Addiction is complex, but it is treatable. No single treatment is right for all people. Currently, for opioid addictions, medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, is considered the best approach. MAT drugs can reduce a person’s cravings for opioids, as well as decrease withdrawal symptoms. MAT is combined with counseling and other behavioral therapies that address social and emotional needs.
MAT involves medications such as methadone, buprenorphine and naltrexone:
- Methadone is available through clinics. It prevents withdrawal. Methadone is regulated and dispensed as part of an opioid treatment program.
- Buprenorphine can be administered by qualified physicians in office settings. It also reduces withdrawal symptoms.
- Naltrexone can also be administered in physician office settings. Naltrexone blocks the effects of opioid drugs and may reduce cravings.