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6 Myths About Methadone Treatment

After battling a heroin addiction for two of the longest years of my young life, I finally found methadone and am now completely off drugs.

How to overcome a heroin addiction

How to overcome a heroin addiction

Opiate Addiction Medication

According to Emmett Velten, Ph. D., rumors thrive under two conditions: high emotion and a lack of education. "The rumors and mythology surrounding methadone treatment may differ from normal rumors, because the emotionality surrounding methadone largely causes the lack of information about it. What causes the emotionality? Prejudice!"

For some reason, methadone, a medication used to get addicts away from heroin (thus getting them away from using and/or sharing contaminated needles, contracting Hepatitis C or HIV, and engaging in other high-risk behaviors), is connected to the same negative stigma as heroin abuse itself. Due to this misinformation, there are a large number of myths about methadone that simply are not true.

Myth #1: Trading One Addiction for Another

Truth: Methadone patients are dependent on their medication the same way a diabetic is dependent on his insulin; it is not an addiction. When either patient does not take their medication on time as prescribed, they become sick.

According to the DSM-IV, methadone does not meet the requirements of an addictive drug. An addictive drug leads to significant impairment in functioning, causes the addict to continue to use despite related problems, and results in an increase in tolerance, meaning that over time more and more of the drug is needed to achieve the same effect. Opiate addiction is a brain disorder that causes permanent brain damage when used long-term. Methadone stabilizes the brain chemistry that heroin first deranged.

Myth #2: It's Synthetic Heroin

Truth: Heroin is an illegal narcotic sold on the street by gun-wielding strangers. It may be cut with any number of additives, so that when ingested the user has no idea what he is putting into his body. Addiction at its worst may cause the user to beg, lie or even steal to acquire the large amount of money needed to fund a heroin addiction. IV drug users often develop dangerous abscesses and infections on their arms and legs. Life as a heroin addict is chaotic and clandestine, and the user quickly finds himself in a downward spiral. Methadone, on the other hand, is prescribed by a doctor and dispensed by nurses in a medical facility. Methadone, by eliminating withdrawal symptoms, stabilizes the client, thus allowing him to get his life back on track, secure a job, go back to school, properly care for his children, etc.

A methadone dispensing station at a clinic

A methadone dispensing station at a clinic

Myth #3: It Was Named After Adolf Hitler

Truth: The liquid suspension that is presently dispensed by nearly all clinics is called methadone (the generic name) or methadose (brand name). Although it was indeed invented in Germany, the methadone wafer that synthesized for use in the United States went by the brand name Dolophine, named after Vincent Dole (one of the New York physicians who marketed the drug). The "-phine" comes from the term morphine, named after Morpheus, the Greek god of dreams. It is mistakenly assumed that the "dolph" found in the word Dolophine actually comes from the "dolf" in Adolf Hitler.

The inside of a methadone clinic is not that unlike any doctor's office.

The inside of a methadone clinic is not that unlike any doctor's office.

Myth #4: Methadone Rots Your Teeth

Truth: Although there is no scientific evidence that fully explains why, heroin addicts have a never-ending craving for sugar that causes them to consume massive amounts of sweets: gum, candy, and especially chocolate. When someone plunges into the deep abyss of addiction, personal hygiene tends to fall by the wayside. Dentist and doctor appointments are no longer a priority, and showering gets fit in to the schedule when it can. The same goes for brushing one's teeth. Everything that used to matter is overshadowed by the great monster of drug addiction, which trumps all, not to mention that heroin is the ultimate pain reliever, masking toothaches and any other oral sensitivities.

Because of this, when a person finally begins to take a step in the right direction and starts taking methadone, their dental hygiene is way below average. One of the side effects of methadone is that it may give you dry mouth, much in the same way that many other medications do, as well. This may cause your teeth to produce more plaque, therefore leading to tooth decay and gum disease.

Truth: Stabilized methadone patients who are on an adequate dose of methadone (not too high and not too low, and taken every day as prescribed) are indistinguishable from the rest of society. They hold down jobs, own homes and raise families. Many people consider methadone to be a life saver, and as long as the dose is not too high and causing the patient to feel drowsy, taking it causes clients to feel normal rather than euphoric, messed up, tranquilized or high.

Myth #6: It’s Harder to Get Off Methadone Than Heroin

Truth: Because methadone has a longer half-life than heroin, withdrawal from it is slower and longer if one was to stop taking it suddenly. Medically supervised withdrawal, on the other hand, where the client is gradually decreased over time under a doctor‘s supervision, can be relatively free of pain and discomfort.

I Am Living Proof

After battling a heroin addiction for two of the longest years of my young life, I decided to take control and get clean. I tried both Suboxone and Subutex, but was unsuccessful. My doctor, an addictions specialist with 17 years of experience, told me, "Some people just do better on methadone."

I enrolled in a methadone maintenance program in Pennsylvania, and after two months, I stabilized and was off street drugs completely. I stabilized at 120mgs, and after I had one year clean, I started decreasing blindly (which meant having the nurses cross out my dose) and sloooooowly, and on my own timetable—not anyone else's.

It took me eight years to get off it. But it took that many years because I was being cautious, I was in no rush to be off it completely, and I paused the decrease if I ever felt the slightest discomfort in order to let my body adjust. In October 2011, I came off it completely after I got down to 1mg, which is the way it's supposed to be done, and I felt hardly any physical withdrawal symptoms upon doing so.

If you or someone you know is struggling with an addition to heroin, OxyContin, Roxys, Percocet, Vicodin, Fentanyl, morphine or any other opiate, methadone is one of several treatment options worth looking into.

Resources and More Information

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.


Kristie Sabado on April 07, 2020:

I took methadone for two years for my back. That was 10 years ago. I can not be sedate or drugged for any reason. It would not be that big of a deal except for several surgery. What if I did from a painful condition? I will be screw. I have passed kidney stones were the regular doe of med. does not. They all think I am a raging drug addict,

Angelina on June 13, 2018:


My name is Angelina I just would like to say how can you tell people methadone will ruin your life?! It saved mine and many others I know. I been clean 1 year straight this month. Simply because of my treatment plan, meetings and other structured meetings with my counslure. Please don't listen to "steve" here work your program don't let it work you!. Steve there is absolutely NO WAY IN HELL why you should be on 200mg! I don't care how long you used or how big you are! You wanted to feel some kind of euphoria from it sounds like. Had you been on "your stable" dose this might of been a positive step towards living a normal life in society. Had you been using the program right you would of graduated where your family would of been so proud you beat this demon and now have the right tools to never ever go back! I'm dosing down and graduating myself and b4 that I phased where I only came in to get my 50mg for a year never needed to go up cause I was stable! Exactly where I should be! Not trying to put a horse down on 200mg! Jeeze! So please I had to let someone read a reply to this .. PLEASE PLEASE anyone struggling with addiction think about all your options and then think about how long you have been using some form of anything over time..... Now I'm telling you this could be the best decision you will ever make in your life!.. I'm going to be 29 getting married next year planning now

Eliza on October 25, 2017:

I was on heroine over a year and now I been on methadone a year so I been clean of heroine a year I started at 60ml and down to 30 but I started reducing mine every 3 days about 2 ml I don't want to be on it I was ashamed I touched heroine and I'm ashamed I'm on methadone none of my family or friends know I collect and take in secret. I feel weak I came on methadone but I couldn't handle the withdrawal of the heroine but I won't be staying on this for years Ive been coming down my dose my self for a month and half and I'm determined to be rid of it so I don't need anything when I wake up because I can't go out or anything because how crap I feel and I really don't want this life I want to experience life not relay on something to get me through never ever I touch heroine again biggest mistake of my life.

I won't say I hope I be of for next year I say I will be with all my will power.

I know I only pick up my methadone one a week and I'm unsupervised but can't be bothered no more with it anymore enough is enough.

Steve on September 06, 2017:

I was on methadone for 9 years up to 200 mg I stopped cold turkey. I got sick and withdrawal lasted almost 2 months .I'm talking mental as well I wasn't gonna pay for that anymore. Methadone will ruin you're life just as heroine did. your family will fade away you're relationship will die as well. In my opinion I felt like shit taking it and I think people on methadone are weak anyone can go through wd just deal with it who cares you did it to yourself. Thanks

ChrisStoltz, Norway on August 19, 2017:

To JV: I SEE youre om 240mgs methadone. I have been on IT myself since 2003, with a year off IT And i am now back on IT . My experience has been that in the first 5-7 years on IT i craved heroin every day almost and the effects of methadone depressed me, but AS the years go by and i forgot my old life , i started to Get more positive effects of the methadone, Even the good heroin feel... so IT just takes a lot of time to Get there! Promise!!!! I Also learned that If i GOT just 10mg less than i needed i felt crappy and real abstinent, and if i GOT to much IT also gave me abstinens in a way, so IT IS SO IMPORTANT TO FIND THE ABSOLUTE OPTIMAL DOSE FOR YOURSELF!!This is the absolut most important thing to remember about methadone. They say that if you first stabilize on lets say 100mg, then in the next 20 years you will have to steadily increase to 150mg. This is the toleranse faktor that researcher has determined to be the case for most people. IT can feel like a prison being on M, but you Get Wiser AS the years go by and SEE IT AS the miracle IT is!!! Stick with IT guys and gals! Dont let your bad conscience for feeling well lead you to gamble with to early off tapering!! Been there! Bad idea!!

Good luck

Nick on August 18, 2017:

This is my problem with methadone, and it's the same I have with alot of pharmaceutical drugs.

Under the PROPER supervision and taken for the right reasons it can be VERY successful like in the story we just read.

The problem I've personally seen (a methadone clinic is in my town and know in 1 form or another 8 patients there. 6 of them use it cause it cuts out their opiate bill leaving more money for other drugs.

Alex on August 15, 2017:

Does anyone else feel like these corporate type clinics dont care just $$$$

Jv on August 11, 2017:

Please listen to me......I've been on methadone for 10 yrs now. I'm presently on 240mgs. Yes,240. I want to kick myself every time I think about it. And it's this-as you will see, because you want relief NOW. If I would,could have been strong enough at the time to think,ok I'm going from one powerful med. to one that's as powerful or more (not the buzz). What sense did that make. I should have quit the other cold turkey and not got into a privately owned company that'll dispense med. that makes you come back every day for a time.? Now even after a year wasn't strong enough and it didn't help that the privately run companies witch are methadone companies saying 'oh here's some more mg's of our drug that'll do the trick. But it only makes you crave the buzz more! You understand what I'm saying without me having to write a book. Get off whatever you're on. That's it !You think that will be hard,then try getting off methadone!!

Cherrie on August 03, 2017:

I am trying to find a doctor who is not afraid to prescribe this medication methadone to me my last doctor left the practice or was fired and now I am stuck with no help. What do I do? Help me

Karl on July 31, 2017:

As Katie said & more!!! No matter what you want to do; e.g. say hypothetically you wanted to start writing a positive affirmation each morning to help change your negative thinking. This is stupid I realize, you don't have to tell the clinic you are doing this. But if you did, they would get involved and make you jump through as many hoops as possible.

