Can Methadone Be Abused?
Methadone is one of the most widely used synthetic narcotics in the treatment of opiate and opioid addiction. When used as prescribed, methadone can be a very effective and safe medication. In fact, many ex-addicts have been able to gain control over their lives thanks to this medication. However, methadone can be an addictive drug that directly affects the central nervous system (CNS) and changes the way the brain functions.
More here on ways methadone is abused and its negative consequences, with a section at the end for your comments or question.
Abuse of Methadone
Although doctors state that methadone technically cannot get you “high”, some people have found a way around this. A synthetic medication, methadone has both critics and fans in the world of medicine. On the one hand, it can be used effectively in treating addiction as replacement opioid therapy. It blocks the euphoria and sedating effects produced by heroin and similar opiates, and both postpones withdrawal symptoms and relieves cravings. On the other hand, methadone is criticized as a replacement drug: replacing one type of addiction for another.
Moreover, methadone has the ability to alter the way the brain functions. Because of this, methadone use can manifest as increased tolerance in the system, and/or physical as well as psychological dependence.
Signs of Methadone Abuse
What are some of the signs of abuse of methadone? The obvious signs that can serve as red flags that your or a loved one’s methadone use has turned into a problem, may include:
- chewing methadone
- crushing methadone into powder for snorting
- dissolving methadone pills for intravenous injection
- using methadone for euphoric effect
- using methadone in larger doses than prescribed
- using methadone more often than prescribed
- mixing methadone with other substances including alcohol, illicit drugs, and/or prescription pills
In sum, using methadone in any way other than prescribed or in order to get high can be a sign of misuse and abuse.
Methadone Abuse Risks
Being a habit- forming narcotic, methadone provokes adaptations in the brain body, a point during which the body adjusts to the presence of methadone as normal, and cannot function regularly without it. This kind of methadone dependence develops after regular daily dosing over a period of a couple of weeks or longer, which will lead to methadone withdrawal when you eventually try to quit or cut back on use. But what other risks come along with abusing methadone?
Abusing methadone may lead you to many health risks, which could be even life-threatening. The most common adverse effects of methadone abuse include:
- body pain
- dry mouth
- excessive sweating
- loss of appetite
- mood changes
- nausea and vomiting
- weight gain
Methadone Abuse Statistics
Our advice is to be very careful when using methadone. Seek information from your local pharmacist on which drugs to avoid when taking methadone and read a lot before taking it. There are many trusty government sites where you can read all statistics on methadone abuse and its side effects. Some sites for more on methadone abuse statistics include:
- The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
- Office of National Drug Control Policy
- Drug Enforcement Administration
- National Institute on Drug Abuse
Got Any Questions?
There is a potential for developing addiction to methadone, so methadone abuse is hard to handle alone. We hope to answer your major questions on methadone abuse here. But, if you still have some concerns, questions and/or experiences regarding methadone detox or methadone addiction treatment, please share them in the comments section at the end. We will respond to your comments as soon as possible.