Author: <span class="vcard">CRE Health</span>

naltrexone and methadone

Methadone or Naltrexone Implants – Which is Better to Treat Opioid Addiction?

How they Work

Methadone works because the it helps to block many of the effects of taking opioids or opiates and replaces that “high” with lowered opioid-like feelings. The reason methadone works like this is because it is an opioid itself and it takes over the opioid pleasure receptors so other opioids are experienced at much weaker levels.

methadone treatment

Similar to methadone, naltrexone implants block  the same pleasure receptors that opioids usually attach to. However, since naltrexone is an opioid antagonist (as opposed to an opioid analgesic, which is what people really mean when they say opioids), it doesn’t cause any of those pleasurable effects although it works to end cravings, too.

We believe naltrexone implants are superior in how they work because they actually get people used to not having an opioid in their system while methadone makes people people continue consuming an opioid while they try to quit them.

Our choice: naltrexone implant

Are they Effective?

Due to the aforementioned blocking of the pleasure receptors, most of the people who get naltrexone implants are able to quit using opioids for at least as long as the implant lasts.

Similarly, findings printed in the Journal of the National Medical Association show that methadone increases the chances of successfully detoxifying the patient. However, it also notes that the best chance for success in treating the opioid addiction is to have the patient enrolled in a substance abuse program at a rehab center at the same time as they are taking methadone.

Though there seems to be some caveats with the effectiveness of methadone, both of these medicines have proven to be more effective in helping patients quit an opioid addiction while they are still taking it.

Our choice: Tie

Chance for Relapse

During initial testing for naltrexone implants, the people who used the actual medicine had a  success rate of 83 percent. Conversely, people who try to quit opiates like heroin without the help of a naltrexone implant or any other medication have an abysmal success rate of 5-10 percent with some studies putting the success rate closer to 2 percent. That being said, naltrexone implants haven’t been on the market for long, and these success rates are liable to change as more testing is done.

Methadone has a scaling success rate of helping people quit opiates. That scaling goes from 60 to 90 percent, and the higher rates are directly affected by how long the patient is in a medically assisted rehab program. Understandably, the longer the rehab, the more likely they will be to never return to opiates.

For both of these treatment options, the chances of success in ending the opiate addiction are especially good compared to other drugs. If it wasn’t for for having medications to help quit, the success rate of quitting opioids on your own is around 5 percent. However, once the methadone treatment program is over, there’s a chance that the user just moves from their original opioid or opiate addiction to being addicted to methadone. For Naltrexone implants, there is no reported addiction associated with them.

Our choice: Naltrexone implant


Those who take methadone have to take it every 24 to 72 hours. Although medicines that are taken as frequently as every day or less are convenient as far as prescriptions are concerned, any frequency is what takes away nearly all of methadone’s convenience. When first given methadone, they will only allow you to take home one dose at a time.

Over time as you show that you are responsible and committed to sobriety, they can increase how much you take home until you max out at a one month supply. However, if you follow all the rules suggested for taking methadone home (especially putting them in a container secured by lock and key), you could be adding a few minutes to opening and giving yourself the medicine. A couple minutes a day doesn’t sound like much, but that still also takes away some of the convenience of methadone.

The convenience level of naltrexone implants is one of the biggest features that the medicine offers. For as long as the implant lasts, which can be as long as a few months, patients don’t have to do anything to make sure that the naltrexone implant is working to keep them off opioids

Our choice: Naltrexone implant

Alcoholism and Alcohol Rehab Centers

Although drinks like beer, wine, and liquor are legal and readily available at nearly every grocery store, convenience store, and restaurant in the United States, alcohol use disorder -more commonly referred to as alcoholism- is one of the worst conditions that anyone can afflict someone as far as any addiction is concerned.

Dangers of Alcohol Addiction

Though getting “buzzed”, “tipsy”, or “drunk” is often the goal of those who drink alcohol, people put themselves at risk when using this substance. Most notably, that drunkenness, which was the drinker’s goal in the first place, can itself be a direct cause of injury or death.

Most people already know that drinking and driving is dangerous for both the driver and anyone else in a nearby vehicle on the road. However, a car crash is only one of the ways you can get hurt while drinking. Inebriation from alcohol impairs your balance and reaction speed, which has led to serious injuries from otherwise mundane situations.

Still, alcohol use and addiction has many more short- and long-term effects that put people at risk of emotional and physical turmoil, as well as leading to all kinds of problems in the alcoholic’s social and work life.

Short Term Effects

Along with slowing down brain function, the short-term side effects from drinking too much include additional risks that go beyond just injuring yourself. From “having one too many” to heavy binge drinking can cause varying degrees of the following symptoms:

  • Drops in body temperature
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Irrational aggression, sadness, or both
  • Slurred speech
  • Nausea and throwing up
  • Passing out
  • Losing control of bladder or bowel
  • Coma
  • Death

When taken with additional substances, the short-term effects of alcohol abuse can be potentially much worse. This is true even for some prescription medications, so make sure to read your prescription information closely to check for interaction warnings with alcohol.