If their point is to make you angry and say "see, you don't want to be on drugs," is one thing. But when you try to go down in dose they make it harder than going up in dose. Why??

They seem to be major control freaks and are worse than any drug dealers I have dealt with. I haven't met "ONE" person that has said I went through an MMT. I went up to the proper dose. Went through the phases, started lowering my dose and now I am drug free. I haven't even heard of anyone like that. Makes you wonder?? Does me at least.

One last thing: They are never wrong about anything & they are very dishonest...that's 2 things, sorry. But they are never wrong! Like Trump! He could work in an MMT!!

Katie on July 24, 2017:

So what if the clinic you are going to isn't helping you get off methodone? My husband has been clean for 4 years, has expressed his desire to decrease, and they keep making him jump through hoops to get it done. He has to see a doctor any time he wants to decrease, which means scheduling appointments he doesn't have time for because he works. But any time he wants to increase they can do it right there and have no problem with that. A few months ago he FINALLY got them to start lowering him, someone stole his afternoon doses for that week (we know who) and he was just trying to tough it out. Finally he called, (he didn't call at first because he didn't want to lose his carrying privileges, as his clinic is an hour away) and they allowed him an extra dose. When he told them how bad he had been feeling ( for obvious reasons) they increased his dose without his knowledge! He was livid. All the pain he went through that week and he could have stayed at the few mg he went down, they ruined it. Just recently he discovered they upped his dose another 10mg, no clue when they did that. We are getting sick of it but what can he do? He is on 150mg now, there is a waiting list for the other clinic near us. (This clinic also LIED to him about being on the waiting list for the other one.) We just don't know what steps to take. Hebhas never failed a drug test, so we had the thought that they are just keeping him there as long as possible because he makes their numbers look good. Hes so done with this, but not sure what to do when the people who are supposed to be helping, aren't.

Whitney dunlap on June 21, 2017:

As a long time user of pain meds i also have found that methadone at a low dose has truly saved my life. I was on a downward spiral a never ending road . I though it waa ok because i had a legit reason to take the pills not to meantion my doctor was prescribing them to me and that made it ok bc i was buying off the street. Well after loosing my doctor bc he all the sudden after 8 years of prescribing to me decided 2017 they would no longer be taking my insurance. So doctor jackson (well known to many pill addicts) left me high and dry i was so sick o though i was going to die. I always heard about the clinic but near though twice about it untill i woke up one day realized ive lost pretty much everything i had and my kids were next if i didnt make that decision to change my lifestyle. I asked God what did i do please lord help me guide me !!! And he did!!!! Im now 76 days clean of opiods!!!! I go to the clinic every day its helped me het my life back on track. I went from loosing my house my vehicles never could hold a job down toeverything to getting on track!!!! I have a full time job that i absolutely love! It feels great to work hard for my kids and to make money for them because they deserve a great life! I now have a nice van that runs great and fits me and my kids perfect! Im working to save for a house for me and my kids. Cant wait to get us out of this extended stay but i cant even complain bc atleast were not in a shelter.Gods is soooo good to me and has never let me down... He might of gave me an eye opener but i thank him for that bc i wouldnt be on the path im on now if it wasnt for him showing me what i was doing wrong in life and i remember crying alone in a hotel room i had never felt more alone or helpless in my whole 32 years on this earth .... I remember getting on my knees praying out loud harder than ive ever prayed in my life asking him to please just give me this last chance and i will do right by him. Well after being alone without my kids for a whole 24 hours i got a call and i knew then God answered my prayers . i started the clinic that monday but the next night i had a bed full of kids and i promised from then on they are number one nomatter what my kids and God!!!! Im truly blessed!!!! Im so happy and it feels great holding a job and taking my kids to the movies ,park , etc. They are awesome kids!!!! Methadone gave me a second chance at life and if your on that downward spiraling never ending road i truly suggest trying this!

Christina Pleate on June 19, 2017:

This article was written by criminals spreading government information for the purpose of public control and dependency and ultimately. ..population control! I am on this Drug and it is killing me. It has caused me more medical problems than thought possible. It was created by hitler to keep his soldiers fighting days on end with need for sleep, food, and to mask pain from . IT WAS NEVER INTENDED FOR LONG TERM USE!!! NO DOCTORS ARE ALLOWED TO TAKE ANYONE OFF OF IT...BUT WHY....BECAUSE IT IS A CONSPIRACY TO CONTROL THE POPULATION. .... ENSURE THAT OUR PLANET HAS ENOUGH RESOURCES FOR THE RICH. IT IS EVIL AND I RATHER THEY JUST PUT ME OUT OF MY MISERY BECAUSE THE SUFFERING IS UNIMAGINABLE AND I WOULDN'T WISH IT UPON MY WORST ENEMY. I HOPE SOMEONE DOES SOMETHING FOR US SOON BECAUSE I DON'T KNOW HOW MUCH MORE I CAN TAKE!!

Jessica on June 16, 2017:


Lisa on June 10, 2017:

I have been on methadone for 14 years. Me and my husband is on it. We are senior citizens and it’s getting so hard to pay for the clinic. We both got on pain pills spending a lot of money on the pain pills. To get to the point yes Methadone saved our life but cost it getting bad on us they charge us 400$ a person. We just can’t afford it we can’t get no one to help us . I have RA and other medical issues . I heard getting off of the Methadone is awful. I live in Memphis tn if anyone has any suggestions to help us get help to pay for this drug please comment. Thank yall

SARAH on June 05, 2017:

I am a recovering addict and while I genuinely believe that Methadone and DRT can be life saving for many - it is not medication like a diabetic taking insulin. It is entirely possible to get clean and stay clean without DRT. That is real freedom for those who want it. For someone with no desire to get clean methadone may save their life - great. But for anyone who is interested in getting clean methadone is a shackle and worse withdrawal than opiates. If you're interested in getting clean and are willing to change yourself and your life check out a 12 step meeting.

Leslie on May 04, 2017:

I've been a patient on methadone for 17 years. Don't judge me please unless you know my story. There are reasons that I've been on so long.

However, if I had never got on the MMT, I'd be dead today.

I was a severe heroin, morphine user for 7-8 years. It saved my life and gave me my life back!!!

I was almost off at one time but a very traumatic experience has kept me on the MMT. I'm not in a hurry to come off. My life is great and thank you to the man that created Methadone. I was one of those people who thought Hitler was the creator.

I read someone's blog and they were saying that their spouse was going through major withdrawal from coming off Methadone. That their spouse was being reined off in a controlled way and they were down to 1 mg. and going thru the worst withdrawal. I'm here to say that this is happening for 1 of 2 reasons.

1) he wasn't being taken down off the Methadone properly and that's why the withdrawal or,

2) he's still using other dope and wasn't ready himself, to come off!

It is highly unlikely that it is #1. The Drs who become MMT doctors can't just do it. They must get certificates and go thru many hours of training. If anyone is going thru that much withdrawal, it is probably because they reverted back to opiate abuse.

Thanks for letting me share!!

God Bless everyone and have an awesome day!!!

Eric on April 30, 2017:

Can a methadone clinic cut your dose without telling you

Stephanie on December 29, 2016:

This article is BS. My husband started going to a Methadone clinic 3 years ago to stop his costly hydrocodone addiction. It has been awful. They are legal drug pushers and need to be stopped. He asked them 1 year ago to taper him off. They asked if he was sure he wanted to do that, and in the same visit offered to increase his dose. It's all about money. They did start tapering him. 1 month ago he was down to 1mg and got so tired of them he stopped going. It has been rough. Insomnia, shaking, anxiety, diarrhea, and entire body pain. He should have just tapered himself off of the pills 3 years ago. This prolonged the inevitable withdrawal symptoms and cost him money. It is trading one addiction for another. If you're ready to stop drug use, and choose Methadone, the quicker you taper the better. The longer you take this drug, the longer it takes for your body to reset. Also, there is temptation outside with people trying to sell drugs in the parking lot. If you're not able to qualify for take homes, you can't go on vacation. The drug controls you. I would recommend a detox center. I can't believe these "clinics" are legal. I don't feel being addicted to a drug for years is a proper treatment. It is sad. Don't give these so called "clinics" your business or the satisfaction to control you!

Bama Girl on November 28, 2016:

I was put on Methadone from a called "PAIN MANAGEMENT DOC" - who thought he RULED THE WORLD!!! Took me off my pain pills and put me on methadone. To lead up to that point, this is what had happened prior to that: Had bi-lateral total hip replacements in Jan & Feb of 2004. After healing from those surgeries, my Orthopedic Doc found some other health issue's that I was going to have to deal with in the future. Some surgical and some that I was going to have to deal with taking medications. Issues with my Muscular & Skeletal Systems. As time went on my Orthopedic Doc retired. At that point, my Family Doc said to continue my pain meds, I would have to see a Pain Management Doc. I did. He d/c my regular pain meds and put me on "THE DEADLY METHADONE!!". This was around Feb 06. I have never done street drugs. Didn't have a computer. Was younger than I am now. So, I didn't know what I was getting myself into. As time went by, I gained 70 lbs, ended up finding out that one of my meds shouldn't of been with methadone, that methadone gets in your bone marrow, one of my underline health issues methadone makes it worse, and my list could go on... Got tired of living this way!!! So, I made up my mind(I'm the kind of person that when my mind is made up, I'M GOING TO DO IT!!-PERIOD) that's it. So the next day, March 25th, 2009 I stopped and never looked back. I remember crying my eyes out, saying "I'm dope sick-I never did street drugs and I did what I was told to do"!! I felt as if MY CHARACTER, MY INTEGRITY AND MY PRIDE was gone FOREVER!! That everything I worked so hard to be, was flushed down the toilet!! IT WAS THE HARDEST THING I HAVE EVER DONE!!!! THE SICKEST I HAVE EVER BEEN!!!! I WAS EMOTIONALLY/MENTALLY HURTING MORE THAN IVE EVER BEEN!!!! BUT, I MADE IT, BY THE GRACE OF GOD & THE LOVE OF MY FAMILY!!!MARCH 25, 2017 will be 8 yrs off of prescription pain pill methadone, and EVERYDAY I THANK GOD THAT I'M NOT ON THAT MEDICATION!!!! Sorry, I tried to keep it short. Methadone prescription pain meds should only be given to those who are going to be on it indefinitely. Good Luck to Everyone (:

Jamison on October 18, 2016:

Obviously there are benefits of using methadone over heroin because it is regulated and of course it has saved lives but you are in denial if you don't think being on methadone is the same thing as being high on heroin. I've been clean for 5 years and I think it's sad people talk themselves into believing methadone is not stopping them from getting out of the fake life of opiates. Your mind is still broken. I remember in my early stages of experimenting with drugs I took methadone recreationally and I have never felt so good and high in my entire life. You may not feel high when using the methadone just like you don't feel high when using heroin after a tolerance. This article is so misleading I felt inclined to comment and I have literally never got engaged with online commenting before.

