Medication assisted treatment has long been an alternative to a strictly abstinence-based treatment approach. Since the 1970’s medication assisted treatment has been an option for those struggling with substance use disorders. In recent years there have been advancements in medication assisted treatment options for those, especially those struggling with opioids. With the different options arising, it’s important to discuss them with a substance use disorder professional. There are also many treatment centers are now offering medication assisted treatment to their patients. Medication assisted treatment is an important and life-changing resource for many people that have long struggled with chronic relapse and opioid use.

What is Medication Assisted Treatment?

Medication assisted treatment (MAT) is not solely a medication program. MAT is the use of medications that curb opiate and opioid cravings, reduce withdrawal symptoms, and some medications also block the euphoric effect of opiates alongside counseling and behavioral therapies. In conjunction with the use of medication and therapy, the support of 12-step fellowships is a part of GH Recovery’s MAT program.

Medications used in MAT programs are FDA approved and have undergone extensive research and clinical studies. MAT programs are often utilized for those that struggle with opioids like heroin, and prescription drugs that contain opiates.

Medication Assisted Treatment Options at GH Recovery Solutions

  1. Suboxone
  2. Sublocade
  3. Naltrexone
  4. Vivitrol

What is Suboxone

Suboxone is a sublingual film that contains buprenorphine and naloxone. Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist – meaning it activates some of the opioid receptors in the brain. Since the buprenorphine activates some opioid receptors it helps to reduce cravings for opioids and alleviates withdrawal symptoms.

There is a high chance of addiction, abuse, and diversion with buprenorphine. Buprenorphine is also a long-lasting medication. Therefore it is easy to overdose on due to its potency and long half-life.

The makers of Suboxone combined buprenorphine and naloxone to help alleviate negative side effects associated with buprenorphine alone. Naloxone is used to treat opioid overdoses. Naloxone is an important part of Suboxone that blocks the euphoric effects of opioids and discourages abuse of suboxone. While someone in a MAT program is taking Suboxone and uses an opioid, they will not get high.

The combination of buprenorphine and naloxone in Suboxone works well for people who are participating in a MAT program. Suboxone allows for people who have struggled with chronic relapse to live a life free of cravings and impending withdrawal symptoms. Suboxone is a great alternative to other MAT options that don’t have naloxone. When Suboxone is taken with therapy and support groups such as 12-step fellowships the rates of long-term recovery are higher.

What is Sublocade?

Sublocade is a once-monthly injection of buprenorphine. While similar to the popular MAT option of Vivitrol in how Sublocade is administered to clients, they are extremely different. Sublocade only contains buprenorphine. Sublocade is administered one a month by a certified healthcare provider. At GH Recovery Solutions, we have a certified healthcare provider that administers Sublocade to our clients.

Sublocade gradually releases into the body to help block the effects of other opioids and reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Buprenorphine is an opioid that has a high abuse rate, but in a controlled once-monthly shot, the potential for abuse is non-existent. There is no way to speed the release of Sublocade in the body. Sublocade is a great option for people who have tried Suboxone in the past and had trouble with medication management.

Sublocade combined with therapy, and 12-step fellowships to create an entire client approach at GH Recovery Solutions. Although we can treat the body and rid it of opioids or help to reduce cravings, the behaviors also have to be addressed. Sublocade is an effective and easy option for those wishing to explore other MAT options at GH Recovery Solutions.

What is Naltrexone

Naltrexone is an oral medication used for the treatment of opioid use disorders. Naltrexone also goes by the brand name Revia and Vivitrol. Naltrexone works differently from Suboxone, which activates opioid receptors in the body that will suppress cravings. Naltrexone works in the body by binding and blocking opioids receptors. By naltrexone blocking opioid receptors it helps to curb cravings for opioids.

