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Myth Buster: MAT Meds Are a Crutch

By July 26, 2021May 11th, 2022No Comments

This myth is misleading. Typically, people use the term crutch for addiction treatment in a pejorativeway as if the person using MAT is cheating in recovery. A crutch is seen as something that prevents a person from getting better on their own. Research shows that addictions have a biological component that can be effectively addressed with medications. MAT medications reduce cravings and help someone achieve and retain sobriety. When utilized with the supervision of a trained addiction medicine clinician, MAT medications breaks the addictive cycle where drug use motivates more drug use. In this previous post, we offer more in-depth discussion about MAT medication.

To help you understand, allow us to dissect the crutch concept further.

Viewed in a different light, crutches when used properly, do not interfere with healing. Rather, they empower someone to continue living their life while healing. If someone discontinues the use of their crutches too soon, they may lose their balance, fall  and risk further injury. In the same way, medications in addiction treatment also help balance the person so that they can avoid slips and falls in their recovery. From this perspective, MAT does act like a crutch, but a  crutch used to assist in the recovery process.

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