Long Term Effects

Over time, the constant consumption of alcohol starts to cause additional problems. Some of these long-term effects include:

  • Alcohol tolerance
  • Dependence and alcoholism
  • Pancreatitis
  • Depression
  • Apathy
  • Liver damage
  • Cirrhosis
  • Cancer
  • Weakened immune system
  • Sexual performance degradation

Like most substances, long-term abuse of alcohol can also lead to and aggravate behavioral problems and mental illness. Because of this, people with mental health conditions should avoid alcohol consumption, especially binge drinking and overconsumption in general.

Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms

Along with the effects that alcoholism can lead to, quitting alcohol “cold turkey” can cause a variety of problems as well for those who have alcohol use disorder and have developed a physiological dependence.

First Day Withdrawal

When quitting drinking, the following alcohol withdrawal symptoms may arise for alcoholics during the first day of sobriety:

  • Shaking
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Headaches
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Anxiety
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty sleeping

Alcohol Withdrawal During a Detox Period

After the initial withdrawal period (the first day or so) has ended, the withdrawal effects during the second and third day may intensify and lead to new problems, including:

  • Fever
  • Confusion
  • High blood pressure
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Suicidal thoughts

Due to dangerous alcohol withdrawal symptoms, alcoholism should be treated by the professionals at a private rehab center.

Rehab for Alcoholics

At an alcohol rehab center, alcoholics will receive the attention and care they need to make sure the risks of withdrawal are well managed. With the first few days of quitting alcohol being especially difficult to contend with, the staff at a rehab center that treats alcoholism will make sure the patient stays on track and that he or she doesn’t relapse just to appease withdrawal symptoms.

After the initial detox period has ended and the worst of the withdrawal symptoms are over, patients start going through classes, addiction therapy, and group discussions to discover the cause and aggravation of the alcoholism in the first place. Patients will also learn how to avoid and manage those triggers as well as receive the tools and information needed to stay sober once returning to regular life after rehab.

Private Teen Rehab

As parents, we often forget that our teenagers aren’t just our little kids anymore – they are on the final stretches of becoming an adult. Because of this, they can rebel as a means to feel like they are in control of their own life, whether or not they realize that’s why they’re rebelling in the first place. Some teens end up rebelling in ways that aren’t inherently harmful and can include things like staying out late and dressing a certain way, among others.

The Rebellious Stage

However, some rebellious activities can lead to some very serious situations. These situations include things like being severely injured, teen pregnancy, and dropping out of school. In many instances, those consequences were the direct result of the teen using drugs or alcohol. During their altered state of mind, teenagers may not make the best decisions. Thankfully, most kids only try a substance once or twice and don’t use it again until they are of legal age and have matured. Nevertheless, some teens end up heavily addicted to whatever substance they are using and will need a significant amount of help and attention to fully quit using drugs and alcohol.

Are there Signs Your Teen is Using Drugs or Alcohol?

Though alcohol is fairly easy to (literally) sniff out, many drugs can be difficult to detect. Because of this, you should be aware of behavioral changes that your teen is going through. What is difficult about having a teen -and being a parent in general- is just how much our kids’ moods can swing thanks to them growing up and going through all sorts of mental and biological changes, which can lead to all sorts of weird behavior.

That being said, there isn’t going to  be a single telltale sign that proves that your kid is abusing drugs and alcohol unless you catch them in the act. Still, being aware of the way they act and carry themselves can mean the difference between you getting them help before they’re even addicted versus having to put them through a  private inpatient rehab program. Along with those changes in behavior, try to stay aware of more tangible and physical traits like sunken in eyes and/or cheeks, a  dulling of the complexion, a complete disregard for personal hygiene, and other big changes like these.

Private Rehab for Your Teen

When you first start thinking about putting your teen into a substance abuse treatment program, private rehab centers should be the first facilities that you look into. There are a few reasons that private rehab centers are preferable for your teen over public rehab, not the least of which is that private facilities are reportedly more successful than their public and government-ran counterparts.

This success not only has to do with better access to resources and professionals, but the ratio  of patients to staff is much lower in private rehab. This means that each patient will receive more attention and care in a private facility.

The biggest difference, though, has to do with your teen’s living situation during rehab. Most facilities will do their best to ensure that teens are placed with other teens in the facilities, but it isn’t necessarily absolutely guaranteed. In private rehab, on the other hand, entire facilities are dedicated to taking care of teens and incorporating  their families into the care and rehabilitation process.

For more information about finding your teen a rehab center for the substance abuse treatment they need, contact us as soon as possible by calling (877) 925-1541.

naltrexone and methadone

Methadone or Naltrexone Implants – Which is Better to Treat Opioid Addiction?

How they Work Methadone works because the it helps to block many of the effects of taking opioids or opiates and replaces …

Alcoholism and Alcohol Rehab Centers

Although drinks like beer, wine, and liquor are legal and readily available at nearly every grocery store, convenience store, …

Private Teen Rehab

As parents, we often forget that our teenagers aren’t just our little kids anymore – they are on the final stretches …