Methadone Addiction Treatment & Detox Clinic in Tampa

Methadone is a trap. That’s common knowledge among those who have used it as a substitute for heroin and other opiates. Many addiction specialists say methadone is more addictive than the drugs it replaces, that it is more difficult to quit than heroin and the pain of coming off this drug is too difficult to do on one’s own.

“The more methadone you take, the more you need, until you are on an incredibly high dosage just to keep from feeling sick.” Says Tranquil Shores’ Medical Advisor, Dr. Richard Aranibar.

Developed in Germany in the late 30’s, Methadone became the standard for replacing heroin in the 60-‘s. And its use among heroin addicts has helped decrease some of the criminal element and diseases associated with intra-venous drug use such as Aids and Hepatitis C. But medical experts say the only real solution to opiate addiction is an abstinence-based program.

Methadone Addiction Treatment

Methadone dependence affects thousands of individuals. According to the National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services, the number of clients receiving methadone increased from approximately 227,000 in 2003 to over 306,000 in 2011. Although methadone is intended to help individuals recover from addiction to opiates such as heroin, many addiction specialists say methadone is more addictive than the drugs it replaces and is more difficult to quit than heroin.

Methadone is an opioid first developed as an alternative to morphine, and it became the standard replacement for heroin in the 1960s. Researchers realized methadone maintenance treatment helped reduce heroin cravings and severe withdrawal symptoms. When administered in the correct dose, methadone doesn't create a pleasurable high like other opiates. Methadone maintenance therapy has helped decrease some of the risks of intravenous drug use such as AIDS and hepatitis C.

Unfortunately, methadone is also highly addictive and dangerous. Without a doctor's careful monitoring, methadone drug abuse is a possibility. If you or a loved one have fallen into the methadone trap, help and hope are available to you.

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Understanding Methadone Addiction

If you struggle with a methadone addiction, your friends and family might not understand. After all, methadone is supposed to help your recovery, not make things worse. What does methadone do that makes it so addictive?

To provide a better understanding of how methadone works, we'll explore its effects and reasons it's difficult to stop.

1. Why Do People Take Methadone?

Why do people take methadone

People get methadone prescriptions for many reasons. Sometimes doctors prescribe methadone for pain relief, while other times they use methadone as a drug addiction treatment. As a part of an opioid treatment program, clients follow a doctor-recommended dosage schedule, decreasing the dosage until they stop taking the drug. After patients show signs of stability, they are sometimes sent home with methadone. Some individuals seek street methadone out of curiosity, in need of a strong painkiller or to help them quit other opiates. Without a prescription, methadone is both deadly and illegal.

Methadone changes how the brain and nervous system respond to pain. It decreases the pain of opiate withdrawal while blocking the euphoric effects of opiate drugs. Nevertheless, methadone is not the best solution for addiction treatment. Methadone is highly addictive because users become dependent on its pain-relieving qualities, and they rely on methadone to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Over time, users build a tolerance to methadone and might take a too-high dose to achieve the same level of relief from withdrawal symptoms or pain.

2. What Are the Risks of Methadone Use?

Methadone is dangerous because it takes time to reach its full effect. It takes about three hours for methadone to reach its peak, and a single dose can last anywhere from 24 to 36 hours. Because the peak effects aren't felt immediately, a methadone-dependent individual might take too much too soon, and this could easily lead to an overdose. Also, because methadone takes so long to wear off, users might not realize what they take now can cause an overdose hours later. In general, methadone carries the following risks:

  • Overdose
  • Respiratory depression
  • Heart rhythm problems

What are the risks of using methadone

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), methadone accounts for almost one in four prescription opioid-related deaths. Causes of a fatal methadone overdose include:

  • Unintentional overdose
  • Drug interaction
  • Cardiaotoxicity or heart damage resulting from harmful chemicals

Symptoms of an overdose include:

  • Small pupils
  • Shallow or slow breathing
  • Drowsiness
  • Clammy or blue skin
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Limp muscles
  • Seizure
  • Collapsing

If the individual does not get immediate medical attention, the overdose can be fatal or lead to brain damage. Individuals with breathing problems like asthma or a lung disease like emphysema are advised not to take methadone. Individuals with a history of drug abuse, alcohol abuse or mental illness have a greater risk of a methadone overdose.

3. What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Methadone Addiction?

If you're abusing methadone, you'll experience similar effects as other opioid painkillers or drugs like heroin. Symptoms of opioid painkiller abuse include:

  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Slowed breathing
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Poor coordination

The following signs point to a methadone addiction:

  • You've developed a tolerance and take more of the drug to feel the effects.
  • You experience withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop taking methadone.
  • You focus on obtaining methadone however you can, even illegally.
  • You feel unable to control impulses to use methadone.
  • You feel like you need methadone to function.

