How Does Vivitrol Prevent Relapse?
A quality drug treatment program provides the tools and support one needs to find long-term recovery. Despite these tools in the arsenal, the struggle to maintain newfound sobriety while living daily life is often a significant struggle. To give the newly recovering addict more tools in combating addiction, prescription drugs such as Vivitrol have become increasingly popular. If you are newly recovering and looking to stop heroin cravings or to manage alcohol cravings, Vivitrol may be a viable option.
How Does Vivitrol Work?
Also known as naltrexone, Vivitrol is an injectable prescription medication that is taken once monthly to combat cravings. The drug is known as an antagonist medication which attaches to but does not activate the opioid receptors in the brain. This type of drug prevents the release of dopamine which produces a sense of euphoria in those who use substances. By creating a barrier that blocks opioid molecules and neurotransmitters from attaching to receptors, Vivitrol reduces not only cravings but reduces the pleasure of taking drugs and alcohol if they are consumed by an individual.
How Can Vivitrol Help Prevent Relapse?
In the fight to manage heroin cravings, alcohol cravings as well as other drugs, Vivitrol can be an asset in one’s drug treatment plan. The use of Vivitrol can be a crucial safety net when a patient transitions from detoxification to formal treatment. A newly recovering addict is at their most vulnerable during this critical phase of recovery. As stated, Vivitrol can reduce both the cravings and desire to use drugs and alcohol. As a result, the patient’s stress levels decrease, and they can focus on recovery.
Unlike Suboxone and Methadone, Vivitrol is non-addictive. During the drug treatment process, there can be a real concern regarding a phenomenon called secondary addiction. In this phenomenon, patients can become addicted to the drugs that are meant to help them recover from the drugs they were addicted to in the first place. In addition to not being addictive, those who take Vivitrol do not experience withdrawal symptoms when they discontinue using the medication.
Things to Consider
For those considering Vivitrol as part of their treatment program, there are several things that must be considered before moving forward. First, Vivitrol is not a magic cure. This drug can be an asset when it is a part of a solid recovery program which is continually monitored by experienced staff. Secondly, those who take Vivitrol can only do so only when all substances are completely cleared from their system. Therefore, patients must successfully complete detoxification before Vivitrol can be considered in treatment.
For those considering taking this medication for drug cravings, it can have significant side effects including the following:
- Cramping or pain in the stomach
- Nervousness and/or anxiety
- Slight headache
- Joint or muscle pain
- Nausea or vomiting
Additionally, Vivitrol is an expensive drug. In most cases, the administration of the drug can easily go over $1000 for each injection. Therefore, it is important that patients check their insurance to see if they have adequate prescription drug coverage.
Are You Looking for a Vivitrol Outpatient Program?
If you are seeking a drug treatment program in South Florida that includes Vivitrol treatment, contact Comprehensive Wellness Centers today. Our experienced staff will thoroughly go over the benefits and possible drawbacks of our Palm Beach Vivitrol program. We will customize a treatment plan that best fits your needs. Additionally, our team can review your insurance coverage to ensure that Vivitrol treatment can be covered. Call us toll-free today.
Medically Reviewed: March 10, 2022
Medical Reviewer | CWC Recovery Staff
All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.