Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is an evidence-based approach to treating drug and alcohol addiction. It is a combination of medication and counseling to address both the physical and psychological aspects of addiction. MAT is designed to reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings, while providing patients with the support and resources they need to achieve lasting recovery.
MAT is a comprehensive approach that includes the prescription of FDA-approved medications to help reduce cravings, block the effects of the addictive substance, and help with withdrawal symptoms. These medications are combined with psychosocial support to provide the patient with the best chance of success in achieving lasting recovery.
The most common medications used in MAT are methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone. Each of these medications works differently in the body and each may be best suited for different individuals. Methadone works by blocking the effects of opioids, while buprenorphine is used to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Naltrexone blocks the effects of opioids and alcohol, and can help reduce cravings.
MAT has been found to be effective in treating both drug and alcohol addiction when combined with behavioral therapy. Studies have shown that MAT can lead to better outcomes than traditional treatment approaches. Studies have also shown that MAT can lead to improved patient retention, better adherence to treatment, and lower rates of relapse.
MAT is not a “quick fix” for addiction, but it is an important part of a comprehensive approach to treating addiction. It can provide a safe, effective, and evidence-based approach to treating addiction and helping people achieve long-term recovery.