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Using Medication Assisted Treatment to Reduce Overdose Deaths

doctor sitting with patient discussing medication assisted treatment options

Medication-assisted treatment can reduce overdose deaths by more than 50% in people struggling with a diagnosed use disorder. Overdose deaths have become a major public health crisis in the United States. 

From April 2020 to April 2021, over 70,000 people died from drug overdoses, a significant increase from the previous year. While many interventions are available to address this crisis, one of the most promising and effective is Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT). 

MAT is a comprehensive approach that combines medication, therapy, and support services to help people with substance use disorders achieve long-term recovery.

Signs of an Addiction

Signs of an addiction can vary, but common signs to look out for include changes in behavior, loss of interest in activities and people that were once important, and physical changes. 

Changes in behavior can include:

  • Becoming more isolated
  • Lying or being dishonest
  • Engaging in risky behaviors 
  • Loss of interest people that were once important 
  • Loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy


Physical changes can include:

  • Changes in appetite
  • Weight gain or loss, rapidly
  • Change in energy levels
  • Sunken eyes or cheeks
  • Skin redness


if you notice any of these signs in someone you know, it may be a sign of an addiction. It is important to seek help.

Understanding Medication-Assisted Addiction Treatment

Medication-assisted treatment is a form of treatment for alcohol use and other drug addictions. This treatment combines medications with counseling and behavioral therapies to provide a holistic approach to treating addiction. 

Medications used in this treatment can help reduce cravings for alcohol or drugs. Also, reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms. These medications can help to reduce the risk of relapse and increase the chances of successful recovery. 

Medication-assisted treatment can be an effective way to help people struggling with addiction. It can provide them with the tools to cope with their addiction and the support they need to stay on the path to recovery.

The Role of MAT in Reducing Overdose Deaths 

MAT is a proven, effective way to reduce the harmful effects of alcohol and drug use. As well as prevent overdose deaths. MAT combines medications with counseling and other support services to help people reduce or stop their drug and alcohol use. In addition, the medications used in MAT reduce cravings and reduce the effects of withdrawal symptoms. 

This encourages individuals to stay in treatment and avoid relapse. Relapses have a higher likelihood of overdose. MAT also provides support services such as counseling, Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and case management that can help people address underlying issues.

When combined with other interventions, including alcohol use disorder medications, MAT can help reduce the number of overdose deaths. MAT can also give people the support they need to recover from addiction successfully.

What is the Effectiveness of MAT? 

Medication-assisted treatment has been a key factor in reducing overdose deaths by 50%. MAT combines medication, counseling, and other behavioral therapies to treat substance use disorders with a multipronged approach. MAT helps patients with alcohol use disorders manage their medications. It also provides them with the necessary tools to stay sober and healthy

In addition, MAT can also help reduce the risk of relapse. It provides an ongoing support system for those in recovery. As a result, MAT has become a crucial component in the fight against overdose deaths. It is helping to save countless lives.

MAT Medications Commonly Used 

Commonly used MAT medications include:

  • Methadone: A long-acting opioid agonist that binds to opioid receptors in the brain and blocks the effects of other opioids.
  • Buprenorphine: A partial opioid agonist that reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms without producing euphoric effects like other opioids. 
  • Naltrexone: An opioid antagonist that blocks the effects of opioids and reduces cravings. All three medications can be used as part of a comprehensive treatment plan.

When is it Time for Treatment? 

It is time for addiction treatment when a person’s substance use has become unmanageable and negatively impacts their life. 

Common signs that a person may need treatment:

  • changes in behavior
  • increased irritability or mood swings
  • physical health problems
  • legal issues
  • financial problems
  • relationship issues


If a person cannot stop using a substance despite negative consequences, it is likely time to seek help. Treatment can take many forms, including individual or support group counseling, medication, or residential treatment. It is important to remember that addiction is a treatable disease, and with the right help, recovery is possible. Seeking help is the first step in finding a healthier, more fulfilling life.

Finding MAT Treatment 

Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is a widely accepted and effective approach to treating addiction, particularly for those struggling with opioid or alcohol addiction. Agape Detox Center offers MAT as part of its treatment program. They utilize FDA-approved medications to help patients manage withdrawal symptoms and reduce their cravings for alcohol and other drugs. 

To find MAT treatment at Agape Detox Center, reach out to the center’s admissions team to schedule an assessment and learn more about how to get started with MAT. It’s also important to note that MAT is not a standalone treatment. Instead, it is holistically integrated with behavioral therapies and counseling to provide a comprehensive approach to the patient’s recovery journey. 

With the support and guidance of Agape Detox Center’s team, individuals can find the right treatment plan and take the first step toward lasting recovery. Call them today at (855) 948-2936 or fill out this form to get yourself or a loved one started on the journey to recovery.

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