Some individuals believe using mediation-assisted treatment or MAT for drug addiction is trading one addiction for another. However, research from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has shown using medications like suboxone for treating addiction could help people stay in treatment longer, increase periods of sobriety and set the path for successful recovery.

What is MAT?

The process of healing and recovering from addiction is marked by strong drug cravings, even after someone has detoxed and gone through treatment. The cravings are normal for people who struggle to become and remain clean and can interfere with treatment and make relapse more likely. Fortunately, with MAT, people can receive medication to stabilize themselves, stop the cravings, alleviate withdrawal and gradually taper down on the dose to become clean.

What are the Protocols for MAT?

If a person decides to go into a MAT program, the first thing that will happen is an intake assessment by a suboxone doctor. The goal of an intake assessment is to make a proper diagnosis of prescription drug addiction, to evaluate the extent of someone’s addiction and to make sure there are no co-occurring mental or physical health issues. Once a person has gone through a successful assessment, a suboxone doctor will determine a dosage and treatment can begin.

Treatment Doesn’t Stop with Medication:

Medication-assisted treatment isn’t enough to help someone achieve and maintain long-term sobriety and abstinence. While MAT will help someone become stabilized from prescription drug addiction, a person will need whole person treatment which could include behavioral therapy, education, relapse prevention and continued MAT. Using medications for treating prescription drug addiction isn’t a miracle cure, but with time and the right MAT program, someone can learn how to break away from addiction and recover the chance to live a normal life again.

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