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Adolescent treatment programs for opioid use disorder offer a variety of therapies, including medication-assisted treatment or MAT. These programs are often the best way for teens to detox from opioids safely and reduce their risk of relapse.

To learn whether your teen might be able to benefit from medication-assisted treatment in North Carolina, call Foothills at Red Oak Recovery® at [Direct]. Our supportive team can help you to understand your options.

What Is a Medication-Assisted Treatment Program?

A teenaged male thinking about medication assisted treatmentMAT programs are recovery programs that integrate FDA-approved medications with traditional behavioral therapies. Medications are prescribed by the client’s physician and are carefully overseen by qualified clinicians at the recovery center.

Opioid withdrawal can be extremely difficult and include intense cravings. Clients are at their highest risk for overdose while detoxing. As the body learns to regulate without opioids, an individual’s tolerance level for the substance lowers.

If a teen relapses and ingests the same amount of opioid they were previously used to, it could result in a fatal overdose.

Medications that decrease cravings and prevent overdose are life-saving. Each MAT client receives the medications that are most appropriate for their individual needs and may include methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone.

In addition to decreasing the risk of relapse and overdose, medication-assisted treatment helps teens stay as comfortable as possible during detox. Detox symptoms vary and may include:

  • Flu-like symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, and fever
  • Muscle aches
  • Cramping
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Agitation
  • Crying
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Rapid heartbeat

Severe symptoms such as seizures are also possible. Managing withdrawal symptoms with medication helps to get the recovery experience off to a more positive start. The sooner teens feel better, the sooner they can begin fully participating in the therapies that will help them maintain long-term recovery.

Can a MAT Program Help My Teen?

In combination with behavioral therapies, MAT has been found to be significantly more effective for treating teens with opioid use disorder than behavioral therapies alone. The American Academy of Pediatrics supports the use of medication-assisted treatment for adolescents.

Some of the benefits of a medication-assisted treatment program include:

  • Improved success rates
  • Better social function
  • Improved health overall
  • Improved ability to focus on recovery

Medication-assisted treatment leads to more positive outcomes. Many teenagers protest against the idea of recovery because they anticipate the physical and emotional difficulty of withdrawal. MAT removes those concerns. With the proper medical support, clients can detox with minimal discomfort or cravings.

What Other Types of Adolescent Treatment Programs Are Available?

A comprehensive MAT program includes traditional and non-traditional therapies that have been shown to be effective in treating addiction disorders. Each client’s treatment program is customized to fit their specific needs but may include:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Experiential therapies such as equine therapy or music therapy
  • Education
  • Behavioral therapy
  • Trauma therapy
  • Treatment for co-occurring disorders such as depression or anxiety

MAT helps to address the physical aspect of opioid use disorder, but participatory therapies address the client’s emotional and psychological needs. These therapies help teens build the skills they need to cope with everyday life without relying on substances as an escape.

Find Medication-Assisted Treatment in North Carolina at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery®

A MAT program is not an “easy way out,” nor does it protect a teen from the consequences of their actions. MAT is a medical approach to opioid recovery that has been found to be effective. Opioids are highly addictive substances that are extremely hard to quit alone.

The symptoms associated with opioid withdrawal may be mild or severe, even life-threatening. MAT offers a safer and more effective alternative than talk therapies alone. Call Foothills at Red Oak Recovery® today at [Direct] or use our online contact form to learn more about our medication-assisted treatment program.