Cristian pina on October 03, 2016:

Hello every one im a 38 year old male the first time I've used here and when I was 15 years old I went to prison at 17 years old been in and out of jail ever since got involved with gangs lived on the streets now I've been clean for 3 months the longest I've ever been clean without having to be in jail and I'm on methadone I'm in the clinic have been there for months the first month I was still using little by little and noticed my way of thinking started changing my old friends are no longer friends of mine my old girlfriend used to get high with me I pushed you away now I'm on a hundred milligrams I've been working a good job I'm on my way to get my first apartment feeling good about myself visiting a church and when I was getting high I was about to kill myself I was tired of life I hate myself from my experience methadone has saved my life it may be different for others but it helped me a lot God bless everybody

Martine on September 01, 2016:

Methadone is far more addictive then Heroin. It is also much worse for you. I haver been on Methadone for a year now. I HATE it. I have gained so much weight, and so does everyone else I see at the clinic, NO EXCEPTIONS! And I don't mean just a few pounds. i mean they come in looking healthy, and end up obese. The councilors LIE and say it is because you are rediscovering food, or have cravings. NONSENSE. I have no cravings, and I ate far more before I started Methadone, because I wasn't terrified each bite would turn into thirty pounds. I now starve myself, and it still isn't helping. Finally, i decided to lower my dose. My councilor said I should wait. So, I started sneaking less, and they started forcing me to take the full dose. I skipped all the days I got from take outs, and it helped, but I hated being forced to drink poison by these smiling hypocrites. I was afraid to go cold turkey, but at some point, i will have no choice. I wish i never even heard of Methadone. The dealers never forced me to take drugs. They treated me with respect. The people at the clinic treat me like a non person whose opinions about their own life do not matter. This has really changed my mind about government programs in general. I now think we need to get off this liberal path, or all of our decisions will be made by well meaning idiots like the people at the clinic. Methadone causes sweating, weight gain, hormone depletion, and worse. It shortens your life. It is a terrible drug, and Methadone Clinics are terrible places that crush your soul. I suppose there are some people who like to be treated like sheep, and to get a free high( and YES IOT DOES MAKE YOU HIGH! Its alot of fun for three hours at its peak. If it didn't have such awful side effects, i might even have stayed just for that.) Don't kid yourself, the people who write articles like this are just afraid their drug will be taken from them. So they work on convincing people who don't know any better. Methadone is a trap. Yes, I was not doing well before I was at the clinic. But they should have warned me of the terrible things that would happen. I will not go through life as a fat pig, no matter what else is going on. They need to make a drug that does not cause metabolism problems, even if you have to take it more often.

Rachael Ryhn - Jones from Forest Lake, MN on March 17, 2016:

Methadone is not addictive? If you were to meet my father and uncle you'd know otherwise. The American Psychiatric Association (who created the DSM-IV) better revise their research and listen to those that know the truth such as the US Department of Health and Narconon.

Jason on December 12, 2015:

There is a lot of different people out there and methadone effects are different on everyone I don't agree that methadone is a good choice, if you can try and get yourself off the other drug first, methadone isn't for someone who thinks they can help themselves cause methadone is a wild ride and you are going to have some serious withdrawals and serious mood swings, methadone for me was a bad choice my emotions were all over the place I got depression from it and I came to a point that I had to get off of it I feel so much better being off methadone and clean I'm now making better life decisions I'm no longer depressed like I was, no more mood disorders and I'm going to school

Bryan on October 02, 2015:

Its been years since I have posted anything on this page. I have a home now an a wonderful women. My son and I have a great relationship and I also have a great job that I have been at for several years. I haven't had any trouble with the Law since I stopped using I go to work every day and I am happier than I have ever been. I wish I could git rid of every post on here that I put up years ago. I was angry and blaming other people for my own problems. Methadone is a poison, far worse than anything I ever took before. When I was addicted I wanted anything to ease the "pain" and I chose this drug . These people did not come find me. They are out to make a buck off of you if you are hooked and a drug dealer can sell you anything when you are hurting . I don't blame them because after I kicked methadone I have not wanted any opiates since. If You have survived this drug You will know what I am talking about. A week or two in detox at a hospital is far better than METHADONE IT SHOULD BE TAKEN OFF THE MARKET

NeverUmind on May 21, 2014:

i have been a patient for almost 6 years and although it did save my life and kept me out of prison it should be a last resort for people who can not stop any other way and it actually has rotted my teeth i think it is all the sugar in it and for some reason it does act strange on my stomach some days i find i am nauscious until my dose takes effect and i get hungry all of a sudden out of the blue and get the shakes if i dont eat at once so it does have some strange side effects but doesnt all drugs it has alot more positive than negative results thats for sure but again methadone should not be used recreational drug users or not for the occassional vicidon user it should be only a last resort for people like me a 20yr veteran heroin addict who has allready failed regular treatment 9 times i tried very very hard to quit but the cravings were just too strong and the anxiety that comes with the withdrawyl was unbearable so for these reason i thank our government for the little compasion they do have thank you for allowing me to use methadone legally sincerly Neverumind p.s. METHADONE TREATMENT IS A PRIVELEDGE NOT A RIGHT SO RESPECT IT AND DO IT RIGHT CAUSE YOU CAN BE KICKED OUT REMEMBER THAT !!!!!!!!

brian on May 09, 2014:

I have never used a street opiate, but take methadone for pain due to having MS. Methadone is a godsend for me. I would not be outside my home without the relief it gives me. I'm tired of the demonizing that surrounds opiate pain medications from those who don't have chronic pain. For disclosure, I have used other drugs in the past for recreation. I came across this post because i was wondering if anyone had noticed the flat out lies about methadone on the tv show House . I guess I shouldn't be surprised that Hollywood got it wrong. The media carry a lot of the weight in causing the demonization issue and so much other misinformation. Thanks to several good books we now know some in the industry do it on purpose. Especially on social issues. I know this is the wrong forum for pain issues. However, the populous need to know that a lot of people are helped by opiates, and need to understand that demonizing them in general does a disservice.

fburg on May 07, 2014:

I have been on meth program now for 4months. I am on 140mg. I work 13hr days n don't nodd out any. When I was on street drugs I weighed 90lbs now I'm healthy n weigh 130. My counselor at my clinic is my Angel. She cares. The whole staff cares. And that makes a big difference. My counselor told me about vitadone. Just started taking it. Went to the dentist after 6 years being on street drugs and the dentist was amazed. Its so nice having money now. I can do things now that I haven't done in years like go on vactions. Yes, methadone clinics have guest dosing. I enjoyed the ocean for the first clean n sober. I have a long way to go but with help and my detemination. I will survive. Thanks FCCR.

brandon on May 02, 2014:

All u people talking shit about methadone dont no shit u all areprobably still using or wanna use herion the kick from heroin

is way worse than methadone u have to be tapered off properly when tapered off u dont withdrawal barely at all it took a week on herion it took over a month

sickofthebs on February 17, 2014:

Really people, who isn't addicted to something?!?! OH god, the doctor prescribed this medication, that makes it ok, NOT, and if you are on this medication, DO NOT get pregnant, your poor asses cant get off the med, but yet we have to try to get your infant off?!? Its BS!!

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on February 13, 2014:

@Jim - That's correct. Six years ago when I wrote that comment, I'd been on methadone for about 4 years (from 2003-2008). I got off of it 4 years later, at the end of 2011. So yes, I was on it for 8 years total.

Jim on February 12, 2014:


I know that it's been many years since you wrote your comment, but I'd just like to point a few things out. Maybe someone got to it first, but I'm going to do it anyway.

If you truly are the author you said that you were on methadone for 8 years in the article, 4 in your comment. You also said that you reduced until you were at 1mg and then quit in the article, but your comment said that you are still on it.

What's up with that?

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Dimo on October 23, 2013:

I am with the author of this article. If you take your dose down slowly and correctly like you are supposed to, you will only have a tiny amount of withdrawal, IF IF IF you even have any. I have been on methadone for 5 years. At one point I was on 128mgs. Now I am on 31mg. I am getting off it very slowly. This has been a two year process to get this far. But, I am telling you I never had a problem and I wont. Never once have I even had a tiny amount of discomfort. One of the firsts posts on this article is someone stating they withdrew for three weeks. Well then, they didn't do it the right way. You can take it down 1mg or 2mg's a month and you will be fine. Quit listening to the b.s. about being sick. I refuse to listen to any of it. For the people knocking methadone. Yes, it is physically and mentally addictive. But so is the medicine given to you when you get a root canal, or when you get surgery. What about the meat you are serving your family that is fed with steroids and antibiotics? You do know the sugar thats hidden in everything including milk is addicting too right? Do you really honestly think the food your eating is so much better than methadone? If you think what you are eating and putting in your body is better, then you really need to research Genetically modified food, the processed food, the beef thats fattened, the plastic you throw in the microwave and eat off, and the pans you cook in. We made our wrong choices and this is one of our options to fix the problem we created. Stop knocking methadone. Why cant people just be happy for someone thats taking steps to be a productive member of society? You would bash us no matter what. Its the people who take methadone and want to get high, or mix it with other drugs to make a cocktail that give methadone a bad name. There are a lot worse drugs out there than methadone. Lets talk about cumadin. Anyone know what that is? That's what a hospital gives you so you don't get a blood clot. Guess what, its partially rat poison. Just because methadone didn't work for you, or didn't work for someone you know doesn't mean it didn't help other people.

Phil M. on September 22, 2013:

What a load of lies. For starters, Methadone is an addictive narcotic. There is a huge difference between the connection between a diabetic and their insulin, and an opiate addict and methadone. I struggled with heroin addiction for over ten years and worked with both suboxone and methadone maintenance programs. Obviously the "doctor" that contributed to this article makes their living selling the substance. I'm sure most of my old heroin dealers would claim that heroin is a wonder drug as well. Using definitions from the DSM-IV is horribly misleading and this quack should lose their license.

streetguy on July 28, 2013:

I am a Methadone patient for 13 years and I must it has it's ups and down's more up's but I was a JUNKIE for some 10 years and I will never get off Methadone. I'm a scumbag and the minute I'm off i'd be shooting heroin and sticking people up to get my fix. I have hurt so many people while being on Heroin. But on Methadone I haven't committed 1 crime . It's a life saver I have the same job for 8 years

LoriQ on May 26, 2013:

I think these clinics take advantage of people's addiction and your insurance. The couselors scare you into thinking the withdrawals will be so bad for you if you decrease your dose too quickly. Methadone, if it does work, should be used as a short term thing. In my experience the clinic keeps people on longer than necessary for the money. I mean it makes sense. The clinic is a for profit business. If people got off methadone too soon they would be losing money don't you think? I also think they hope you do relapse. It would be repeat business for them. There needs to be a better way. Maybe I would think differently if my counselor hadn't lied to me and be inconsistant with her "treatment plan." I'll give you a recent example of her inconsistencies. The other day I told her I wanted a 21 day detox. She drew up the paper after she tried to convince me I was doing the wrong thing. I signed the paper and then she said she had to have a dr. sign it but there was no doctors in that day. She told me she would see if nursing can sign it and to have a seat in the lobby. A half hour later she comes out and tells me to take 24 hours to think about the 21 day detox to make sure it's not an emotional decision. I go to dose and I saw they decreased me. Now why did I get a decrease before I gave her my decision? I'm sure she wouldn't have decreased me if I never had asked for a 21 day detox.

