Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is the use of medications with counseling and behavioral therapies, to provide a “whole-patient” approach to treatment of substance use disorders. MAT is primarily used for the treatment of addiction to opioids such as heroin and prescription pain relievers that contain opiates. The prescribed medication operates to normalize brain chemistry, block the euphoric effects of alcohol and opioids, relieve physiological cravings, and normalize body functions without the negative effects of the abused drug.
While MAT may be a viable option for some patients, it is simply a tool in the toolkit when treating substance use disorders, and appropriate therapy should be chosen in consultation with a licensed healthcare provider.
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