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Beginning Treatment for Opioid Drug Addiction
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Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) is for adults, ages 18 years or older, who have a primary addiction to opioids (painkillers or heroin) for a year or more. In order to begin treatment, it is recommended that the individual call for a new patient appointment.
New patients should bring a valid form of ID and a method of payment. Options for payment include prompt cash pay, debit or credit card, and some forms of insurance (inquire for more details regarding insurance at the treatment center location).
Intake and Initial Assessment Process
In order to get the proper medication level to help subside symptoms of cravings and withdrawal, the patient needs to be in withdrawal at the time of the first appointment. For this reason, it is recommended that the patient take a day off from work in order to go through the process of stabilization (recommended but not required).
During the initial assessment process, the patient answers questions that will help the physician-led treatment team determine the best custom plan for the individual. All patient records are strictly confidential, therefore, it is highly recommended that the patient be completely honest so that the treatment plan is developed for long-term success.
New patients will meet with the doctor, a dedicated counselor and a nurse to receive the initial medication. During this meeting, the person learns about treatment choices, expectations from treatment and agrees to a plan for counseling.
The first few weeks of treatment require regular patient monitoring to determine effectiveness of initial medication and to achieve a safe and adequate medication level that stabilizes the patient moving forward.
During the Induction Phase, it is important for the patient to frequently meet with their counselor to increase motivation and stay committed to treatment, understand the goals of treatment and establish immediate goals to create change while realizing gains through recovery.
A steady state of medication is achieved and maintained with continuous feedback from the patient on withdrawal symptoms. With a safe optimal level of medication, the person is able to remain physically comfortable without experiencing the euphoria or sedation associated with painkillers or heroin, thereby remaining engaged in the full recovery program.
Patients are regularly meeting with their counselor to address current situations, heal past issues and establish goals for further improvement in all areas of their lives. The Maintenance Phase helps patients continue to make strong progress with work, relationships, and social obligations while maintaining a steady state of well-being.