Why does buprenorphine/naloxone (known by its brand name, Suboxone) have therapy requirements?
At Workit Clinic, we use medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to treat opioid addiction with Suboxone.
Because patients are taking a pill that mimics the effects of an opiate, they experience little to no withdrawal symptoms and are less likely to relapse.
While patients generally stay on Suboxone for one to two years, we at Workit Clinic know that addiction is a lifelong disease. In order to stick to recovery and truly become free from addiction someone must be able to manage triggers, understand addiction, and maintain a support system.
The bad news? There is no magic pill that gives a person this knowledge. The good news? Therapy or counseling can help people acquire these skills and live a life free from opiate addiction.
The combination of medication-assisted treatment and therapy is not a new concept.
In fact, federal law requires that MAT patients receive some form of counseling with their Suboxone prescription. Not only is therapy with MAT mandated, it is proven to work better than MAT treatment without any therapeutic intervention.
Medication-assisted treatment helps patients get past initial withdrawal and stay off of addictive substances.
It treats the physical symptoms of addiction. However, therapy is often needed to address the core of addiction illness. Therapy will allow a person to explore what their triggers are and how to combat them. A therapist will often provide psychoeducation on addiction and the emotions and symptoms that often come with it. If and when relapse or mishaps occur, a therapist will be there to provide support, forgiveness, and plan coping strategies.
Addiction is tough, but you’re tougher – especially when you have learned the skills you need to succeed in lifelong treatment.
Here at Workit Clinic, we’re here for the long haul. We don’t just want to help you get sober, we want to teach you the skills to lead a long, healthy, happy life free from addiction.
Workit Health helps you meet your recovery goals.
Brooke Houser is the Head of Care Management at Workit Health and committed to helping Workit members with whatever, whenever. Brooke is a master's level social worker with special interest in addiction and telemedicine. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, spending time with her family, and listening to true crime podcasts. You can follow her on Twitter at @Brooke_Houser_ .