Methadone for Opioid Withdrawal & Treatment

Many people manage their recovery from opioid addiction with methadone, an FDA-approved medication to treat opioid use disorder.1 If you or a loved one are struggling with compulsive opioid misuse or an opioid use disorder, understanding how medications like methadone can be used in opioid addiction treatment is important.

Continue reading to learn more about methadone, including its potential side effects and uses in opioid withdrawal and addiction treatment, and how to get help for yourself or someone you love.

What Is Methadone?

Methadone is a long-acting opioid agonist that may be used in both the management of opioid withdrawal and in the treatment of opioid use disorder.2  It works by activating opioid receptors in the brain to reduce opioid cravings and delay or minimize the onset of opioid withdrawal symptoms.3 When used as indicated for managing opioid use disorder, methadone should not elicit any rewarding effects of its own, and it may also decrease the rewarding/euphoric effects of any other opioids, should their use be attempted while on methadone treatment.

In the United States, methadone can only be distributed by opioid treatment programs that are certified and accredited by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and permitted by state authorities.2 When used as prescribed, methadone is a safe and effective part of a treatment plan for opioid use disorder.1

Side Effects of Methadone

As is the case with most medications, there is the potential to experience some side effects when taking methadone. In many cases the benefits of treatment outweigh the potential for adverse effects. Your treatment team can further discuss the risks and provide ongoing assessment of their magnitude, making treatment adjustments when needed.

Potential side effects associated with methadone use include:

  • Sedation.
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness.
  • Nausea.
  • Sweating.
  • Itching skin.

How Is Methadone Used in Detox?

Opioid withdrawal symptoms can be intensely uncomfortable and may be a roadblock to recovery efforts.2, 5, 6 Methadone for detox can be used to ease acute opioid withdrawal symptoms, some of which can include:5, 7

  • Insomnia.
  • Dysphoric mood.
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Muscle aches.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Fever.
  • Runny nose.
  • Excessive yawning.

Methadone for Addiction Treatment

Methadone has been safely and effectively used for over four decades to help individuals struggling with opioid addiction achieve and sustain recovery.1,3

People prescribed methadone as part of their recovery treatment plan are more likely to participate in other aspects of their treatment, such as therapy.6 This is because methadone can help to reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings, making it easier to focus on working toward recovery.8

Addiction Treatment and Detox in Hollywood, FL

Methadone is an FDA-approved medication that when taken as prescribed can be used safely and effectively as a component of treatment for opioid addiction.

To learn more about opioid use disorder treatment, call our admissions navigators at who are ready to provide additional information on inpatient addiction treatment near Miami and other levels of addiction treatment offered, including drug detox in Florida. Reach out now to start the admissions process, learn about insurance plans that cover addiction treatment, and learn about other payment options.

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