Methadone Addiction Treatment & Rehab Center near Santa Rosa, CA

Since 1957, Azure Acres Treatment Center has given hope to individuals struggling with methadone addiction and its lasting effects. Azure Acres provides residents high-quality alcohol and drug abuse treatment near Santa Rosa, California.

Understanding Methadone Addiction

Learn about methadone addiction

Primarily used for helping individuals overcome opioid addictions, methadone is a long-acting synthetic opioid drug that is generally much safer than its illicit cousins, such as heroin and opium. Methadone is commonly used to help individuals overcome addictions to drugs such as heroin, opium, and prescription opioid painkillers, and it is sometimes also used as a painkiller. When a person takes methadone as directed, the drug does not produce a high, but it does suppress opioid cravings and relieve symptoms of withdrawal that would otherwise encourage a person to relapse. As such, methadone can be a powerful ally in a person’s fight against opioid abuse.

Unfortunately, as with all opioids, methadone must be used with care. If it is abused, methadone can potentially be just as dangerous as other opioid drugs and can cause just as much disruption and devastation in a person’s life. Because methadone does not produce a high, individuals may take more than they are prescribed since they may not be aware that the drug is “working.” Because of the drug’s long-lasting effects, users may build to lethal levels of methadone in their bodies if they take repeated doses in quick succession.


Methadone addiction statistics

Data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) indicate that just over 300,000 people were receiving methadone treatment as of 2011. In fact, SAMHSA estimates that methadone treatment accounts for about one-quarter of all substance abuse care. An article published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicated that methadone was responsible for between 5 and 19 percent of drug-related deaths nationwide and that it caused almost 40 percent of single-drug opioid deaths in 2010.

Causes and Risk Factors

Causes and risk factors for methadone addiction

Experts understand that genetics and environment play a large role in determining a person’s risk of methadone abuse. However, many experts also indicate that genetic factors can influence the environments that person chooses to place him- or herself in, suggesting that these environmental risk factors in fact have their roots in one’s genetic makeup. Naturally, one of the most important environmental factors that can increase a person’s risk of methadone abuse is a history of opioid use that is currently being treated with methadone. In addition to these factors, consider the following:

Genetic: Certain genetically-influenced personality traits, such as impulsivity and novelty-seeking, can affect a person’s risk of methadone abuse. Furthermore, although one’s social environment can affect one’s risk of abusing methadone, research suggests that one’s genes affect a person’s choice of peer groups.

Risk Factors:

  • Being prescribed methadone
  • Having a personal history of opioid abuse
  • Having an impulsive or novelty-seeking temperament
  • Having a family history of substance abuse
  • Associating with peers who abuse substances

Signs and Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of methadone addiction

People who are struggling with methadone abuse often have a common set of signs and symptoms. While each person’s methadone abuse is unique, the following are some symptoms that may be evidence of methadone abuse:

Behavioral symptoms:

  • Taking more methadone than a person intends or more than is prescribed
  • Inability to cut down on methadone use
  • Spending an inordinate amount of time acquiring methadone, using it, or recovering from its use
  • Underperforming at work or school as a result of methadone use
  • Avoiding important responsibilities or obligations in favor of using methadone
  • Using methadone in situations where doing so is dangerous (e.g., while driving)
  • Continuing to use methadone despite being aware that the drug is causing significant problems in the person’s life

Physical symptoms:

  • Drowsiness
  • Slurred speech
  • Dry mouth or nose
  • Constipation
  • Tolerance, or needing more methadone to achieve desired effects
  • Withdrawal, during which a person experiences severe negative symptoms if he or she does not use methadone for a period of time

Cognitive symptoms:

  • Poor attention
  • Poor memory
  • Experiencing cravings for methadone

Psychosocial symptoms:

  • Experiencing social strain or interpersonal problems as a result of methadone abuse
  • Agitation or frustration
  • Depressed mood


Effects of methadone addiction

Although it can help individuals overcome addictions to much more dangerous substances, methadone can cause a range of negative effects if it is abused. Some of these effects may include:

  • Onset or worsening of mental health symptoms
  • Polysubstance use, addiction, or chemical dependency
  • Poor work performance and job loss
  • Financial strain
  • Relational difficulties
  • Social isolation
  • Separation or divorce
  • Loss of child custody
  • Interaction with the legal system, including jail time
  • Collapsed veins, lesions, and skin abscesses (if methadone is injected)
  • Cardiovascular damage
  • Increased risk of contracting HIV and hepatitis C if sharing used needles with others
  • Death as a result of overdose

Co-Occurring Disorders

Methadone addiction and co-occurring disorders

Unfortunately, methadone abuse often occurs alongside other mental health disorders. Some of these co-occurring disorders may include:

  • Other substance use disorders
  • Depressive disorders
  • Antisocial personality disorder
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Withdrawal & Overdose

Effects of methadone withdrawal and overdose

Effects of methadone withdrawal: Abstaining from methadone after a long period of abuse often brings with it a series of uncomfortable symptoms, some of which can include:

  • Depressed mood
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Yawning
  • Muscle aches
  • Runny nose
  • Watery eyes
  • Dilated pupils
  • Sweating
  • Fever
  • Insomnia

Effects of methadone overdose: When a person ingests more methadone than his or her body can safely manage, he or she will experience an overdose, which is a dangerous and possibly fatal condition. If someone who has been using methadone exhibits the following signs or experiences the following symptoms, it is imperative that he or she receives medical attention as soon as possible:

  • Pinpoint pupils
  • Stomach spasms
  • Muscle twitching
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Gastrointestinal issues
  • Weak pulse
  • Trouble breathing
  • Disorientation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness or fatigue
  • Blue-tinged skin
  • Coma

Why Seek Treatment

Why seek treatment for methadone addiction at Azure Acres near Santa Rosa, CA

Often the best way to treat a person who is struggling with methadone abuse is to provide him or her with a safe place to recover and build skills for a drug-free future. Residential care at Azure Acres Treatment Center can be just such a place.

When a person needs to overcome a methadone addiction, the simple act of removing the person from an environment of temptation can provide enormous benefit. Residential care at Azure Acres allows individuals to live in a drug-free residence and invest their time in detoxing from methadone, being supported by staff members and fellow residents, and building the skills necessary to break the chains of drug abuse once and for all. By the time they transition into outpatient care and, eventually, back into their communities, individuals who have recovered at Azure Acres have been provided with hundreds of hours of care, counseling, psychoeducation, and support. With the help of Azure Acres Treatment Center, which is located in Sonoma County and near Santa Rosa, California, it is possible to begin the journey of lifelong sobriety.

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An assessment is an important first step toward treatment of and recovery from addiction.

The Azure Acres staff here did an amazing job helping me understand and overcome many of the underlying causes to my meth addiction. They are always so genuinely supportive and caring.

– Former Patient