If you're experiencing any of the above signs of methadone addiction, reach out to Tranquil Shores. Methadone addiction is a serious health issue requiring professional attention. At Tranquil Shores, we're committed to helping you overcome your addiction no matter how complex the situation. We have the knowledge and compassion to help you succeed.

If someone you know has a methadone addiction, you might be wondering how the addiction began or if it's something you should worry about. Even though doctors usually prescribe methadone as part of a monitored program, sometimes they prescribe methadone to treat severe pain from an injury or illness. It's possible your loved one obtains methadone illicitly as well. If you suspect a loved one is struggling with methadone addiction, you might notice the following signs:

  • Stealing prescriptions
  • Taking higher doses than prescribed
  • Changes in sleep
  • Hostility or drastic mood swings
  • Appearing drowsy, sedated or high
  • Demonstrating poor decision-making
  • Trying to get prescriptions from more than one doctor
  • Always losing prescriptions to get more
  • Stockpiling the drug so they can take higher doses later on

How to Get Help for Methadone Addiction

If you're wondering how to treat methadone addiction when it feels impossible to overcome on your own, don't give up hope. At Tranquil Shores, we know methadone addiction recovery is a challenge, but we're prepared to help you on your journey every step of the way.

1. Why Seek Rehab

If you're ready to stop a methadone addiction, it's best to go to a treatment center for help. Methadone withdrawal symptoms are difficult to cope with alone, and users might become discouraged without the right support. Likewise, withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous and should be monitored by a medical professional.

How to Get Help for Methadone Addiction

Methadone detoxification requires a decrease in dosage over time. Detox can take weeks or even months depending on how much you were taking. Detox schedules move at a slow pace to avoid unbearable withdrawal symptoms. Some medications such as buprenorphine might help reduce withdrawal symptoms. However, these must only be administered once the methadone dose has been lowered to a safe level.

Rehab provides a safe, supportive environment for medically-monitored detoxification. It also helps clients through the emotional and behavioral aspects of methadone addiction to help them recover long-term. Many people abuse drugs because they have underlying issues such as a mental health disorder. In rehab, clients meet in support groups and individually with counselors to address mental health issues that may have caused methadone addiction, and learn skills for dealing with triggers and stressful life events healthily.

2. Methadone Withdrawal Symptoms

Withdrawing from methadone is a difficult process and requires a doctor's supervision. Methadone stays in the system for days, prolonging detoxification. Users typically experience withdrawal symptoms within the first 30 hours of discontinuing use. At first, withdrawal symptoms resemble the flu, and may include the following symptoms:

  • Anxiety
  • Sweating
  • Runny nose
  • Yawning
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Watery eyes
  • Tiredness

These flu-like withdrawal symptoms last several days and peak after about three days. When symptoms peak, individuals might experience the following:

  • Chills
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Muscle aches
  • Depression
  • Hallucinations
  • Methadone cravings

Withdrawal symptoms are at their worst during the first week but can last even longer. Because withdrawal causes great discomfort, users are at risk of going back to the drug. Rehab helps individuals wean off the drug while providing the emotional support they need.

The Tranquil Shores Philosophy

If you're struggling with a methadone addiction and don't know where to turn or feel afraid to ask for help, let Tranquil Shores guide you in the right direction. At Tranquil Shores, we believe every individual deserves respect, compassion and the best care possible regardless of their addiction. Our values include:

  • Integrity:

    We believe in building trust by being honest, empathetic and reliable at all times with all of our clients and their family members. We follow through on our commitments and take responsibility for our actions. We say what we mean and do what we say, with genuine care for our clients, their families and each other.

  • Compassion:

    We strive to create a warm, caring environment, and to show every client they are valued and loved for who they are. We take the time to listen and talk through your concerns and needs. We want to understand every client at our treatment center, and we know understanding is achieved through compassionate and honest communication.

  • Respect:

    We treat our clients and each other as we wish to be treated, and we value everyone's contributions.

  • Gratitude:

    We're grateful to serve others, and we encourage our clients to share their wisdom and natural gifts with others as well.

  • Spirituality:

    We believe spirituality heals and adds meaning to our lives. We encourage each other to live authentically and in harmony with spiritual principles.

  • Excellence:

    We believe in providing the highest-quality care for our clients and exceeding their expectations. We're committed to continuously improving so we can be our best for our clients.

Therapies at Tranquil Shores

If you or a loved one is seeking methadone addiction help, Tranquil Shores offers a variety of treatment options to meet your needs. We understand everyone responds to treatment in their own way. Our goal is to develop a methadone treatment plan that works for you as an individual.

Our therapies are designed to empower our clients and help them gain an understanding of their addiction and themselves. Drug addiction impacts the body as a whole. Therefore, we aim to heal the body, mind and spirit affected by addiction.

Clients not only learn ways to manage painful emotions relating to their addiction and co-occurring disorders, but they also discover who they are. With the help of our compassionate and knowledgeable counselors, clients learn how to transform pain into a life of meaning and hope without the need for drugs.

