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Medication for Alcohol Addiction

a doctor explains to a patient about medication for alcohol addiction

Year in and year out, alcohol addiction, also known as alcoholism, is one of America’s most common substance problems. Fortunately, if you’re affected by this condition, recovery support is available to you in multiple forms. Several of the options for treating alcohol addiction are medication-based.

That includes an option known by the brand name Vivitrol. When used appropriately, a Vivitrol treatment program can play a significant part in helping you stay alcohol-free. Contact our team at Evoke Waltham, and we can help you better understand Vivitrol and available alcohol addiction treatment options. We’re available to answer any of your questions or concerns. Call us at 866.276.1920.

Medication for Alcohol Addiction

Medication can be used to support you throughout your treatment for alcohol addiction. The FDA explicitly approves three medications for this purpose. Their generic names are:

  • Acamprosate
  • Disulfiram
  • Naltrexone

Doctors also sometimes make use of options not explicitly intended to treat alcoholism. The most common example here is a seizure medication called topiramate. In addition, doctors may prescribe ondansetron, a drug that helps prevent nausea and vomiting.

Acamprosate’s primary purpose is to ease some of the longer-term effects of alcohol withdrawal. Disulfiram helps you stay sober by making you feel ill if you take a drink. Naltrexone works by blocking the nerve sites that allow alcohol to reach your brain. In this way, it makes the act of drinking less pleasurable. It also helps reduce your alcohol cravings. Together, these actions decrease the odds that you will relapse after achieving initial sobriety.

What Is Vivitrol Therapy for Alcohol Addiction?

Vivitrol is a medication that contains naltrexone as its active ingredient. Like all forms of naltrexone, it helps you stay alcohol-free once you reach a sober state. However, when injected into a muscle, a single dose of Vivitrol stays in your system for about a month. This extended length of effectiveness has benefits that include:

  • A more convenient schedule for treatment
  • Higher odds that you will comply with your treatment plan
  • An easier time steering clear of alcohol use in everyday situations

The medication is typically used as part of an outpatient treatment plan for alcoholism. You must be alcohol-free to receive Vivitrol therapy for alcohol addiction. In addition, you must have a demonstrated ability to stay sober as an outpatient.

The Role of Medication for Alcohol Addiction in Your Larger Recovery Plan

What role does medication for alcohol addiction play in your overall recovery? In some cases, it may serve as the only form of treatment. However, it’s also common for addiction specialists to combine medication with psychotherapy. Several kinds of therapy are known to help people addicted to alcohol. One frequent choice is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). You may also benefit from something called motivational interviewing. For many people, family therapy is crucial to an effective recovery. Other options may also be available to you.

Is Vivitrol Therapy Right for You?

How can you tell if Vivitrol therapy is right for you? Talk to your treatment team. These experts can assess your condition. They can also help determine if outpatient care is suitable for you. In addition, your team can determine if Vivitrol is a good fit for your outpatient plan.

Vivitrol therapy can be an important part of your treatment plan. But it’s not suitable for everyone. Some things to consider include:

  • Your overall health
  • Your mental health
  • Your alcohol or drug use history
  • Your willingness to commit to treatment

Outpatient care may not be appropriate for everyone. Talk to your treatment team if you’re unsure if it’s right for you. A treatment team can help you make the best decision for your care.

Learn More About Medication for Alcohol Addiction at Evoke Waltham

Have questions about the medications used to treat alcoholism? The professionals at Evoke Waltham are ready to assist you. With our help, you can get a firm grasp on your potential medication choices.

Evoke Waltham relies on a range of methods to support alcoholism recovery. Your options include a dedicated Vivitrol therapy program. They also include several of the top therapies for alcohol addiction. For more information on our patient-first approach to treatment, call us today at 866.276.1920.