TREfromNYC on May 25, 2013:

Ok...... So methadone allows me and many others to not live their previous lifestyle .. If it means at the moment I am addicted to methadone so be it. I'm a much better person for it. If given the choice to continue what i was doing or go into a program I would still make the same choice. It's also a persons choice whether or not they want to join a program so noone is "getting them addicted to another." Especially if some (most definitely not all)people begin to live normal lives instea of lying, cheating and stealing. The goal ultimately is to get off methadone, that's not a great lifestyle by any means but it sure as shit beats what I was doing. If I destroyed my life with pain mess for 6+ years my life isn't going to be fixed in 6+ months so there's no rush but there is an end at some point.

LoriQ on May 24, 2013:

No I disagree. A junkie is a lifestyle. That was never my lifestyle. I am not judging. I am explaining my situation. Comparing maybe. Not judging. The only reason I mentioned my counselor's criminal history is because I believe they have something on her or she owes them and she does what they tell her. Of course people become a productive member of society while on methadone. It's still an opiate. You are still feeding your addiction. The goal should be to get you off drugs. Not get you addicted to a different one.

TREfromNYC on May 24, 2013:

As per the last comment, yes u are a junkie. U said it yourself, u were prescribed Vicodin and abused it. You will never get clean because u apparently don't even realize u have a problem. I am a junkie too. I abused pills for years same as u. The difference is I know that I have a problem. As for your comments about your clinic.... That's terribly sad. I don't know what clinic you go to (nor do I care) but my clinic u can't get an increase whenever u ask and u can come down however fast u want or however slow. Also... If your counselor was a perfect member of society with no criminal history or drug past I'm sure you would be on here complaining about your clinic and how the counselor a can't relate to u. Don't judge the man next to you online waiting for his dose. We are all in the same boat. Some people can't survive or be productive members of society without meth, some become worse than they were on opiates. Don't go in there with a Holier than thou attitude otherwise you'll never get straight. Hope you figure it out I really do. And for the record, I'm a productive member of society now, I own two businesses, one online based, one construction, I take care of my disabled mother who's been sick for two years and I'm living with the disease of addiction. I am also a convicted felon (I was 16 and no I didn't get youthful offender status) and a good person. So like I said. Don't judge the man on line next to u, were all ultimately in the same boat.

LoriQ on May 22, 2013:

Ok here's the thing. I was addicted to prescription Vicodin. It was prescribed to me for my back. Somehow I became addicted to it and took more than I was supposed to then it got bad enough I had to buy more to last the month. I only bought them for the last 2 months before I started with the methadone clinic. I was in a fog and I recently opened my eyes and now I see what these clinics are like. They use psychology and methadone to brain wash you into thinking they are helping you. They are NOT helping you. These cunselors are trianed to keep you on methadone longer than you need to be to keep the cash flowing. That is the ONLY thinkg these clinics care about. The money! If you believe that methadone is helping you than yes you are a victim of a methadone clinic. I know people are going to say but methadone saved their lives and it was the best thing they could have done blah blah blah. They keep you on this drug because they know the longer you are on it and the higher the amount you are on the longer it takes for you to come off it if you ever do. Just look how easy it is to get an increase. Try to ask for a decrease and see what happens. The first thing out of their mouths is, "YOU ARE NOT READY." And if they do give you a decrease see how much of one you get. Maybe 2.5? Maybe? Ask for a 10mg increase and you'll get it the same day. Sure methadone will make you be able to hold a job. But hey if heroin was legal and it cost the same or could get it with your insurance card you would be doing the same thing. You would feel fine. But what if you decide you don't want to do drugs anymore. What if you decide you want to stop methadone? They will drag you on for as long as they can to keep you there to milk your insurance. I've had enough. I am seeing my counselor tomorrow and I am telling, not asking, her I want a 21 day detox. That is MY right because this is MY life. If I have to I will fight and expose this clinic. My counselor has been in so much trouble with the law she has a criminal history a mile long. She used to be a patient there. Now she works there which tells me they helped her out of her trouble and now she owes them. I'm gonna tell her maybe she sold her soul to the devil for this place but I didn't. I don't owe that place anything. They owe me back my sanity. Like I said they will find any excuse not to decrease you. If you have an itch in the wrong spot they will stop you. Heck with this garbage. I have never been a "junkie" and I never will. I do not have a criminal history, never even been fingerprinted, has 1 parking ticket in my life and I am not going to bring myself down any further than I allowed this clinic to bring me.

Major Matt Mason on May 03, 2013:

Arguing over which opiate to use seems rather absurd, methadone as a treatment was originally for heroin however it is now being used to treat Rx drug addiction One Rx Narcotic to treat another, perhaps in 10 years they will be treating methadone "dependence" with Oxycontin Methadone is a powerful Narcotic, and is no different than any other Narcotic, it may last longer in your system A person who is stable on any dose of any Narcotic will function "normally" The long half life may actually be an impediment to getting off the stuff, Oxycontin has a much shorter half life...If you are going to use an opiate it might as well be the one that you find works best for you

nikers on April 28, 2013:

I'm quoting from Methadone rots your teeth.

" heroin addicts have a never-ending craving for sugar that causes them to consume massive amounts of sweets--gum, candy, and especially chocolate"

This is a myth also. Not all heroin addicts have these cravings. As a former addict & former methadone patient this is funny. We would often talk about these myths in group. I never had these cravings as a user and large majority of people I've dealt with over the years have not either. It's just another stereotype put out there.

Also not all addicts put their tooth care aside to have more money to get high. Although a lot do.

I was lucky. I had the means to care for my teeth. During my each 6 month checkup while I was using heroin my teeth were fine. No cavities no decay. Then I started on a methadone program. After about a year my dentist noticed i was having more cavities and thinning of enamel each time I went. Reluctantly I confided in him. I'm glad I did. He said he see this more often then he would like too in his practice. Methadone reduces the product the production of saliva significantly more than heroin does. It's not enough to brush and floss after every meal. While on methadone you need to brush with a soft bristle toothbrush up to 6 times a day, using an antiseptic mouthwash each time. You must also use saliva producing tools in between. If you don't your teeth will rot.

Methadone clinics do not tell you this. The FDA does not require instructions to be labeled on the bottle or a list of side effects to be given to the patient. Unless you investigate yourself you do not know what I'll effects the medication can have. I find this to be prejudice. Even something as small as aspirin is required to list side effects and directions for use. Every prescription filled is required to do this. But when you take home your Methadone it's just a bottle with your name and dose.

I feel it irresponsible of the FDA not to require this. Just because someone is an addict doesn't mean that they don't deserve to be informed.

Betty Cuthbert on February 18, 2013:

A word of caution about long term methadone use - i have a friend who was on a relatively small dose of methadone for about 23 years. One day she realised she could not tolerate methadone any more or any form of opiate or any drug that affects the nervous system and she had no more craving for drugs and taking even a drop of methadone or any opiate will give her 'overdosing' effects. Now 5 months later she still suffers from anxiety coughing and shortness of breath. It could be another year before her health returns to somewhere near normal.

(hopefully). This could happend to you after very long term drug use!

John on December 08, 2012:

That's the problem. Addicts hit rock bottoms so move to methadone treatments to be "in good standing" for trying t go clean. Fact is most are obtaining methadone off the street along with the clinical dosage so they maintain a good high without looking like an absolute pos. I do not abuse nor do any drugs, my son has been on oxy for 10 years, I have seen all the effects. Suboxone does work- I know someone on that. And there is another drug new to USA but old hat elswhere that works better. We must remember that pharma companies have old friends in governmentthat they hold hands with. It's about the money...

Sarah from Greensboro, N.C. on September 14, 2012:

I just started methadone about 3 weeks ago because I was on heroin extremely bad. I won't go into details, but my addiction caused me to do things I'm not proud of. Since on methadone, I have started a normal life finally. I think that if methadone is used properly & not abused, it is very effective.

bryan on July 26, 2012:

I have posted here befor some things i said i am asamed of. i no longer drink or take the methadone or subs. my habit was iv and smoking ops and also i rather engoyed crack cocaine after my dose it is possible to live a reagular life without durgs my habit lasted 20 years 5 of them on methadone the withdrawal from oc and H are bad I have experienced them both in jail however none were as bad as methadone this drug is horrible thy the constipation because it slowes the digestive tract and after a week of not being able to go to the bathroom then filallywith some form of laxative tou shit pine kones ...... is it worth it?? withdrawal from h and oc and her sister roxane is not nearaly as bad as methadone dont start wth thease deviles my life is great without anyones dose if anyone is on this stuff you will either die or get to a point where you are so discussced you will stop the pain releved now only gets bigger on methadone kick it and close thease places down one at a time live clean it is possible through jesus christ god bless

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Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on July 06, 2012:

@ Kristina - Thank you for your perspective. I base all of my articles on my own personal experience. I was addicted to heroin for two years, and was on methadone maintenance for eight years. As of today, I have seven years clean. (The last time I touched heroin was June 2005.) I successfully detoxed off methadone in October 2011, so I have nine months free from that as well.

Many people say that they are "addicted" to methadone; methadone advocates say they are "dependent". It's all a game of semantics. Technically, methadone does not fit the diagnostic criteria for being an addictive substance because you need LESS of it over time, not more, and because the right dose causes no impairment in functioning the way heroin or painkillers do.

That said, there was NO WAY I could have ever gone a day without my methadone dose. I agree with you. Yes, I would have been in massive withdrawal. Yes, if I had continued with the withdrawal it would have been longer and more painful than heroin withdrawal. That's why in the last paragraph I said: "Because methadone has a longer half-life than heroin, withdrawal from it is slower and longer if one was to stop taking it suddenly." Key word there is "suddenly".

If you are decreasing your dose slowly over time, however, and then do a medically supervised detox, there is virtually NO pain or discomfort. I am living proof of that.

