Vivitrol, also known as naltrexone, is a medication that blocks the effects of opioids and is used as a part of treatment for drug or alcohol dependence. Vivitrol is an extended-release injection that is also used for alcohol abuse. It is administered once per month and gives an added level of protection against craving and even withdrawal symptoms.
Vivitrol is an opioid antagonist that directly impacts the brain. During active opioid addiction, natural opioid receptors are activated when the drug is taken causing the brain to release dopamine and other neurochemicals that cause a person to continue to chase a high. Vivitrol blocks the brain’s pleasure center that is activated when opioids are taken or alcohol is consumed.
How Does Vivitrol Help Opioid Addicts?
Since Vivitrol blocks the opioid receptors in the brain it can help a person from relapsing because they no longer crave it. If a person were to use while on the Vivitrol shot, they will not feel the effects they want to get high.
Vivitrol shows a 90% success rate in reducing opioid addiction over 6 months. The same study shows that about 55% of users showed a decrease in feeling opioid cravings. When it comes to Vivitrol for alcohol dependency, this drug reduces heavy drinking by close to 90% According to a study conducted by the National Institute of Drug Abuse:
Extended-release naltrexone (Vivitrol) resulted in a lower rate of opioid relapse than the rate with usual treatment.
One of the first things people ask when deciding to tale Vivitrol is “ Is this drug addictive?” The good news is that Vivitrol has no addictive potential since it does not activate any receptors In the brain when taken, this means that Vivitrol won’t lead to any dependence or produce any painful withdrawal symptoms. This drug can even be used indefinitely and will not cause any tolerance to be built up.
Downsides to the Vivitrol Shot
One major problem to keep an eye on when it comes to using Vivitrol is that it can still play a role in overdosing on opioids. If it is used properly, this shot helps to block the euphoric and “high” feelings that opioids produce. The problem happens when people try to bypass this barrier by taking more and more to try and get high. The problem is that Vivitrol does not block all of the effects this drug has on the body and can still be toxic at high levels. This can cause a potentially fatal overdose even though they don’t get high. The fact that you cannot feel the high often leads people to believe that they are not at risk for an overdose, but this is far from the truth.
Opioid Addiction Rehab Program
Vivitrol is a very useful medication for opioid addiction, but it is vital to use it responsibly for it to not be dangerous. Once you have safely detoxed, our staff here at Garden State Treatment Center offers many treatment options to help you continue with your journey in recovery and be as successful as possible.
We offer partial hospitalization; intensive outpatient and outpatient treatment medicated assisted treatment, day or night treatment, and even recovery residences so you can stay in a safe comfortable environment while you put your life back together. Drug addiction isn’t an easy thing to face. Luckily you do not have to face it on your own. Our admissions counselors and professionals are available around the clock. We are ready to help you or a loved one overcome the disease of addiction. Now is the time to change your life. Let us help you do it.