Anti addiction medication has gradually emerged to become a potential treatment option for the drug and alcohol addiction programs of some rehab patients. The rationale behind prescribing such a treatment is that pharmaceuticals can provide physiological support in helping addicts to beat their cravings. However, anti addiction medication is never prescribed lightly.
Common Medication Types
Whether treating addiction to alcohol, drugs, or nicotine, there is a pharmaceutical that can provide support. For heroin addicts, a drug like methadone is used to replace the other drug in the short-run. Meanwhile, TA-CD is a vaccine designed to support cocaine users. There are many different options to cope with the world’s many substance addictions.
In the US, there are only four types of anti addiction medication for alcohol addicts. Naltrexone is the most utilized and is prescribed as an intramuscular injection taken monthly. The other three options are acamprosate, disulfiram, and an oral form of naltrexone.
For treating alcohol addiction, naltrexone has been used since as far back as the 1980s. Early researchers found that the drug was capable of easing the suffering of cravings and reducing the pleasure experienced while drinking. In turn, this helped addicts to reduce the extent of their drinking.
How the Medication Works
There are four prevailing functions that are found among the various types of anti addiction medication. Knowing each of them is vital in understanding, broadly speaking, how the medications work. Each has been presented below:
- Substance replacement – Methadone is a prime example of this treatment form. But the problem is that methadone can often replace the heroin addiction.
- Discomfort during consumption – Instead of the body breaking down a substance as normal, a drug like antabuse will make the user feel ill after consumption.
- Brain protection – Specialist vaccines can stop substances from reaching the brain and thereby prevent addicts from experiencing the dangerous highs that encourage addictive behavior.
- Craving eradication – Pharmaceuticals can eradicate the physical cravings suffered, but treatment is still required to beat the mental cravings.
Dangerous Myths to Ignore
New forms of treatment, no matter what they might be, generally inspire some doubts from the wider world. And in the case of anti addictive drugs, these have also led people to cast misled doubts that later morph into incorrect myths that need to be busted. Take a moment to read the most common myths surrounding anti addiction medication below.
One of the most dangerous myths is that addicts believe that the pills will provide a quick fix to beating their drug and/or alcohol usage. Quite simply, there is no way that an addict can take medication as their only means of combating their addiction.
Expanding on the first myth, the second is also dangerous in that someone could believe that the medication is all they will ever need during their recovery. The simple fact of the matter is that they will also require counseling, detoxification, and a healthier lifestyle. In short, they need a holistic approach that treats their entire being.
Myth number three is that a recovering addict can never become addicted again. Whether using anti drug addiction medicine or anti alcohol addiction medications, there is still a multitude of options across both treatment categories. As a result, the ultimate form of treatment differs from addiction to addiction. Therefore, it is still possible to become addicted to a different substance later on in life.
The final myth is that pharmaceutical treatments will make it easy to beat an addiction. However, the hard truth is that beating an addiction will never be easy. Alongside your pharmaceutical treatment, you will also need to live healthier and talk about your problems. Each day might be a struggle during the first two years of recovery.
Possible Side Effects and Complications
An issue for some vaccines is that they won’t work for everyone, and later they can even lose their level of effectiveness. In the case of naltrexone, this pharmaceutical can negate the function of pain medication and also increase the sensitivity of opioid receptors, making overdose a greater risk.
Generally speaking, there are varied side effects and complications depending on which drug is prescribed for addiction treatment. Always check with a medical professional before starting a course of anti addiction pharmaceuticals.
Complementary Treatment is Required
As stated earlier, addicts are in need of psychological treatment to beat the mental cravings that drive them to consumer damaging substances like drugs or alcohol. Without dealing the root of the problem, there will always be a risk of relapse in the future. And in considering mental cravings, an addict’s environment also plays a pivotal role in addiction.
Psychological treatment is the fundamental treatment needed alongside anti addiction medication. Discovering the mental and environmental triggers and subsequently treating them will help to ensure that every addict has a genuine chance of remaining drug and/or alcohol free in the years that follow their treatment program.