Close this search box.

News & Events

How Does Methadone Work for Opioid Use Disorder?

Methadone is a synthetic narcotic that has been used to treat opioid use disorder for more than 50 years. During that time it has proven to be both safe and effective when used as prescribed. There is hope to regain their lives, but a rigorous treatment program is necessary. How does Methadone work for opioid use disorder?

How Methadone Helps Opioid Dependence

Methadone is a man-made opioid that reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms and blocks the effects of opioids. It blocks the brain receptors affected by opiates like heroin and morphine. If taken through a supervised program, it helps those with addiction to end their dependence on these drugs but without painful withdrawal which can be quite dangerous.

Importantly, it reduces the cravings that can lead to a relapse and without the euphoria that results from opioids use. Patients are able to function again without drug cravings.

Methadone does not impair cognitive functions and has no adverse effects on mental capability, intelligence, and employability. In addition, it is not a sedative and does not interfere with normal activities like driving a car or operating machinery.

How Can Patients Access Methadone?

Methadone is approved by the FDA to treat opioid use disorder and pain management. It is only one part of a treatment plan including counseling and other behavioral therapies.

Only a certified Opioid Treatment Program (OTP) via the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) can dispense Methadone under the supervision of a qualified healthcare provider.

More Facts About Methadone

If you or someone you know is suffering from opioid use disorder, take note of the following facts:

  • Methadone is customized for each patient.
  • It is safe and effective when used as prescribed.
  • The doses can be adjusted and readjusted as needed.
  • Be cautious as the active ingredients of Methadone remain in the body even after the effects wear off. Some other medications can interact with Methadone and cause heart problems.
  • An overdose can occur if not taken as prescribed.
  • Pregnant women can safely take Methadone.
  • Do not consume alcohol while taking Methadone.

Common side effects include restlessness, constipation, nausea and vomiting, slow breathing, itchy skin, and sexual problems.

If you or someone you know is interested in a Certified Opioid Treatment Program in the Statesboro area, contact Reliance Treatment Center of Statesboro at (912) 489-7827. You can alternatively request an appointment through our secure online form.