Please join us at ACF Night at Jaleo Wednesday, Sept. 12, from 5:00 – 10:00 pm. Jaleo Crystal City will donate 30% of the night’s proceeds to the Community Foundation, which in turn supports as many of our hard-working, effective nonprofits as possible, through our discretionary and donor advised funds. They have arranged for great prizes to be awarded to the 3 Arlington nonprofits that have the most “fans” that night for drinks, appetizers or dinner. (Guests will be asked at the door.) So, we hope you will come and enjoy some delicious Spanish tapas, food and drink! You could “re-gift” your prize by making it the centerpiece of a special evening for your very special donors or volunteers.
I sat down to write a totally factual non-biased blog about Methadone-just the facts, the who, why and where. I found that to be difficult. I have read rave reviews and horror stories about the use of Methadone both as a pain reliever and as a treatment for heroin addiction. After spending a week reading every article I could find on the subject I still am not sure about Methadone.
Methadone was developed in Germany as a synthetic opioid pain reliever. It was introduced to the US market around 1947 as a long-acting painkiller for surgical and cancer patients. Doctors first tested the benefits of Methadone on a short-term basis to treat the withdrawal symptoms in addicts being taken off of heroin or morphine in 1950. Heroin reacts with neuron sensors in the users brain much like their own endorphins to create a feeling of euphoria. After the euphoria the user will experience dry mouth, slowed breathing, weakness of the muscles and an alternating alert and drowsy state. Methadone does not create the feeling of euphoria but the other side affects are quite similar. If an addict uses heroin while on Methadone the feeling of euphoria is blocked which in theory helps the addict quit using. However, methadone does not block the effects of non-opiate drugs (sedatives, tranquilizers, stimulants, alcohol, etc.). That is why some patients die from an overdose. Most overdoses occur when addicts in treatment supplement their prescribed methadone with other central nervous system depressants. Drinking alcohol while on Methadone can be fatal.
Methadone is not a cure for opiate addiction. It is a tool which suppresses withdrawal symptoms, lessens cravings for heroin, and, used with therapy, allows the patient to recreate relationships and reduce stress reactions underlying relapse.
The best treatment for this addiction seems to be a combination of residential therapy program and methadone treatment. This is a relatively rare occurrence as most patients on methadone do not seek out a therapeutic program and many therapeutic programs do not accept methadone patients.
Some people believe that Methadone saved their lives, put them on the right track – one they could not have followed without it. One of the private Methadone clinics did a study and found that the most successful people in Methadone treatment are over 30 years old, have children, have done prison time, and have made the decision to get off drugs.
A link to the CDC http://www.cdc.gov/Vitalsigns/pdf/2012-07-vitalsigns.pdf