When struggling with addiction or mental illness of any sort, we understand how frustrating it can be to find successful treatment. From meeting the right therapist to choosing a treatment center, it can become increasingly difficult to find a treatment method that works for you. Rather than solely seeking medication for physical addiction, it is important to consider the effects it has on mental health as well. Contemporary research indicates that those struggling with addiction have an increased rate of co-occurring mental illness. Addiction itself is an abnormal condition affecting the brain and behavior, moreover the inability to overcome it can cause disastrous declines in mental health. This is where medication assisted treatment comes into play.
What is Medication Assisted Treatment?
Medication assisted treatment is a holistic approach to treating addiction. It includes the use of medication in tandem with counseling and therapy in order to provide the patient with effective and long lasting treatment. In other words, medical assisted treatment (MAT) not only treats the patient’s addiction, but can sustain recovery, prevent potential overdose, and improve their mental health as well.
Treatment and Diagnosis
Before getting into how medication assisted treatment works, it is important to understand just how significant this sort of treatment is when it comes to addiction and mental illness. More often than not, co-occurring disorders are difficult to diagnose. Many patients will receive treatment for one disorder while the other is left untreated. As a result, lasting sobriety becomes increasingly unachievable.
In addition, those struggling with addiction, who are failing to receive the treatment they need, are at an increased risk for committing impulsive or even violent acts. This unhealthy behavior can lead to countless consequences such as homelessness, legal trouble, or even suicide. With this in mind, the successful diagnosis of these co-occurring conditions is necessary for their successful treatment. Thankfully, medication assisted treatment can make integrated care possible.
How MAT Works
The process of behavioral therapy can be easily understood in practice (identifying and avoiding potentially unhealthy behaviors); however, what about medication-assisted treatment? There may be a wide variety of medications that are used to treat addiction, yet they all function in one of two ways:
The medication binds to opioid receptors in the brain which in turn activates them. In fact, this is precisely how opioids work on the brain, just to a much lesser extent.
The medication blocks the receptors in the brain that cause feelings of pleasure. This prevents the patient from experiencing the euphoria they usually feel when using, which may prove to make the addictive substance less appealing to them.
Benefits and Recovery
Medication assisted treatment has proven to be clinically effective in treating addiction and mental illness. With that said, many patients have experienced significant success with this comprehensive method, some even to the status of full recovery.
However, not only is recovery possible, but an entire host of subsequent benefits such as an increased life expectancy, a decrease in illicit substance use, an easier time gaining and maintaining employment, and an improvement in birth outcomes. Clearly, medication assisted treatment can not only save your life, but enrich it as well.
Are You Ready to Start Your Treatment Journey?
If you are struggling with addiction and mental illness, Quantum Behavioral Health Services can provide the medication assisted treatment you need. We offer a multitude of treatment modalities that are tailored to fit your specific needs and goals.
Each option has been carefully designed to not only get you well but most importantly keep you well. Above all, we encourage you to reach out to us today and enroll in our dedicated treatment programs.