How to find a Methadone Clinic near me

Methadone is a synthetic long-acting full opioid agonist. The Schedule II Controlled Substance is a common prescription opioid medication used to help treat opioid use disorder. It is taken daily in minimal controlled doses and can be administered in a pill/tablet, a liquid concentrate, a powder that dissolves in water, or in a wafer form. One dose can last anywhere between 4-8 hours. Methadone works by changing the way the brain and nervous system respond to pain. It helps to ease opioid withdrawal and control opioid cravings. Methadone has the potential to become addictive and should only be taken as prescribed by a licensed clinical professional.

Three glass bottles of liquid methadone sit behind a syringe on a glass table at a methadone clinic.

Methadone is a medication FDA-approved for the treatment of opioid use disorder and pain management. It is most commonly used as a part of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) during the detox phase of rehab and recovery. It is safe and effective when used as prescribed. However, methadone is only one component of opioid use disorder treatment. It is part of a comprehensive treatment plan that also includes cognitive behavior treatments, therapies and other supportive methods when targeting substance use disorders. Methadone helps to reduce opioid cravings and ease withdrawal symptoms by blunting or blocking the effects of opioids.

Methadone treatment is highly regulated. In fact, the two government agencies in charge of official opioid treatment programs (OTP) that provide methadone are the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). These agencies regulate methadone clinics of more than 1250 across the U.S. Methadone clinics are the only places authorized to prescribe the medication for opioid use disorder treatment in the U.S.

What are Methadone Clinics?

Methadone clinics are certified treatment programs in which the prescription medication can be prescribed and administered. SAMHSA-certified opioid treatment programs that are registered with the DEA are the only places that can provide methadone treatment. Patients in methadone treatment are able to receive the medication under the care and supervision of licensed practitioners and clinicians.

Methadone clinics offer a wide variety of other services related to the treatment program. They can provide comprehensive treatment including counseling, therapy, group therapy, and other supportive services. Clinics can help reduce or eliminate drug use by providing advice and support on how to manage or reduce the spread of infectious diseases. These diseases such as HIV and Hepatitis are often spread through shared needles during drug use.

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, patients had to physically attend clinic every day in order to receive treatment. Over time, if progress was being made, patients were able to receive take home doses over a weekend instead of going in person. After the pandemic, more methadone clinics began allowing flexibility in treatment to avoid patients missing a dose or putting them at risk of relapsing. New services such as 14-day take-home doses were allowed for less stable patients, 28-day take-home doses for more stable patients, curbside treatment, medication drop off, designated medication pick up and telehealth services, became readily available.

Infograph showing facts and details about Methadone.

What is the Methadone Treatment Process?

  • Get tested. Once enrolled in the methadone treatment program you will get tested by a physician who will check your urine and saliva and other medical components to assess your condition.
  • Talk to your team. You will collaborate with your treatment care team and consider how your last dose made you feel, how strong your cravings are, your sleeping patterns and other medical conditions.
  • Taking methadone dose. You will receive your medication dose.
  • Participate in therapy. You will have opportunities to work with counselors and therapists in individual or group settings. Some places will also have opportunities to find local support groups.

The length of time and treatment when taking methadone for opioid use disorder is a minimum of around 12 months. However, each patient is different and their treatment will be dependent on the recommendation of their physicians and their progress in the program.

Where to find a Methadone Clinic?

For those who seek out treatment for opioid use disorder, many people tend to online search the term “methadone clinic near me.” Searching online is a great first step in finding a methadone treatment provider. Methadone treatments are only provided through SAMHSA-certified opioid treatment programs. The SAMHSA website has an easy online locator for local programs. You can talk to your primary care provider and ask for a referral or recommendation. Another way to find methadone treatment is to contact your insurance provider. They will be able to direct you to a program that will be covered under your individual insurance policy.

Because methadone treatment is highly regulated, patients will need to go to specific clinics. Most hospitals and primary care providers cannot prescribe or administer methadone treatment. Primary care physicians cannot legally prescribe methadone. Methadone treatments can only be prescribed by a licensed and trained methadone clinician.

Traditional methadone clinics required patients to show up every day in order to receive their dose of medication. However, after the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been ease on restrictions and some patients can now participate in telehealth/telemedicine. These methadone clinics have specialized pharmacies where patients can go and pick up the prescribed medications prescribed online from a doctor.

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Who are Methadone Clinics for?

Research has shown that methadone clinics have 33% fewer positive opioid drug tests and patients are about four times more likely to remain in treatment. Methadone clinics are not for everyone. Opioid use disorder is a dangerous and difficult disease to overcome. There are many different treatment options when it comes to treating OUD. When considering the path of methadone treatment, there are a few criteria that need to be met. Professional addiction specialists can help clients figure out if methadone treatment can help them.

  • Patients must be 18 years or older
  • Patients must have at least a year of moderate to severe opioid addiction
  • Patients must voluntarily consent to treatment
  • Patients must not have any current prescriptions for other opioids
  • Patients must not be using other mind-altering drugs
  • Patients must show signs of opioid withdrawal
  • Patients must not have a seizure disorder

Myths about Methadone Treatment

A common misconception about methadone treatment is that it trades one drug for another. Methadone is a medically prescribed medication that acts on the same receptors of the brain as opioids. However, it works by attaching to these brain receptors to blunt and block feelings of euphoria often felt by opioids such as heroin and fentanyl. Methadone is medically regulated and has been clinically shown to reduce the chances and risks of relapse.  

Some people believe only “criminals and junkies” need methadone treatment. The stigma behind this belief creates prejudice and stereotypes of those who are of lower socioeconomic backgrounds. However, addiction does not discriminate. People of all ages, backgrounds, and economic statuses can become addicted to opioids and need to receive methadone treatment as part of their recovery.

A third popular misconception about methadone is that the drug is unregulated. On the contrary, the medication is highly regulated. There are federal laws that control the operation and distribution of methadone treatment for opioid use disorder.

Reach out to Hotel California by the Sea

We specialize in treating addiction and other co-occurring disorders, such as PTSD. Our Admissions specialists are available to walk you through the best options for treating your addiction.

Are you looking for treatment for Opioid Use Disorder?

Methadone clinics in the U.S. are SAMHSA-certified opioid treatment programs that offer specialized care in addiction treatment medicine. Under new policies and regulations, there is increased access to medications through telehealth. This can make it easier and safer for people to receive methadone treatment. At Hotel California by the Sea, we offer treatment for opioid use disorder.

We provide medication management throughout detox and the other stages of rehab recovery including residential and outpatient programs. We offer individual and group therapy such as CBT, DBT and EMDR therapy. Hotel California by the Sea provides a comprehensive treatment plan for all clients looking for opioid use disorder treatment.