Methadone Addiction: Features And Symptoms

Methadone is a synthetic opium drug. The substance is widely used in medicine as an analgesic, as well as for the treatment of heroin addiction (in substitution therapy). In therapeutic doses, methadone has a sedative and analgesic effect, and tolerance to this substance develops slowly. An overdose of methadone in a person causes serious disruptions in the work of the cardiovascular system, suppressed breathing, pulmonary edema, acute renal failure, impaired consciousness (there are often cases when a person falls into a coma).

Many people consider methadone a safe and harmless drug, and therefore initially choose it to get a “high” without negative consequences for the body. Some drug addicts, trying to get rid of drug addiction on their own, take methadone instead of other drugs and they also become addicted to it.

Methadone is less euphoric than other opioid drugs. Often drug addicts take this substance in parallel with other psychoactive drugs, from which they develop polyaddiction.

With long-term use of methadone, a person develops methadone addiction, which the patient cannot get rid of on his own. In such a situation, it is advisable to seek help at methadone clinics near me from a narcologist who will prescribe effective and safe treatment.

At the very beginning, from taking methadone, a person does not experience vivid euphoria, a feeling of calmness, well-being, self-confidence comes to him, the emotional state becomes stable, and the mood becomes positive. At the same time, the person using methadone retains clarity of thinking and the speed of all reactions, he is ready to “do” great things and achieve success in life. It is this condition in most cases that pushes people to prolonged drug use.

After a few days, the positive effect of taking the drug disappears. A person becomes unsure of himself, feels constant psychological discomfort, he has anxiety and fears about this. To calm the face, gradually increase the daily dose of methadone and the frequency of the drug intake.

Addiction appears after 2-3 weeks of regular use of this drug. For experienced drug addicts, the term may be much shorter. Typically, after 2-3 months, the addicted person switches from oral methadone to intravenous injections. At this stage, the patient becomes less active, fussy and irritable, he takes on several tasks at the same time and does not bring them to the end, he is constantly late everywhere.

After about a year after that, the addict stops enjoying the methadone intake. He retains a constant feeling of fear and panic, and the need for thrill increases. On the basis of this, patients begin to additionally use other drugs, alcohol, sedatives and sleeping pills, thereby only aggravating the existing situation. However, a person cannot refuse to take methadone due to the developed physiological and mental dependence. Often, methadone addicts die from an overdose, AIDS, hepatitis, poisoning with toxic substances, and sudden respiratory arrest.

Withdrawal syndrome with methadone addiction is very difficult for a drug addict. The first signs of withdrawal appear after 1-2 doses of the substance: irritability, nervous tension, groundless fear, anxiety, strong craving for methadone as a sedative. Persistent withdrawal symptoms develop after a month or two of regular drug use.

Symptoms of methadone withdrawal:

  • Violations of the cardiovascular;
  • Nausea, vomiting;
  • Body pain, severe aches in muscles and joints;
  • Lachrymation;
  • Difficulty breathing due to nasal congestion;
  • Confusion of consciousness;
  • The appearance of hallucinations (visual, auditory);
  • Excessive aggression or outagression;
  • Increased irritability;
  • The appearance of psychosis;
  • Sleep disturbances (insomnia, nightmares);
  • Decreased appetite.

If you notice similar symptoms in your loved one, immediately seek help from a doctor. Only a qualified specialist can quickly and safely relieve withdrawal symptoms, improve the patient’s well-being, and prescribe effective therapy. Otherwise, the consequences can be the most unpredictable and sad.

In most countries, substitution therapy is not used to treat methadone addiction – this is strictly prohibited by current legislation. To combat the disease in modern methadone clinics, complex therapy is used, including drug treatment, work with psychotherapists, and rehabilitation in specialized centers.

Treatment of methadone addiction in methadone clinics near me is carried out in a round-the-clock narcological hospital, where patients are under the constant supervision of medical personnel. First, the patient undergoes classical detoxification of the body to relieve withdrawal symptoms and improve the general condition of the patient. Severe addicts may be prescribed ultra-rapid opioid detoxification under general anesthesia.

After the diagnosis, the dependent person is prescribed drugs that stimulate the work of the heart, lungs, kidneys, and nervous system. The doctor may prescribe intravenous injections of saline solution, complex vitamins, nootropics, and sedatives. To eliminate psychosis, antipsychotics are used.

In parallel with drug treatment, the patient undergoes a course of individual or group psychotherapy. The psychotherapists of a methadone clinic help the patient to understand the problem, teach him how to deal with it and resist temptations.

Treatment of methadone addiction is a complex and lengthy process. The duration of treatment for methadone addicts is 6 months or more. At the end of treatment, it is very important to undergo a rehabilitation course in a rehabilitation center, where a person will be taught to live without drugs and help him quickly return to society.

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