Medication-Assisted Treatment for Fentanyl Addiction 

Fentanyl is a synthetic narcotic opioid painkiller that is most often used to help reduce and prevent pain after surgery or any other type of medical procedure. Fentanyl is often compared to morphine; however, the effects of fentanyl are more potent, which makes it highly effective in relieving severe and/or chronic pain. This substance works by binding to the opioid receptors that are in the brain, which can be found in areas of the brain that are known for controlling pain and emotions. Once fentanyl connects to these opioid receptors, the levels of dopamine in the brain increase and are released to the brain’s reward areas, which ultimately causes the onset of feelings of relaxation and euphoria. The pleasurable effects and highly addictive properties of fentanyl make this substance one that possesses great risk for abuse. As is true for other opioids, as soon as an addiction to or dependence on fentanyl develops, it can be tremendously challenging for an individual to overcome.

Thankfully, there are options for treatment that are available that can help fentanyl users stop their dangerous habits. Medication-assisted treatment is one form of treatment that can help individuals who are struggling with an addiction to this prescription painkiller make their first steps towards recovery. Medication-assisted treatment includes the implementation of specific medications that have proven to be highly effective in decreasing cravings, preventing withdrawal symptoms, and stopping the harmful effects of opioids that come from continued abuse of drugs like fentanyl. By consuming these medications under the supervision of certified professionals, individuals can develop the peace of mind required to begin their journeys toward recovery.

At Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers, our qualified and trained staff of mental health and medical professionals are able to both implement and supervise this form of effective treatment so that women and men who are battling a fentanyl addiction can reclaim control over their lives. Here at Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers, we want to help you live a life that is happy, healthy, well-balanced, and free from fentanyl addiction.

Types of Treatment Offered at Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers

Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers, a network of providers who supply outpatient care, offer medication-assisted treatment to adults ages 18 and older who are struggling with addictions to fentanyl or other types of opioids. The highly talented and compassionate teams of nurses, counselors, and doctors at Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers are devoted to establishing a personalized treatment plan for each patient that meets his or her needs while he or she is entrusted in our care. The variety of medication-assisted treatments and therapeutic interventions supplied at Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers include:

Methadone: Considerable research has proven the safety and effectiveness of methadone when used for treating opioid addictions and when consumed as prescribed and under the supervision of certified healthcare providers. Methadone is effective because it interacts with the same receptors in the brain that are triggered through the presence of opioids like fentanyl, yet does not cause the same euphoric high to develop. Therefore, patients can consume methadone safely and still go to work or school, drive a car, and engage in all other tasks throughout their daily lives without being high or suffering from all-consuming cravings for fentanyl or the upsetting symptoms of withdrawal that can occur when fentanyl use stops.

Suboxone: Suboxone, which received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in 2002 for use in medication-assisted opioid addiction treatment programs, is a brand name medication that works by diminishing cravings for fentanyl and fighting off withdrawal symptoms without causing the user to get high like they would when abusing fentanyl. Suboxone contains buprenorphine and naloxone. Buprenorphine prevents against withdrawal symptoms and cravings, and naloxone prevents abuse and overdose.

Subutex (buprenorphine): Just like Suboxone, Subutex also contains buprenorphine, which lessens the intensity of fentanyl withdrawal symptoms and cravings without causing the disorienting high that is connected to the abuse of the substance. Different from Suboxone, Subutex does not contain naloxone. In many medication-assisted treatment programs, patients will begin their treatment on Subutex before transitioning over to Suboxone for long-term maintenance.

Individual therapy: At Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers, we feel that in order for medication-assisted treatment regimens to be successful in the long run, therapeutic services are also required to help individuals who are battling addictions to fentanyl. While these medications work to offer mental clarity and cognitive relief by reducing the physical symptoms of addiction, individual therapy can play the critical role of helping patients address the psychological, behavioral, and emotional aspects that added to or stemmed from their fentanyl use. Individual therapy is designed to be a time for patients to work one-on-one with a counselor to talk through their treatment progress, as well as to discuss any other issues that arise.

Group therapy: Serving as a complement to the individual therapy sessions that our patients receive, Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers also supply group therapy sessions that are able to offer helpful and supportive interpersonal interactions within a supervised therapeutic environment. By partaking in these sessions with others who are also struggling with addictions to fentanyl and other substances, patients can make tremendous progress in their recovery by receiving and providing personal insights, encouragement, and support to and from their peers. All group therapy sessions are conducted by counselors who are capable of offering informative, structured, and empathetic sessions that are beneficial to all who participate.

Why Consider Treatment at Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers

The abuse of fentanyl can cause people to grow vulnerable to experiencing many dangerous consequences. From a physical standpoint, individuals who abuse this substance have been known to struggle with serious gastrointestinal problems, immune system depression, and overpowering feelings of sedation that can impact their daily lives. Fentanyl abuse also leads to a lack of motivation and can change an individual’s overall personality, which can result in the user becoming unable to effectively fulfill obligations and responsibilities at work, which can lead to unemployment. Financial troubles have also been known to impact those who are addicted to fentanyl, and the loss of healthy relationships with friends and family has also been known to happen. Serious changes in mood are common in those who abuse fentanyl, as are increased levels of paranoia, delusions, and hallucinations. Luckily, by obtaining the appropriate treatment interventions, these consequences can be defeated or completely avoided.

While overcoming a fentanyl addiction can seem nearly impossible for those who have found themselves stuck in the cycle of abuse, there are ways to defeat it. At Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers, our knowledgeable and committed experts are ready and able to help you or someone you love make the decisions required to help confront addiction, overcome the compulsion to abuse fentanyl, and return to living a happy, healthy life.