Here are the different therapies we offer:

1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) explores negative thinking and behavioral patterns that influence substance abuse. During a CBT session, the client talks privately with their counselor to identify unhealthy thinking patterns and self-destructive behavior. Counselors help clients recognize triggers and teach positive coping strategies for long-term recovery.

At Tranquil Shores, we understand many individuals have co-occurring disorders, or a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder. Many clients experience depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and turn to drugs or alcohol for relief. Sometimes, addiction leads to mental health issues. CBT is a highly effective and long-lasting treatment for clients struggling with a range of mental health issues.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Methadone Addiction

2. Group Therapy

Group therapy sessions involve a group of clients and one or more counselors to address common problems group members share. As a client with a methadone addiction, you'll be surrounded by others going through the same struggle.

Group therapy may seem intimidating at first, but clients often find it to be a rewarding experience. As part of a group, it is comforting to know you're not alone in your addiction. You can see how others cope with their addictions. Group therapy gives clients hope because they see firsthand that recovery is possible.

3. Experiential Therapy

Experiential therapy asks individuals to re-enact or re-experience situations that caused them emotional pain. As they re-experience past situations through role-playing or other expressive forms, clients recognize negative thinking associated with past painful experiences. They get the chance to release negative emotions and replace them with positive feelings such as forgiveness or acceptance in a supportive environment. With a counselor's guidance, experiential therapy helps clients react to challenges from a different perspective, develop self-awareness and process emotions so they can make positive life decisions moving forward.

4. Didactic Group Therapy

Didactic group therapy is a treatment program designed to help clients recover from addiction through instructor-led group sessions. Unlike other forms of therapy which focus on the emotional aspect of addiction, didactic group therapy concentrates on rational thought, educating clients about substance abuse and sharing relapse prevention techniques and other topics to help clients understand the health impact of substance abuse. As with any group therapy setting, clients benefit from peer support and safe, encouraging interactions while learning factual information and healthy coping strategies. When combined with other therapies, such as CBT, didactic group therapy is a powerful tool.

5. Accelerated Resolution Therapy

Accelerated resolution therapy is a treatment method designed to help clients with PTSD. It's also effective as part of a treatment program for depression, anxiety and substance abuse. Accelerated resolution therapy involves a brief exercise using visualization techniques and other therapeutic approaches to expose the individual to a previous traumatic event. By re-experiencing a past trauma, the therapy helps desensitize the client to the traumatic event without trapping them in negative emotions. Traumatic experiences potentially lead to substance abuse. For example, more than two out of 10 veterans with PTSD also have a substance abuse disorder.

6. Family Therapy

Addiction puts a strain on family relationships. Sometimes, family relationships feel damaged beyond repair. However, there is hope for rebuilding trust and a strong bond with family members after addiction through family therapy.

No one family is the same. At Tranquil Shores, we tailor family therapy to the individual. As a client, you choose how you want to make your family part of your recovery. Each session aims to evaluate and understand family dynamics, address co-dependent behavior and rebuild relationships free of resentment to form a healthy, supportive network for your recovery.

Family Therapy for Methadone Addiction

7. Alternative Healing

Alternative therapies help clients release negative, stressful emotions and symptoms of depression and anxiety. Clients can carry alternative healing strategies with them for life and use them as a healthy way to deal with triggers.

For example, yoga teaches breathing techniques to help clients cope with stress, and it improves an overall sense of well-being. Meditation is a form of relaxation which helps clients clear their minds and gain new perspectives. Massage therapy helps relieve tension and releases serotonin and dopamine to improve depression symptoms. Clients at Tranquil Shores can choose to participate in any of these alternative healing activities:

  • Acupuncture
  • Drum therapy
  • Kai Chi Do
  • Massage therapy
  • Qigong
  • Yoga
  • Meditation

Continuing Care After Rehab

Treatment does not end once you leave Tranquil Shores. Recovery is a lifelong process, and we're here to guide you on your journey even after you leave our treatment center. Our E-therapy option keeps clients connected to their counselors once they make the transition home. Using teleconferencing, clients have private therapy sessions with the same counselors they got to know, trust and feel comfortable with during treatment. These sessions help clients continue their recovery and gives them the support, encouragement and compassion they need to meet challenges at home. Every client leaves our treatment center with an individualized aftercare plan.

Learn More About Addiction Treatment

Tranquil Shores is a private drug and alcohol treatment center in Madeira Beach, Fla. We're dedicated to providing individualized treatment plans focused on long-term success and healing. If you or your loved one struggles with an addiction to methadone or another substance, Tranquil Shores is here for you. Contact us to learn more about our treatments options and our relaxing setting can help you reclaim your life. Let us provide the support and comfort your family needs. Call 727-391-7001 or 877-566-1166 today.

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