Naltrexone is a MAT option that is wonderful for people who do not want to be on addictive medication. Naltrexone allows for more freedom from addiction for some struggling with opioid use disorders. With naltrexone, there is a daily dose, but there aren’t any ill side effects of withdrawal that can occur with other MAT options. Naltrexone can cause a reduced tolerance to opioids that clients may not be aware of when starting the program.

Another common issue with naltrexone is that if someone chooses to go back to illicit opioids or prescription drugs, relapse can occur. Clients taking naltrexone in a MAT program cannot bypass the effects of the medication. If someone taking naltrexone attempts to get high, they will not feel the euphoric effects of the opioid, but an overdose can still occur.

At GH Recovery Solutions, our expert staff will go over the best option for our clients’ MAT path that best fits their personalized treatment plan.

What is Vivitrol?

Vivitrol is a once-monthly shot of naltrexone that blocks the effects of opioids. Vivitrol is used in people that have already completed detox from opioids and or other MAT options like Suboxone. The Vivitrol shot is like the pill but offers extra security in that it doesn’t have to be taken every day like the naltrexone pill.

Vivitrol only blocks the effects of opiates and helps to reduce cravings. Unlike other MAT options, it has no opioids in it as Suboxone and Sublocade do. There is no potential for abuse with Vivitrol. Having no abuse potential is comforting for those who have abuse MAT medications. Vivitrol has been proven very effective in lowering rates of returning to opioid dependence.

Vivitrol works by blocking the opioid receptors in the brain. There will be no euphoric feeling if opioids are used and someone is receiving the Vivitrol shot. The euphoric feelings from opioid use are one of the reasons that people return to drug use. Combining therapy, a 12-step fellowship, and a once-monthly Vivitrol shot many people can have long-lasting sobriety from opioids. There are no withdrawal symptoms associated with Vivitrol. After discussing with an addiction professional, Vivitrol can be stopped with no adverse side effects.

Vivitrol is a fantastic MAT option that has benefitted many of our clients at GH Recovery Solutions.

Five Things You Should Know About MAT at GH Recovery Solutions

It’s important to know what the options are for a MAT program, but also what will work best for you. At GH Recovery Solutions, we create a personalized treatment plan for each client that comes to us. Everyone deserves a chance to pave their path to long-term recovery.

    1. All decisions about a MAT program are made with medical professionals. There are many options, and there can be adverse side effects to any medication. Medical professionals will help clients to choose the best MAT option for them. We don’t leave that decision up solely to clients.
    2. We utilize a whole client approach in our MAT program. At GH Recovery, we have a strong focus on therapy and 12-step fellowships. Our MAT program is only one part of a personalized treatment approach. We know that addiction to opioids is mental and physical addiction. We treat all aspects of addiction and give clients the coping skills necessary to stay on the path to long-term sobriety.
    3. We offer four types of medication for MAT. Everyone has walked a different path to our doors, and everyone can have a different path to sobriety. We offer options for MAT because we understand that what works for one person may not work for another. At GH Recovery Solutions, we offer Suboxone, Sublocade, Naltrexone, and Vivitrol for our clients if they chose to participate in our MAT program.
    4. GH Recovery Solutions has a family program that can help families understand our treatment approach, including our MAT program. MAT programs can seem strange to families if they don’t understand what exactly it is that the medications do. Our family program allows for education and healing to take place between clients and their families.
    5. At GH Recovery Solutions we don’t force particpation in our MAT program. We know the benefits of MAT for some clients, and we know that some have concerns when it comes to MAT programs. We educate our clients on the benefits, side effect, and options that we offer in our MAT program. All decisions are made with the client’s best interests in mind. We have our professional medical staff to help guide clients on their treatment path. Case managers are also informed to help clients set up aftercare options that are available for MAT clients after they leave our program.

    How to Attend GH Recovery Solutions Medication Assisted Treatment Program

    At GH Recovery Solutions, we are in-network with many insurance providers. We are dedicated to helping every person who calls our admissions team. We will walk you through the admissions process from start to finish. Contact us today at 888-345-2025. You can heal, we can help.