What is Methadone Abuse?

What is Methadone Abuse?


Opioid addiction is a serious problem in society today. Heroin and opioid prescription medications are heavily abused. The withdrawal symptoms experienced can be extremely uncomfortable and often encourage the user to relapse. While Methadone Maintenance Treatment (MMT) can reduce withdrawal symptoms, there are other methods that may pose less physical and emotional risks.



Used as a drug-replacement therapy, methadone abuse is becoming an issue among opioid addicts.

What is Methadone Maintenance Treatment (MMT)?


Methadone Maintenance Treatment (MMT) is a treatment program that entails prescribing Methadone for long periods of time as an opioid alternative. Unfortunately, this can lead to methadone abuse. Methadone is an opioid agonist. It works to reduce withdrawal symptoms, reduce opioid cravings, and eliminate the high experienced from opioids. MMT only addressed opioid dependence; it does nothing for the psychological problems associated with addiction. An individual on a Methadone Maintenance Treatment programs receives the drug once a day. There are three phases of MMT: stabilization, action and maintenance and tapering. A physician and pharmacist are involved in each phase of the treatment. The progression of the stages falls upon the patient and their ability to adhere to the recommendations made throughout the process.


Methadone Abuse


Besides the potential positive benefits of Methadone, there is a high risk for abuse and addiction. Methadone dependence can occur when a person takes more than prescribed. Methadone abuse often occurs when they continue to experience opioid cravings while on a Methadone maintenance program. While people don’t experience the same “high” caused by opioids, Methadone can elicit a medicated induced sense of well-being and happiness. This often results in an individual taking Methadone longer than necessary, taking higher doses than prescribed, and developing dependence, tolerance and an addiction to the drug. Along with addiction there is a risk of overdose, there have been fatalities reported after people have injected Methadone.


Side Effects of Methadone Abuse


– Decreased heart rate
– Decreased blood pressure
– Decreased body temperature
– Increased sweating
– Shallow breathing
– Difficulty walking and talking
– Depressive thoughts
– Muscle aches
– Anxiety
– Irritability


Becoming Addicted to Methadone


Methadone has the ability to decrease withdrawal symptoms, reduce cravings and prevent relapse. While these are all positive outcomes, the individual may become addicted to Methadone in the process. Methadone Maintenance Therapy is not for everyone, they do not offer a long-term solution to drug abuse. There are other methods to help an individual suffering from opioid addiction, methods that do not include replacing one drug for another. For more information about Opioid detox and how to get help in recovery, do not hesitate to contact us at (888)357-7577.