When you’re suffering from a substance use disorder, making the decision to get help is often difficult enough. Then you have to decide how to get help and try to understand the options for treatment. The ravaging effects of substances on the brain make that process even more difficult. Thankfully, a tool has recently been developed to help those who are trying to make treatment decisions.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, SAMHSA, recently released an online, interactive tool for people with, or seeking recovery from, opioid use disorder. The Decisions in Recovery web-based tool and its accompanying handbook are helpful resources for those who are trying to determine if treatment can help them, decide on what type of treatment, and how to stick to their recovery plan. This tool is also helpful for loved ones and care providers who are supporting those suffering from opioid use disorder.
The interactive, decision-making support tool includes a number of features:
- Easy-to-understand information about three primary medications used for medication-assisted treatment (MAT) of opioid use disorder (methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone) along with their outcomes, risks, and benefits.
- Tools to help individuals in recovery identify and consider personal goals and preferences for their unique situations.
- Brief videos of recovery stories that provide a range of views and experiences from individuals in recovery and from service providers.
- Downloadable worksheets to assist anyone on their recovery journey.
The tool has been designed to help people find information about the role of medications in treating opioid use disorder, but it doesn’t have all the answers. You should always speak to an addiction counselor to discuss the best treatment options for you or a loved one.