Kristina on June 25, 2012:

Wow. This is insane. You are supplying the general public with more misinformation than I've ever read on the internet. Where in the hell did you get your information? I just detoxed for thirty days from suboxone (which is a maintenance drug, like methadone.) The main difference between the two is that methadone is a full antagonist and suboxone is a partial antagonist. That means that suboxone doesn't supply the same euphoric effect as methadone. If you think that methadone is not addictive, you are uneducated and ignorant. It is an opioid derivitive that is MORE PHYSICALLY ADDICTIVE THAN HEROIN. Suboxone and methadone are both stored in the muscles and tissue and they have a long half life which is why they can be detected in the system for up to thirty days or longer. Suboxone withdrawal made heroin withdrawal seem like a walk in the park. I was in detox for thirty days. Heroin addicts detox for seven- ten days. Any detox will tell you that opiate withdrawal lasts between one and two weeks. Methadone and suboxone withdrawal are longer lasting and more painful. You are misinforming the public and I'm so tired of reading posts written by people with no educational background in their subject matter and who haven't done their research. It's not addictive!!!!??? It regulates the brain!!!???? IT CAUSES MORE LONG TERM DAMAGE THAN OTHER OPIATES! The reason it is used as a maintenance drug is because it's "consistent" and "monitored." I abused suboxone! I took far more than I was supposed to and often bought more off the street when I ran out before my next doctor's appointment. Some of my closest friends abuse their methadone and then have to spend hundreds of dollars every week to buy more when they run out. The only myth here is the one you created when you decided to post this pile of bullshit. From a medical standpoint, you have absolutely NO IDEA what you're talking about. You're screwing with people's a little research...go to college...or just pick up a reputable book and read it. My God, I'm amazed that people actually buy into this ridiculousness. METHADONE ROTS YOUR TEETH BECAUSE IT IS OFTEN DISPENSED IN LIQUID FORM AND THE LIQUID CONTAINS MORE SUGAR THAN A TWELVE PACK OF SODA. Methadone also attacks the bone marrow where the red blood cells are produced in a person's body, and robs this area of calcium and other crucial minerals. PLEASE STOP POSTING FALSE INFORMATION. If you want to spend your life in denial about the long term effects of methadone and the physical, emotional, spiritual, and psychological DAMAGE it causes, fine. Keep it to yourself.

hope on June 04, 2012:

I have been on methadone for a year band a half since jan 2011 and have been clean that long. It saved and changed my life. I was addicted to oxycodone 30mgand would do as many as i could get my hands on. Taking methadone is NOT trading one addiction for another! Methadone is not just about getting off opiates its about getting away fromthe lifestyle. That lifestyle is part of the addiction...that chase that we all put ourselves thru everyday for that drug just to feel normal sometimes not even get high. The lifestyle was addicting for me and i truly believe that if you dont remove yourself from that life and from the people that live that life you will never get clean. you may for a few days or week but eventually you will cave. Methadone helped me remove myself from the life. I got high for the first 3 weeks when i started methadone and that was it...i was done. I As my dose went up, the drugs stopped "working."I wasn't really feeling the high like i used to and with the amount of money you spend it just stopped seeming worth it to me to bother spending money for nothing until one day I decided to see if i could get thru the day wihtoiut any drugs...and i did. And then i tried the next day and the next and before i knew it i was clean. Thats how methadone helped me. It helped decrease the craving for the drugs and I knew even if I did sniff an oxy I wouldn't even really feel it so I was able to start rationalizing it that way and kinda talk myself out of deciding to go cop a pill. Thats what it doesn't get you high and anybody that actually was an addict knows that. There are plenty of people that are on methadone that still get high and do drugs becasue they dont wanna get cleaan. yes you hear people talking about drugs at the clinic and there are plenty of people that dont want to get clean so they dont. You have to want to get clean for meth to work. If you dont wanna get clean its not gonna work. And agian if you dopnt get away from the life and the people its not gong to work either. I hate when I hear poeple bitching about this or that when you are standing in line. I agree with what somebody said about how we would wait hrs for our dealer or drive how far to get shit, wait in docotrs offices etc. I think about that all the time when I hear poeple complaining. I pay 65 dollars per week.. 65 dollars would not even get me thru 1 day when i was getting high. My only complaint is the stigma that goes along with meth. It has stopped me from applying for a new job out of fear of not passing a pre employment drug test. I wouldnt be here today if it wasnt for meth. i had tried to get clean before using suboxane that i coped on the street, i tried weening off pills, etc. Obviously it never worked. i never went to rehab but my issue with rehab is I feel like its like a vacation its not real life. The way you are on vacation is not the way you are in reallife. Sure you will be clean for the 30 or 90 days because u r in rehab but when you get outI feel like it would be really eaasy to slip right back into the life and the poeple, as many people do. yoo dont have anything to help with the cravings and thats how meth saved me. It takes time...doesnt happen over night and there are still the tough days...but time does make things easier little by little.

Worried on June 03, 2012:

My husband has been taking methadone for awhile...NOT prescribed. His friend gives it to him. He has lied about taking it and I'm concerned he may be addicted. I don't need lectures, please, I am truly worried.

Is this why he scratches his body all night? Is this why he twitches in his sleep and picks his face CONSTANTLY? His moods have been unpredictable and our marriage is falling apart.

What other symptoms are there to determine if he is still taking it?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

tisjinxremoving on May 17, 2012:

Just got done with my long taper fro 145 mg it has been an interesting ride I am on week two of no methadone the only thing I have had a problem with is sleeping and anxiety and some rls was expecting to feel horrible. My teeth are fine and so is my bones and digestion. it does work for some people

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on May 16, 2012:

@Victor - I respect your opinion and enjoy hearing other people's viewpoints, but your post kinda contradicts itself. You say your life as an Oxy addict was better than life on methadone, but at the same time you say you feel great and have begun taking your life back. Couldn't methadone have been the catalyst that pushed you to take control of your life? I don't know about you, but when I was addicted to heroin, there was NO WAY I could have ever bettered myself or gotten my haywire life under control. Good luck to you with your decrease!

lafamillia from Soutcentral Europe on May 16, 2012:

I wouldn't agree with upper comment. But, everyone has a right to have an opinion. But, I would state that I am alive thanks to Methadone. I've gone CLEAN to the TEAM of experts, that decides whether or not will someone go into the MMT or antagonistic type of treatment. I've started with 20mg , and I've stabilized on 90mg.

Victor on May 16, 2012:

Haha, this is such a joke! Methadone is absolutely trading one addiction for another. I should know, I've been on methadone for rouphly seven years-eleven more years are under my belt as an Oxycontin addict. i know how I felt the years on Oxycontin, which true, were not good, but a helluva lot better than methadone. I gained 75lbs due to the unbelievable sweet cravings that I DID NOT have on other opiates. Thankfully, I have begun taking my life back, and I give NO credit to these crap-hole clinics that push this legal drug. I'm smellin the rain now for the first time in years. If I'd listened to the counselors (that need counseling) at these clinics, I'd have continued to believe my brain was so messed up that I will never be opiate free. I'm on 20mgs/day now, going down 5mgs every 2 weeks. I feel great son, so don't tell me methadone (the way it is being used) is a good thing. It's a prison of epic proportions. You want the truth-there it is. All yall wanting to get out of the prison, come see how I'm doing things.

sol jones on May 01, 2012:

I was on Methadone for 10 years. I weaned myself down to 5mg daily and then stopped. For 55 days I could hardly walk. I was sick the entire time and saw no improvement over the days. Day 55 on the train, see a dope fiend and on my way, but only for 2 weeks. Got back on the Meth and now on 20mg. 11 years and it appears I will be on it forever 60 years old now.

The clinic doesn't tell you but Meth wipes out a persons testosterone to zero. This harmone is necessary for many things. When I had medical insurance I recived testosterone and it made a big difference in my energy level and it enabled me to have a decent sex life with my girlfriend. If one has insurance, get it checked by the lab (a lab needs a blood check before a doctor can perscribe it. Such a big difference. I know women need testosterone as well as men but I asm not sure if they need the same amount, possibly less.

Tony on April 16, 2012:

I've been on Methadone for 10 + years and have heard all the stories about the difficult withdrawal scenarios as well as good stories where people have jumped off at 2 ml with no negative consequences, it all depends on each individual. The ones who end up hanging out terribly after jumping off usually use other drugs even in tiny quantities and have lousy diets, believe me a good healthy diet will make all the difference. Non opiate medications can be used to help things along also. A great one which will stop withdrawals is Gabapentin or Pregabalin (nice stone at any time as well).

I have an excellent doctor but unfortunately an asshole of a chemist who dispenses it (he can't keep accurate records and has accused me of turning up for a dose when I had a takeaway) , you have to shop around.

Nadine Young on April 09, 2012:

Hello, their is obviously a lot of debate on methadone is it good or not good? It can be good..if used properly, and not used for a long duration of time. yet to say on e is clean on methadone is ludicrous, it's a synthetic heroin. You may feel great because the methadone is allowing you too. Those that are very pro-methadone don't seem to ever get off of it. That is why some are against it, because you are just switching one heroine in for another. Their goal is too get off of everything and when they realize it would of been easier without the methadone, they become bitter. And to the one who said the ppl who are off it are miserable? how do you know? Maybe they just know that methadone never worked for them and want others to beware, to say they are miserable is pretty harsh.Look up online what the Doctor's sheet that their supposed to give to an addict. Did you know they are supposed to put the majority of ppl up to 40mg?I'm sure all you methadone users feel great and it saved your life for the moment, get off it while you feel that way. I had gained weight when I was on it, palpitations like you wouldn't believe all kinds of problems, an overall feeling in my guts that I never experienced before, that I still am currently feeling some today after 9 months clean of ALL drugs (although I feel a lot a lot better compared to when on it). It affects everyone different. Did you know some ppl died from their dose they were prescribed because after daily use to much built up in their body? There is stuff that they do not want you to know, because methadone isn't all good! I could go on and on, but my point is there is no wonder drug, that doesn't affect you at all! For the one who said just because you had to go through a little bit of withdrawal, that was one of there points that methadone isn't that great. And if it's just a little bit of withdrawal and it's no big deal, why are you still on it? going to name calling is what someone using heroine would react like :) P.S- Methadone is a toxic drug and Oxycontin is not, anything that seeps into your body like that isn't good no matter how much worse you were, you went from an nonfunctional addict to a functioning one, you just don't see how much it is hurting you because you feel and appear to be doing so great! It will eventually catch up to you!

nohope on April 03, 2012:

This article is very missleading. No methadone is NOT like insulin for diabetics. YOU CANT WEEN ONES SELF OFF INSULIN AND BE DIABETES FREE!!!!! Now, while i understand there are a few succses stories the truth of the matter is NOT ALL METHADONE CLINICS are interested in rehabilitation. My wifes clinic for instance refuses to drop their patients less than 10 mg at a time. They are a FOR PROFIT clinic. They do not give change (not even if all you got is a 50 and you may need some gass OR FOOD) they actually punish her by taking away her take outs when she isnt able to give them huge chunks of money. Her counseler has refused to let her drop several times for "the emotional distress" she is under. She refuses to drop from 130, she has no plans to drop becuase she is scared of the withdrawl. My friends mother who also attends said clinic has been on the stuff for over 10 years. THEY DONE A REAL GOOD JOB REHABILITATING HER. The methadone effects her, she sleeps all the time. She is neglectful of our son. (will try to feed him a granola bar for lunch since she cant be bothered to make a sandwhich) Also our son has been involved in several accidents while on her watch (you know cuz im busy working or something) she isnt purpously neglectful, just lethargic alll the damn time. Im sick of paying 500 extra a month for her "treatment". She has lied to me several times about coming down when she infact has gone up. In our broker times she would PAWN MY STUFF TO GET HER DOSE!!!!!! Methadone is not the miracle drug you make it out to be. Im sick of it, im going for custody and im kicking her ass out.

