Methadone is a narcotic that is very effective and powerful, fitting into the same category as heroin. Opioids is the actual category, also known as opiates. Methadone is used in treatment programs for addictions to other drugs because it is an extremely safe drug and can be used in a rigorous treatment plan. It has been used for over three decades as it has served the needs of the opioid-related addicts. There have been some cases of Methadone addiction. This will be discussed subsequent to gaining an understanding of how it works.
Methadone is believed to prevent morphine or other narcotics like heroin from attaching and allowing interactions with receptors for use as painkillers. These receptors are natural and they are known for raising endorphin levels. Methadone ensures that the desired chemical effects of these addictive drugs are not allowed to occur and their addictive natures are blocked. A physical craving is that can be triggered by the narcotics isn’t allowed with Methadone. Methadone can however create a set of its own side effects that produce drowsiness and light euphoria. These feelings can last a day or two but are nothing like the depressions that come from the other opiates. Functions that have been negatively affected by the use of narcotics can be restored with Methadone treatment like immune, adrenal and sexual functions.
The highly effective therapeutic nature of Methadone has established as a credentialed treatment for rehabilitating narcotic addicts. Most drug maintenance programs use methadone orally because it has been proven useful in moving the addict away from the destructive lifestyle under which they have been living.
Typically, to initiate detox, a higher does at the 15-100mg levels in an oral solution is administered and then slowly reduced as the addict demonstrates less of a dependency on it. Finally, the treatment can be suspended. Administering by injection is only done in the rare cases where the patient isn’t able to take the methadone orally. Use of IV fluid infusion of Methadone may be used in the rarest of circumstances with the proper medical supervision.
Methadone use does have some side effects like those that most every drug can. If seen these side effects should be reported, including:
Difficulty in breathing
Skin turning cold or clammy
Feeling of confusion or faintness
Feeling restless or nervous
A difficulty in urine passing
These side effects don’t need immediate attention unless they become painful or too hard to deal with:
Blurred kind of vision
Clumsiness in movements
Problem of constipation
Feeling of dizziness or fainting spell
Extremely dry mouth
Flushing and headaches
Nausea or vomiting
Methadone addiction became an issue in the 1990s and evolved into a serious concern. Overdoses of Methadone were also seen, making the awareness escalate with dramatic impact. Drug addicts were switching their “addiction” to an easier to obtain drug of choice. A substitute for Methadone was approved by the FDA, Buprenorphine. As a narcotic, as well it has exhibited a higher level of effectiveness in curbing withdrawal symptoms in addicts. Another substitute has been developed in addition known as Levomethadyl acetate.