Recovery Center Blog

5 Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

Written By Recovery Centers - April 15th, 2022
5 Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

If you are longing to break free from the cycle of addiction but find that your fear of the detox process is holding you back, know that you’re not alone. This is true for many people, and the fear is understandable.

The detox process can be extremely unpleasant and painful, and, depending upon what substance you were addicted to, it can even be fatal. As a result, it’s important to seek help so that you can detox with proper care and treatment.

Detoxing in a clean, supportive environment staffed by medical professionals will not only guarantee your health and safety but can also help set you up for long-term success so that you can avoid relapsing and repeating this process.

Depending upon what treatment facility you attend, you may be eligible for medication-assisted treatment (MAT) during the course of your detox. MAT is the use of certain FDA-approved medicines to help ease and manage the symptoms of withdrawal.

The relief that MAT can provide patients is invaluable. Here are 5 key benefits of medication-assisted treatment.

1. Safer & More Comfortable Withdrawal Process

While the severity of your symptoms will depend largely upon the degree of prior drug use and your substance of choice, the detox process can pose a serious risk to your health.

Alcohol withdrawal can lead to life-threatening fevers, seizures, hallucinations, or delirium tremens that can lead to cardiovascular collapse. Even opioid withdrawal which is often characterized as unpleasant but not life-threatening can be deadly.[1]

Medication-assisted therapy will help to mitigate the symptoms of withdrawal so that you can avoid these potentially fatal side effects. Even if your symptoms are not cause for alarm, MAT can help you to achieve a faster, smoother, and less painful recovery sooner rather than later.

2. Improved Sobriety Retention

The medications that have been FDA approved for the treatment of opioid and alcohol abuse disorders are safe to take long-term. Disulfiram, naltrexone, methadone, buprenorphine, and acamprosate all function similarly by acting as either a physical deterrent or an emotional deterrent by changing the way that your body reacts to drugs and alcohol.[2]

By blunting your body’s reaction to either opioids or alcohol, the medication effectively takes away the rush of use. Without the rush of feel-good chemicals you might have had before, you will likely experience fewer cravings preventing future relapse.

Research backs this claim and many studies have shown that it also helps with social integration in addition to long-term retention of sobriety![3]

3. Improved Survival Rates

Tragically, many lose their lives to addiction even after achieving sobriety once. Relapse is often deadly, but MAT is so effective in preventing relapse altogether, that it also helps to prevent drug and alcohol-related deaths.

In one study conducted in 2009, heroin-related deaths decreased in the area by 37% after buprenorphine became available in Baltimore.[3] By reducing the rate of relapse, MAT can help prevent addiction-related deaths from direct overdose, illness contracted from unclean needles, car accidents, and other complications.

MAT is not, as some may mistakenly claim, the substitution of one addiction for another. This is a very common myth about medication-assisted treatment. Rather, medications such as buprenorphine can prove to be highly effective tools in your battle against addiction.

4. Healthier Babies

Another devastating effect of addiction can be difficulty in conceiving and carrying healthy babies to term. Additionally, babies who are carried to term by parents living in addiction are often born. Another study showed that medication-assisted treatment was effective in preventing neonatal abstinence syndrome.[4]

If you are thinking of trying to conceive and want to ensure the healthiest long-term future for you and your little one, then MAT could help you achieve that goal.

5. Overall Improved Quality of Life

One of the most important benefits of medication-assisted treatment for your addiction is the peace of mind it can give you as you move forward. Freedom from drug and alcohol abuse means having peace of mind as you move forward and rediscover your passion for life.

You are entitled to enjoy the fruits of your hard-won sobriety free from the looming worry of relapse and nagging cravings. When MAT is incorporated into a diverse long-term recovery plan, it can give you the confidence you need to rebuild your self-esteem and maintain your recovery for years to come.

Experience the Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) For Yourself With Recovery Centers

If you are considering your treatment options but feel overwhelmed by the decision, at Recovery Centers, we are here to help. Our trained professionals can aid you in weighing your options and finding a reputable treatment center that offers medication-assisted treatment if that is something you are interested in.

Whatever your treatment needs, we make finding the right addiction treatment program to meet those needs simple so that you can stay focused on the life-changing work of recovery. Don’t wait any longer to get the help that you deserve. Make a free, confidential phone call to Recover Centers to discuss your options today.