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on March 25, 2012:

@tamilhp - I'm so happy for you and so glad I could help in some small way. Like you said, "SLOW but sure wins the game!"

tamilhp on March 24, 2012:

Sweet dpmidnight your a wonderful open hearted caring person. The world would be a much better place to have your kind of personality in it. I am almost completely off of methodone. like I said before I started detoxing at 135m.I'm now AT 12M. SLOW but sure wins the game. I'm still able to care for my child, live a normal life and no one would even know I have to take this. BUT if I was still an addicted i would, well , I would be dead or in jail at this point. Thank you for the kudos, It made my day. And BecauseIlive thank you for starting this, it has helped me through the rough patches going down. I know you understand. But the worse symtems I seem to have is achy legs, none of the other "pray for death" symtems. like I said I have a "sent staight from God Doc, who has encouraged and been so compassionate to what it will take to get me completely off of this forever and stay off. God willing and the river don't rise. lol. God Bless all who have traveled this journey or know someone who has. And also the wonderful people who have stood beside us thick and thin.

dpmidnight on March 23, 2012:

Thank you Tamilhp...I always believe unless you are in the situation you really can't judge. I have my moments but usually try to see things from someone elses point of view. In this case I have no first hand experience so I had to ask. Again thank you. I wish the best for all of you who are going through this. I can't even imagine.

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on March 20, 2012:

@ricepicker tony -- I'm the author of this article :) When I wrote this hub 4 years ago, I was still on 35mg of methadone. However, I now have been off it completely since October and am doing great. I did a very slow decrease down to 1mg, and then came off altogether with relatively zero discomfort. It absolutely can be done. If you actually read through all my comments, you will see that all advice I gave was given AFTER I had started, and then completed, my detox.

ricepicker tony on March 20, 2012:

I am sorry, but i believe that the person who wrote this article is either a poster boy/girl for the methadone clinics, or they own one or they are some how capitalizing off of this article, i did see that one person said that they wrote the article, and they claimed in it that you can get off almost pain free (but then they admit that they are still on 35 mgs.) please don't post this propaganda until you have actually been freed of the methadone. I was at 200 mgs i went off it for 1 month and still was in bad shape and so i went to a suboxone dr, and the methadone clinic kept calling me asking me to come back (i can only assume so that they could keep making money they didnt want to lose patients), and yes i had lost 4 teeth when i was on the drug and have half of one missing with a crown on it. i am now on the suboxone but ever since i went off of methadone i have been losing too much weight, i am 5' 6" and now weigh 121 lbs and i am 27 yrs old. the clinic didn't even test me for opiates before they dosed me. and in the 1st year i was there 10 people died from the negligence of the manager, and they are now in prison, and this clinic keeps getting more patients and when i started there they were $10 a day and now they are at $15, never go on this drug i would recommend valium for 5 days straight and you should feel okay after that. i once quite oxy that way. but now i am on suboxone which is just the lesser of 2 evils. but dont let these clinics con you into utilizing there treatment, because if the drug is so safe why wont any random dr prescribe it. it's just these clinics that wont take your insurance who will prescribe freely as long as you keep paying half of your paycheck to them. think about it before going to these places, because for most there is a long road of no turning back. even the person who wrote this isn't off yet. though they are giving advise. if you were pissing the bed would you ask some one who is still pissing the bed how to stop pissing the bed?

jinxremoving on March 18, 2012:

@ mike that sucks your experience with methadone is so bad maybe you should not have gotten on it in the first place and just kicked the drugs you were taking without it. the problem was for me everytime I went to jail and kicked I would go right back out. methadone allowed me to stabilize and get the compulsive behavior undercontrol which then allowed me too look more into myself and why I was behaving like this in the first place. I would be dead if I had chose to keep living the way I was living. and although I went onto methadone for harm reduction purposes and not wanting to kick in jail again I ended up using as a tool to change my life.

@tamil my organs are fine. most people I know who have died on methadone were drinking and on benzos or still using something.

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on March 12, 2012:

@mike - I have to disagree you, and I do speak firsthand. When I made the decision to get on methadone maintenance, I weighed 99 lbs. and was just a shell of my former self. Within three months of being on the program I had a good job, money in the bank, bought a new car, caught up on my rent and bills, and was planning a vacation. Methadone saved my SANITY. I did fear the day when I would choose to get off it, knowing I didn't want to stay on it forever. I let that fear control me for eight years before I finally felt ready. "Ready" meant coming down as slowly as I felt like doing it. It was a several year process to go from 120mgs to 1mg, but that's what I did. As I've said above, it wasn't difficult at all. The withdrawal was barely noticeable, because I did the decrease the way it's meant to be done.

I feel terrible for people who have jumped off at high doses (whether through ignorance or because they just didn't have a choice) and had to suffer through that unnecessary pain, and now will never give methadone another chance because of it.

mike on March 10, 2012:

U people who say methadone it's the best decision u ev er made in you're life are ridiculous. Ull say the opposite when ours time to get off. You don't have any cleantime. U r not clean. I found out firsthand.

Maryann on March 08, 2012:

My son is on Methadone and it saved his life! If you truely want to get off opiates and are honest with yourself and your Dr. Methadone can work well. My son tells his Dr. when they give him to high a dose and now is down to 25 mg. a day and asked the Dr. to keep it that low. I have my son back! He is the boy he was before he started using Heroin and I am greatful to the Methadone clinic for helping him stay away from street drugs. I lived every day wondering if my son would be alive when I returned from work, it was like living in hell. Now I have a relationship with my son and I see his life moving in a positive direction. Yes if you want to use the clinics to get high you probably could get there in time cause they raise your dose, which I dont understand or agree with but, if you go there with the purpose of getting clean and take control of your own recovery by telling the Dr. what is the right dose for you it can be a good thing. Good luck to all and God bless. Living clean is the best way of life!

tamilhp on March 05, 2012:

Your a wonderful person for caring dpmidnight. At least you reached out for some info. to see what might be happening. And this is also for tamii, I was on it for longer then that , My teeth are fine, I see a doc on a reg. basis my bone dens. is fine, and I am on a VERY low dose now and almost completely off. As for your friend dying of Methodone, I'm not being disrespectful, but he probably was taking more then he was suppose to , or mixing other drugs. Quit scaring people who are using the program in the correct way. When I became clean, took my CORRECT dose without using ANY OTHER DRUGS OR ALCOHOL, not even my closest friends knew , they were happy they had "me" back. To this day no one would know I am on methodone, almost off, but I wish you and others you know would have a better experience. And I still wish you the best and I am sorry you lost a friend. Again dpmidnight, your friend is not using the program correctly. I will pray for her and her children and for you sweet person for being a caring concerned person.

dpmidnight on March 04, 2012:

To tamilhp - thank you for your response. I am not in a position to help as her son and friends have attacked other neighbors who have asked them to conduct themselves in a civil manner etc...but others are trying ....I just didn't think being on this program would have her acting like she was actually on drugs especially reading yours and others stories. She has been this way for the 1 year plus that we have had her as a neighbor. I just didn't realize the details of what was going on until recently. I do think that treatments are individual for any type of treatment and that what might work for some does not work for others. It certainly is not my place to talk negatively about what I have no first hand experience with. All the best to those on this program and others battling their demons in their own way. Again thank you for the response.

tamii on March 03, 2012:

Methadone totally ruins your teeth over time also & much worse your whole body bones & organs, I should know I've been on it over 10 years & I know someone who's brother died of organ failure (organ failure due to methadone was on his death certifi). This article is misinformation, I & so many others i know are no longer on drugs & want off methadone but it's just so friggin difficult (much more difficult than heroin & withdrawl lasts longer)I could go on about the misinformation in this article but I feel pretty crap atm so later...

tamilhp on March 03, 2012:

To dpmidnight. Your neighbor is not using the program for what it is meant for. Its to help people get off of the heroin or perscription pain meds. If using it with other illigal drugs,,this person needs more help. First her children need help.

Do what ever you can to ensure the safety of those children. they are not in a good place and may end up .. well, we all know what could happen. Please do what ever you can to help the kids, then , I'm not sure how close you are to your neighbor, but i would try and let her know she's going to end up in jail or dead, either way her kids will be taken. I hope your in a position to help. You can go back and read my story, well parts of it and in a nutshell, but all it took was looking into my two yrs olds eyes and listen to him tell me "He wanted to go weee ( swing at the park) and not have to got to the doctors anymore for me to pull my head out. I went to the methodone clinic, they saved my life and my children. God Bless and best of luck with whatever you decide to do to help

VWooley, and the best of luck to you, May God be with you every step of the way and turn to him or who ever you trust to help you through the painful times.

VWoolley on March 01, 2012:

My 21 year old son is currently on the Methadone Maintenance Program here in Ontario Canada. He does NOT get high when he gets his drink! Methadone has saved his life. He tried many times to get off the Oxy's on his own, only to end up at emergency. On one occasion the trip to hospital was just in time as his heart almost stopped from the withdrawl from the opiods. Thankfully here in Ontario Canada, our government has pulled OxyContin off the market and will no longer be available.

it has been replaced with with a new formulation called OxyNeo. Unlike OxyContin the tablet is hard to crush and when added to liquid it forms a thick gel that stops oxycodone from being extracted for injection. The new drug will be funded through the province's Exceptional Access Program, meaning prescriptions will fall under stricter regulations, and will not be covered by government funded drug plan. This new drug will only be available for 1 year to those currently prescribed Oxycodone, and then it too will be removed from our pharmacy shelves. It is a step in the right direction by our government to help get these pills off the street. As a parent I do not want to see my son dependent on any medication, legal or otherwise, but the Methadone is a step to him leading and living a productive life.

dpmidnight on February 26, 2012:

I have a neighbor on methadone and we needed to speak with her and she was barely able to walk or form a sentence. She lives with her daughter (very young) and her young adult son and his friends are in her apartment (living there when they are not supposed to be. Dealing drugs...hiding them in the wall and putting the kitchen cabinets over the holes to hide them. How is the barely able to function mother living with her child not a threat to herself in this mode or her daughter...or is she taking something and not really on the methadone program.

tamilhp on February 21, 2012:

You Go Starcore

Couldn't of said it better myself.

Loved the Dr Phil comment.

Very smart comment. Thank you

Starcore on February 20, 2012:

Your an idiot if you think the clinic is bad. So what if they are making money. Would you rather they bought off the street to supply gangs and cartels. The methadone clinic also supply's jobs. Saves the state money in numerous ways. If you think the clinic is bad, you never were an addict and never saw the inner workings of the "street". Please take your "Dr.Phil advice elsewhere".

