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Vivitrol - How It Works

Home » Our Approach » Medication-Assisted Treatment » Vivitrol: How It Works

Vivitrol, known generically as naltrexone, is a prescription medication utilized to help individuals who are struggling with addiction to alcohol or opioids. It is an extended-release injectable suspension that is typically administered once a month by a healthcare professional. Vivitrol acts as a supportive measure in addiction recovery, best utilized alongside counseling and participation in behavioral programs that foster a supportive community and encourage life changes.

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How Does Vivitrol Work?

Vivitrol works by binding to the opioid receptors in the brain and blocking the effects of opioids and alcohol. This mechanism helps in reducing cravings and the feeling of reward associated with consuming these substances. As an opioid antagonist, naltrexone blocks the euphoric and sedative effects of opioids, making it easier for individuals to abstain from use.

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How Long Does It Take for Vivitrol to Work?

Vivitrol begins to work shortly after it is administered, often within 30 minutes to 2 hours after the injection. However, its effectiveness in reducing cravings and blocking the effects of opioids or alcohol becomes more apparent over time, typically within one to two days following administration. Consistent monthly injections are crucial to maintaining its therapeutic effects.

What Are The Side Effects of Vivitrol?

Like any medication, Vivitrol may cause side effects. Common side effects include:

More severe side effects may occur, including liver damage, depression, or allergic pneumonia. It’s imperative to consult with a healthcare provider to understand the risks and benefits associated with Vivitrol.

How Long Do Vivitrol Side Effects Last?

The duration of side effects varies among individuals. While some clients may experience mild symptoms for a few days, others may endure them for a longer period. Side effects like injection site reactions usually resolve relatively quickly. Persistent or severe side effects should prompt immediate medical attention.

What If I Drink Alcohol on Vivitrol?

Drinking alcohol while on Vivitrol won’t lead to severe physical reactions, but the drug will diminish the pleasurable sensations usually associated with drinking. The medication is meant to act as a deterrent, encouraging individuals to maintain their sobriety.

What If I Use Opioids While on Vivitrol?

Vivitrol blocks the effects of opioids, making it difficult to achieve the desired high. However, attempting to override this blockage by taking large amounts of opioids can lead to severe consequences, including overdose and death. It is essential never to attempt opioid use while on Vivitrol treatment.

How Effective is Vivitrol?

When used as part of our Atlanta addiction treatment program, Vivitrol can significantly aid in maintaining sobriety. Studies have shown that individuals receiving Vivitrol, in conjunction with therapy and support, are more likely to stay in treatment and refrain from using illicit substances.

Who Can Prescribe Vivitrol?

Vivitrol must be prescribed by a healthcare provider who is qualified and trained in treating alcohol and opioid dependence. Usually, addiction specialists, psychiatrists, or primary care physicians may prescribe Vivitrol.

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If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction in Atlanta and considering Vivitrol as part of Medication-Assisted Treatment, Peachtree Recovery Solutions is equipped to support your journey. Our facility offers a combination of medical and therapeutic approaches to addiction treatment, providing a conducive environment for recovery. Verify your insurance or 

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