Professional Treatment For Fentanyl Addiction

Using fentanyl is dangerous and potentially life-threatening. Receiving professional treatment for fentanyl addiction can help someone regain control over their life and safely begin their recovery journey.

If you or someone you know is struggling with fentanyl use, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the most common treatment options.

Once someone is ready to get help for fentanyl addiction, several decisions must be made rather quickly. Here are some of the things to consider for fentanyl treatment.

  • What does the treatment plan look like?
  • Which level of care is most appropriate?
  • Is medication-assisted treatment necessary or wanted?

Once you’ve answered these questions, you can start to formulate your treatment plan.

Typical Treatment Plan

Once someone is willing to seek help, the first step is to evaluate their level of physical dependence, medical concerns, mental health, and social factors that can influence recovery. This evaluation can be conducted by professional staff at any level of care, who will make recommendations about the most appropriate treatment programs and medical interventions.

For people with fentanyl addiction, particular attention will be given to potential withdrawal symptoms that could lead to relapse if they aren’t well monitored and treated.

The next stage of treatment focuses on stabilization and motivation for recovery, which may include education and counseling, often with medication for withdrawal and mental health. Once someone has sustained sobriety for at least a week, they will be able to be more engaged with counseling and treatment, and so the bulk of ongoing addiction treatment focuses on building insight and skills. Addiction counseling helps people understand their addiction, identify their personal and environmental risk factors, build social support for recovery, and learn new skills to support a recovery lifestyle. This stage of treatment can last weeks to months, depending on the level of care.

As someone becomes more comfortable with their recovery skills, they will likely transition to less frequent outpatient therapy sessions and rely more on social support and mutual support groups.

Levels Of Care

A wide range of treatments are available for fentanyl addiction. Selecting the most appropriate level of care can be complex, and best practices recommend a stepped care model for addiction treatment that involves starting someone in the least restrictive level of care that can realistically meet their unique needs and circumstances.

Not everyone needs to stay overnight in a treatment program, and not everyone would succeed in their recovery goals if they returned to an unsafe living situation between treatment sessions. To determine the best level of care, consider the person’s medical needs, mental health, living situation, work and family responsibilities, motivation for recovery, and preferences.

Featured Treatment Centers Offering Treatment for Fentanyl Addiction

Residential Programs

Residential treatment programs are the most well-known, and they’re usually what people call “rehab.” These programs range from 30-90 days, and clients stay overnight and receive treatment on-site throughout their stay.

Some residential programs restrict access to non-treatment activities, like cell phone access and off-site excursions without supervision. Other programs have fewer restrictions on these activities, and some even provide scheduled time for people to telework.

Residential programs are not locked units, meaning people can discharge themselves at any time unless they have a legal guardian that wishes otherwise, such as a teenager or adult with a cognitive disability.

Inpatient Programs

People often use the terms residential and inpatient interchangeably, but there are some differences between these levels of care. Inpatient treatment programs are typically associated with a hospital or medical center, and patients have less privacy and freedom than in residential programs.

Inpatient programs are shorter, typically 1-3 weeks, and they are primarily for people who need 24/7 medical supervision due to the severity of their medical or mental health problems. Inpatient psychiatric and detox programs are often housed in the same units as the medical staff.

Partial Hospitalization And Intensive Outpatient Programs

For people who do not wish or need to stay overnight at a treatment program, the most intense levels of care are partial hospitalization programs (PHP) and intensive outpatient programs (IOP). PHPs provide up to 20 hours a week of treatment services within the same program, and these are more likely to be short-term programs for people who have just completed psychiatric stabilization or need additional time with professional staff throughout the week.

IOPs typically provide treatment three days a week for a few hours each day, providing at least 12 hours per week. In recent years, IOPs have become more popular as healthcare costs have risen since they are much less expensive than residential or inpatient programs. IOPs often have morning, afternoon, and evening tracks to meet the needs of people with differing schedules, and they are typically 4 to 8 weeks long.

Many IOP and PHPs have specialty tracks for groups like teenagers or women, and some are focused on a particular type of addiction like alcohol or opioids (including fentanyl). PHP and IOPs are more affordable than residential programs, allowing people to practice their recovery skills at home between sessions. When selecting a treatment program, it’s important to consider the financial burden and the patient’s needs. For many people, IOP is sufficient for early recovery.

Residential, inpatient, PHP, and IOP programs typically include group therapy, individual therapy, case management, and psychiatric medication management. Most addiction programs utilize saliva or urine drug testing to encourage abstinence during treatment.

Outpatient Programs

The least restrictive form of Fentanyl treatment is outpatient therapy/counseling, where the person meets with a counselor less than five hours per week. Most people transition to outpatient treatment after completing residential or IOP programs. However, some people choose to start with outpatient care and only seek more intensive services if they are not making sufficient progress toward their recovery goals.

Medication-Assisted Treatment

An increasingly important part of fentanyl treatment is medication-assisted treatment (MAT). Research and clinical evidence indicate that the best outcomes for opioid treatment include both MAT and psychosocial therapy/counseling. There are three FDA-approved medications for opioid use disorders.

These medications can improve treatment success and ease withdrawal symptoms.

Beyond these three medications, many other medications can be prescribed off-label for common symptoms of fentanyl withdrawal and early recovery. People interested in MAT should identify treatment programs that specifically offer MAT or find an outpatient addiction psychiatrist to explore the options.

Finding Treatment Programs For Fentanyl Addiction

If you need to use health insurance, you can by using our rehab directory for a list of approved in-network programs. To find help for yourself or a loved one, contact a treatment provider today to learn more about Fentanyl addiction treatment options.