Carrie on February 18, 2012:

The Methadone clinic convinced my husband it would save his life too. Now instead of Vicodine killing him, now it will be Methadone. The chronic constipation has put him in the hospital with twisted bowel. Not a myth it rots your teeth. He had beautiful teeth, now they are chipping and decaying. It is a fact it effects the absorbtion of vitamins and minerals so he is defecient. Which has led to mono. His testosterone levels are about none, he has NO energy. The list goes on and on. His primary doctor has told him if is imminent to get off this straight from hell medication if he wants to see his children's children. Maybe Methadone has saved lives short term, but THERE IS LONG TERM EFFECTS. I have seen it and anyone who says otherwise is in denial or lying!

Ed Harris on February 17, 2012:

It saved my life in prayed for God to help me or bring me home I was spending 200 a day and I was doing whatever to get it and it started out as pain killers the doctor started giving me for my cancer. Only you know if you need something like this. Please get help if you need it. And if you truely know if you need It.

tamilhp on February 11, 2012:

Very nicely put bearface. I wish and hope the best for your sister. When I went on the program it saved my life. I was taking so many pills a day, I thank God I'm still alive. The program like you said,gave me nomallacy to my day. I was able to take care of my kids, had this whole day of feeling normal, not sick and functionable. I used the program the correct way, not just to add another drug to my life. I'm now almost off the methadone, and I thank God their were people who actually cared and realized I was one of them who was trying to get clean, and now I have a doc. helping me who is truly A God Send. I wish everyone in my position that is serious about being clean the easiest way possible with little pain could find someone like him. God Blessed him with a kind caring non judgemental heart.

Well, thanks for your input , its nice hearing that their are people who really benifit from this program, and doesn't abuse it, which is awful, because it makes the ones that really need to use it to get their lives on track, well, its just makes it so much harder for them. Best of luck. And good for you for supporting your sister.

bearface on February 10, 2012:

I used to have a vague idea of methadone treatment as simply replacing one addiction with another and institutionalising recovery and so on. A year or so ago, it emerged that my sister is/was addicted to heroin. She overdosed twice in my parents' home. She has been on a methadone programme for a number of months.

Many people who argue against methadone from a purely theoretical point of view don't understand what it is like to be an addict and to live with an addict. Not only does it destroy the person, but it destroys their families too. If heroin abusers are able to follow a structured methadone programme over a number of years that stops them from going back to heroin and enables them to regain a measure of normality in their lives, than I think that in itself is a testament to it as a treatment.

The argument that "people use methadone to get high legally" is no doubt true in some cases, just as with any drug, but that's not everyone. It seems to me that a number of people manage to lead normal fulfilling lives while taking methadone as treatment for addiction. Just because some people misuse it doesn't mean that methadone should be written off entirely.

I feel that the people who argue against methadone or exhibit prejudice towards drug addicts generally often just don't understand how complex addiction is and how much it impacts on the addicts' loved ones and, of course, on the addict his or herself.

jinxremoving from norcal baby on February 06, 2012:

@tamilhp thanks! I feel the same way about my clinic they are a non "profit" but still it seems too be a lot about money and keeping mmt patients on methadone because they have to meet a quota of patients too stay open. I am happy too hear you found a caring doctor and are at 151/2 that is awesome and hard keep up the good work! I too get the panic attacks but Dont feel to bad physicaly. I have been exercising at a gym for the first time and that has seemed too help things for me and acupuncture and massage are great there is a sliding scale place near where I live. I wish the best too anyone who is struggling with this.

tamilhp on February 06, 2012:


wow, that was perfectly said. No one knows what we go through, I have seriously been coming down off of 135m. I'm now on 15 1/2 m. I'm doing it through a doctor. Hes one of the most caring, understanding, encouraging, non judgemental doctors ever. I've been so lucky to have found him. Don't know what I would of done without him.The clinic I went to for 10 years, started out wonderful, they saved my life. I know I would of od'ed without that treatment, but they just never would let me go down, I had clean ua's the whole time, 2 week take outs, ect. Idon't know, I started to feel it was about money, but that dosen't mean I have harsh feelings, I just feel my time there ran its course, but for people who are serious about like you said taking responsibility for their own actions and getting off their addiction in a way that is least painful, then it is the place for them, If your just adding to your drugs,then well....that's your choice for it not to be used as meant for. Well, best wishes to all who have being clean and sober as their goal, and getting their lives back on track. Right now I go through some anxiety, but its so much easier then other choices in life ..jail or death.

jinxremoving from norcal baby on February 03, 2012:

people are so misinformed. There are people who abuse methadone just like there are people who abuse pot and alcohol and etc.. you can find the negative if you look hard enough anywhere in anything.. It all depends on the individual and their mentality and circumstance. most of the negative things I have read on here are written by people who A. have no experience with opiate addiction or long term methadone treatment B. are seriously misinformed ignorant and uneducated C blame all their problems on a clinic/doc or the drug not their choices or circumstance they are in because of those choices. and, D. just because you know someone who takes methadone or even a group of people who take it does not mean you know anything about what someone who is trying to get better through methadone maintenance has to deal with on a day to day basis. so don't pretend you understand our struggle. I do think methadone is over prescribed I see kids as young as 16 sometimes on it and it shouldn't be given to people who are so young unless its the only option. I don't pay anything for my methadone covered by my insurance :p and I am offended how ignorant people are about it. It took me 4 years just to find a doctor that would work with me for my health related issues because every doctor I would go to would not take me seriously, they would think I was drug seeking even when I was there for skin conditions and things that have nothing to do with getting pain pills autoimmune dissorders etc and my health got really bad because of that but I became proactive and finally found someone who kind of understands it. I never doctor shopped or any of that never needed too. but I am still treated like a junky even though I am not anymore. The stigma around methadone is sickening and those who keep the stigma going sicken me. These myths and pseudofacts that some of the people who are on here need to believe so they can feel better about themselves only aids in spreading this misinformation and stigma against people who use methadone properly. I give props to the person who put this together i think it was @becauseilive thanks and best wishes too you.


Mind over Matter

TREfromNYC on February 02, 2012:

@becauseilive. Yesssssss!!! Thank you!! Lol that post made me real mad.. ur right about her friends dose... and my clinic is $55 a week... but just about everyone there has Medicaid, including myself, so we don't pay anything ....

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on February 02, 2012:

LOL @ gigglebitch, methadone isn't free. I paid $95/week for eight years to be on a methadone program, and some clinics charge even more. I think it's funny that you're resentful of this page being "biased" because it paints methadone treatment in a positive light and shares success stories.

Also, if your friends are nodding out on methadone, then either their dose is too high and needs to be adjusted, or they're still using other opiates and/or benzos. Simple as that.

TREfromNYC on February 02, 2012:

@gigglebitch. First of all, it is not a free way to get high. I live in Staten Island,NY, and suboxone is free to with insurance just likethe clinic is.. Suboxone doesn't work for all, its mainly used as a crutch for the days u cant get money to get high.... if said person keeps increasing their dose because they lveled out THEN and only then is it a free high.. I have been on 70mg for over 6 months now, don't get increased, don't fuck with benzos, etc... as for your uppity comment saying off to college pz, - seriously? I got a degree in business management with a double minor in marketing and Spanish while I was fighting my addiction and graduated summa cum laude .... so you're not special.. u just live in an area where people don't want to get better or better their lives they just want to get high for free.. so don't knock the people here who are all true successes or the peoplewho are here because they want to truly get their life back.... just because in your small world u don't know anyone who fixed their lives doesn't mean we don't exist... same characteristics? Bull... I'm a totally different person on method than on dope/roxys... and I'm sure everyone.e else who wants a better life can say the same... I truly resent your comment... obviously..

gigglebitch on February 02, 2012:

a friend of mine just for put on methadone, and I can say first hand, that meth allows addicts to get high legally. I've seen the same characteristics of heroin/opiates in methadone. once they get stable at one level, they will just keep incresing the dosage because you do acquire a tolerance. I have never been dependent on illegal substances. I smoke pot and do cocaine very seldom. I think this whole page is biased bc you're a recovering addict. my home town has been ravaged by drug addiction, and I'm one of few ppl who have resisted. not saying gat I'm better, but I can see things from a more realsitic perspective, rather than an addict who sees meth as the right answer. try subs, yeah they're expensive, but there's a reason that meth is free. meth is just as bad as heroin if not worse bc its legally obtainable, off to college people. pz

tamilhp on February 01, 2012:

Wow jinxremoving, I'm so proud and happy to hear the healthy way you are living your life right now. I loved reading your comment, and thank you for sharing your experience. I too am getting close to being off. The anxiety is the hardest for me, and even tho pot may of helped for you, I really hate it. But my doc helps me with the anxiety, and with that, I know I'll be completely off real soon. Are you going thru a clinic or doctor? Again thank you for the confidence that it can be done and all the positive things you've said. That's exactly what people need to hear when they want off so bad and get discouraged. so many people just misuse it, and not do what they are suppose too then blame the drug instead of taking responiblity for their actions.

jinxremoving from norcal baby on January 31, 2012:

I have been on methadone since I was about 19 I had been a pill addict sine I was about 13 or 12 mostly norcos, oxy's, Diluadid or whatever else I could get that was a high strength opiate, that spiraled into IV drug use speed/heroin/cocaine and benzo abuse. When I first started the clinic about 8 years ago (I am 27 now) I was a mess ending up in jail and not giving a f*** about the people around me or my family stealing lying still using even on 140 mg thinking it would get me high etc. I was stabilized at 140 mg for years, the last two years I have managed to taper too 9 mg getting ready to be off totally. It has not been easy but without this drug I would have not learned to manage my life and build the coping skills you need to learn in order to not use. I would be dead or in jail right now if I hadn't gone to get help. There are so many rumors and bs about methadone like it goes into your bones:( false... I love that one! it does not but it might feel that way if you get a fee detox or taper wrong. then there's the its worse then heroin myth because of the half life thats the biggest load of bs.. I have seen a lot of people successfully get off methadone not too many off heroin. I have some suggestions to help with your detox if you are having problems with that. first drink a sh*t load of water make sure you are always hydrated. Second excercise every day and eat a good diet certain foods can atually help with detox. also Medical Marijuanna has helped with my taper A LOT, have not had too much physical or mental pain with that and I don't use pot everyday. I am not saying its not a hard drug to get off or to beat but its not impossible and with the right tools you can do it relatively painlessly, unless you are a chronic pain patient. To me methadone is a very mental drug and if you think its going to make you feel like shit while you taper you will feel like shit if you do yoga meditation etc.. and introduce positive things into your life you will have a more positive taper. Most people I see at the clinic who have the most problems getting off are people who have severe mental illness, people who blame all their problems on a this drug and not on themselves or their choices. people who are not using opiates anymore but still have the mentality and lifestyle of a junky, and of course people who are self medicating with non opaites or even opiates which is pointless to do on methadone. I realize everyone's situations are different getting off methadone is not easy and life is not easy ever. but if you are tapering and do it the right way and with coping skills and support you can succeed! Too say this drug is a terrible drug is misinformation its all about what you choose to do while your on it. If you just use it to get a fix for free like I did at first of course your not going to succeed and its going to be terrible because you are still stuck in that mentality. if you use your time on methadone to introduce positive things and people in your life you will start to get better. Peace and love MIND OVER MATTER is what matters

Janie on January 28, 2012:

I have been on methadone every day for29 years and I am an international equestrian instructor.

