliminate intoxicating effects.
Some people believe that treating addiction with medications is merely a way to substitute one substance for another. However, these evidence-based medications carry little risk of dependency and are administered in proper doses so as not to lead to abuse. Patients who take these medications are more likely to avoid criminal behavior, maintain employment, reduce their exposure to HIV by high-risk sexual behaviors or injections, and engage in counseling interventions that benefit their recovery.
Start Your Treatment With MAT Care Clinics
MAT Care Clinics is ready to help you start your recovery journey. We’ve dedicated years of research and clinical testing to make medication-assisted treatment available and accessible to people suffering from alcohol or opioid addiction. While we recommend therapy and have close ties to addiction treatment centers, we focus solely on delivering our clients the best medication-assisted treatment services and care. Our talented medical staff treats addiction to substances such as:
- Hydrocodone (Vicodin)
- Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
- Meperidine (Demerol)
- Oxycodone (OxyContin, Percodan, Percocet)
- Oxymorphone (Opana)
We offer easy-to-access appointments, no waiting lists, and open communication at each step of your recovery process. Don’t be burdened by the reality of treatment length. For more information regarding our MAT services, contact us today.