The drug is exactly the same as me being a diabetic and needing medication. I wasn't a heroin user I was given phase prone by my BP after an accident and have not had the time to get off it.

Now I started using methadone and realised that after a while you realise thatyouhave to fill 200,000 receptors compared to the normal 800 for a normal person. I am 54 and I run every day I don't ever get a cold or the flu like the rest of my household who. Are onto this drug. Other than the inconvenience. Of. Going to my chemist 3 times a week, I liveable totally normal life. So there you go ~ actually I did try and come off the methadone and went five horrible months. My body was great but my head was not. I couldn't even get a halter on my horses ~ my beautiful daughter asked metro go back on it as she didn't know this other person. That night I took 6mls 30mgs and the next morning I rang my staff and said lets get back to work and I gave my wonderful late husband a kiss and my daughter as well and went for my first ride in5 mths . Soitisn' that bad a drug jesus its all in your heads kids.

methodone on January 27, 2012:

ive been on methodone for 8 months and it safed my life i used a lot of herion a day and iv user when i was a user i couldnt take care of my kids let alone or care about my family now i work take care of my kids and live what you want to call a normal life now to what i was before i started herion

tamilhp on January 19, 2012:

Thank you so much for the encouragement. You sound very similar to my personality and time frames. Yes, I'm on tablet form, so also the smallest amt. I can go down a month is 2 1/2. I am being seen by a doc. and pill form is the only way i can recv. it through him. I know i can do this. The Anxiety is the killer when I go down, but I try and walk, watch positive shows on TV. My goal now is starting to attend church reg. again, and find a group or therapist to help with the regrets, sadness anxiety ect. My doc. encourages this too. I'm glad to have run accross your diary. Thank you for being out there. Just the thought of someone who will share and help others who has been through it, is a wonderful help. Somedays I feel I'll never make it. tamilhp

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on January 19, 2012:

@tamilhp - Question for you: do you get liquid take homes? If so, the nurse can black out the dose on the bottle, but leave the "Take on: 1/18/12" part visible so you still know what order to take them in. If you are on tablets, however, I can see how a blind detox would be tricky. Doing it blindly was a huge contributing factor in my successful detox.

I was on methadone maintenance for eight years. That is how long it took me to TRULY feel in my heart that I was ready to be done with it. I decreased incredibly slowly...2mg a month...then 1mg a month. I was at exactly 1mg when I stopped altogether. I just woke up one morning, looked at the extremely tiny amount of liquid that was in the bottle, and suddenly realized that my body couldn't possibly be needing that miniscule amount anymore. I still had a few take home bottles left, but I ended up not even using them.

The withdrawal was not hard, but neither was it the best thing I'd ever felt, lol. It was, however, TOTALLY bearable and manageable. My boyfriend at the time was very helpful in this regard. If I had let myself just sit on the couch and watch TV, my mind would have convinced my body into thinking it needed it's methadone dose -- I was just so used to the routine of taking it. Around 6pm on the day I didn't take my morning dose, I started getting restless and anxious, my mind racing a little. He all but forced me to go on a run with him, encouraging me the whole time. When we got home I took a shower and could practically feel all the toxins I'd released being washed away. He cooked a very healthy stir fry dinner full of chicken and vegetables, and I took Valaria Root (herbal supplement that eases anxiety and helps you sleep) and passed out. I felt a little anxious the next morning, so I made a huge plate of eggs, took more Valaria Root, went to yoga, and went shopping. It was important to keep my mind engaged. By the third day -- no anxiety!

Physical withdrawal symptoms were NON-EXISTENT. I was pretty sleepy for about a week, but that was all. I have now been off methadone for more than three months, and I feel fantastic. It really, really, really can be done :)

tamilhp on January 17, 2012:

Thank you sooo much becauseilive. I really want to be off of the methadone. I would love to not have to go through the withdrawels.My doctor is wonderful and supportive. He dosen't push, but does encourage that I can make it through the rough patches. I don't have an end date, I did when I first started, well, that's came and went, but I have forgave myself for not being as strong as I thought I could be. I hate being sick. I feel worthless and like I dump haveing to to take care of everything on my husband. He is supportive, but I know he too wishes I was through this. I can't do blind detox, because I get my script each month and know what I have to take. I did so well with hardly any withdrawel feelings at all until I hit 30 mg. Then I felt every mg I went down. My body just seems to hang on to evry mg. I have so many questions, but I'll start with 2 more. When you were off completely was the withdrawel hard? How long until you really felt like your strong self again?Thank you again. tamilhp

J. M. O. on January 16, 2012:

I have, unfortunately, had to come off of heroin 3 different times. I really want to stop; and I have for small periods of time. The fact is: opiates make me feel like myself, but the best "myself" that I can be. I have a drug-free family, so the constant lying of where I was and what I spent my clothes and bus fare money on, becomes an ongoing lie. I am tired of it. I am doing things to make my life better; I am getting my class A CDL and I have 3 days clean from Heroin. Of course, I am getting a little substitute called methadone (the cheapest drug detox I can find). But, I make myself have a seven day program. One ten mg in the morning (first day of H) following one half(5 mg. at night) Second day (half in the morning and half at night{before bed). It isnt enough to get me high, but it is enough to make myself shower, eat, bathe, etc. Third day is half in the morning and 1/4 for night. Forth day is 1/4 for Morning and the same at night. By this time the withdrawels are almost gone. By the fifth day, wait as long as you can possibly stand the Withdrawels(They are not near as bad by now) and take 1/4 (I try to take it around 2 or 3 pm. That night, however, you WILL sleep, but probably not 8-12 hours (especially depending on how long you have used Heroin) But you should get at least six hours of sleep, off and on. I always kept 1/4 by my bedside just in case of the DT's.-- Try to chew a 1/2 of the 1/4, 10 mg methadone pill. That would be 1/8 of a 10 mg methadone. For the next two days (day 6 and day 7) I always would take one quarter of a 10 mg methadone pill per day. That is 2.5 mg. You have to really want to stop in order for this to work. If you relapse on Heroin inbetween these 7 days, you will have done this for nothing. If you try the 7 day schedule again, by the time your done, you will most likely be having withdrawels from the methadone. If you succeed, you will still not feel completely normal. Force yourself to at least complete personal hygiene and do at least one hour chore a day while detoxing. You won't feel like crap, but you will not exactly feel like you could accomplish anything you wanted, when you were high. You have to make a choice. If you have been on heroin for 6months or more, it will take much longer for you to feel "normal". The more you push yourself to do chores, pay bills, get a new hobby, find a higher power, shower, etc. you will feel more positive and more accomplished when your day is over. It makes it to where you dont feel as sad, depressed, and it makes it to where you know (with time) that you will be a better person. You wont have to rely on "feeling" a certain way, in order to accomplish things in your life. There will be days when you have to do numerous things (and the worst part is), you will feel like dog poop and still have to do it. That is just part of life. I am on my third day of my personal methadone program. Yesterday and Today I had to attend 10 hours of class each day. I felt decent, but I am used to feeling THE BEST I CAN FEEL. When i feel the best I can feel, I am instoppable! But what happens when I cant get no more? Or I don't have anymore money? I would try to hustle (NEVER STEAL.... EEVVEERR!!!) but i would find legitimate ways to get money. I would be a lot better off right now if I would have used that money for GOOD. I pray that however reads this will find strength to try my plan. If you are a heavy user, then after the seventh day, use Immodium AD (or even if you are getting the hershey squirts before the seventh day) Even if you arenot getting the diahrreah, the active ingredient in Immodium or Generic Immodium is Loperamide Hydrochloride- it is kind of an opiate. It WILL NOT get you high because it can NOT pass the BLOOD BRAIN BARRIER, but it will tell your brain that you have opiates in it (and even though you wont get high... NO MATTER HOW MUCH YOU SNORT, CHEW, ETC. !!! It will help your body with withdrawels. Take the recomended dose when needed for 2-3 days at the most. If that is all you are taking, then you should not have WD.s afterward. Nobody needs to be on Methadone for years at a time; even if a doctor tells you to. If you have trouble sleeping for the next few months, then go to a local mental health facility- They are usually free. If you get Seroquil or Trazadone you will have no problem sleeping and you will feel refreshed in the morning. The best part is both of those pills are NON NARCOTIC!!!

Jaclyn Popola (author) from Florida on January 09, 2012:

@tamilhp - You are doing the right thing by taking it slow. There is NOTHING wrong with pausing for a while at 17 1/2 mg. You have to listen to your body when it tells you "slow down" -- there is no rush. Some people think, for example, "Oh, I have to be off in exactly six months from now". They get an arbitrary number stuck in their head and push themselves to be off it by then. I'm not necessarily dissing this method, I'm sure it works for some, but for me personally I never had an end-date in mind. I never got upset if I felt I had to pause my decrease (or even go up 1 or 2 mg during times of stress), I just went with the flow.

You have already done amazingly well! Have you considered doing a blind decrease? That helped me tremendously. A HUGE part of addiction is psychological, so if you know when exactly your dose drops and what amount you're at, you're going to automatically assume that that decrease will trigger withdrawal symptoms. Does it trigger withdrawal because you're truly feeling withdrawal, or because your mind has convinced you that you're going to feel it, and therefore you do? It's true that "what you think about, you bring about." Good luck, keep me posted!

tamilhp on January 09, 2012:

I am tapering off and on 17 1/2 m. I still have anxiety but its so much better then the drug life I lived before. I was at a clinic for 10 yrs. And they just pushing my dose higher and higher. I finally found a doctor who is helping me off and i've went from 135 m to what i said above. it can be done. I wanted off so bad , i pushed myself a little to quick and now i think i need to stay where i am at for a little longer. I'm just looking for positive feedback, my anxiety couldn't take any neg. feedback right now. I'm looking for encouragement and positive people like becauseilive and sherrie. Thank you so much. My regrets of even being in this position are a weight tied to my leg. God Bless

sherrie on January 07, 2012:

I am so happy you posted that story. I too know that the day I taper off will be a horrible day but it can't be ANY worse than discusting withdrawals I went through SO many times when i tried to cold turkey off my huge amounts of If YOU can survive it and share your story I will be ready for what ever long as I am FREE of ALL drugs even Methadone for helping me I still want to wake up day after day for the rest of my life and NOT have to stand in a line worry about the money...just BE FREE and methadone has given me the tools to find my way thru this life without being doped up.,

I'm on 20mg and in the taper stage now...YeS It is scary but I'm willing to do the time.

Thank you again for sharing And CONGRADULATIONS on 8 1/2 years of being DRUG FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

God bless you your boys and YOU LIFE!!