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How should I take methadone?

Howard J. Shaffer, PhD
Addiction Medicine
Methadone (the best-known and most frequently used medication for treating opioid dependence) is taken as a pill, a tablet dissolved in juice, a liquid, or a concentrated liquid solution that must first be diluted. It is also used to treat chronic pain. It must be taken at a substance abuse clinic.
If you are taking methadone because you are addicted to narcotics, you should only take it as part of a government-approved treatment program, which includes counseling and monitoring of your use. Methadone is available as a tablet to swallow, a tablet to dissolve, a concentrated liquid to drink, and an injection. This drug can be addictive. Your doctor may start you at a low dose and gradually increase dosage. If using dissolvable tablets, dissolve one tablet in water or citrus juice, and drink the entire glass. If using a concentrated solution, mix your dose in at least 1 ounce of water, citrus juice, or other juice. (Do not use grapefruit juice.) For pain relief, methadone is usually taken every 4 to 12 hours. For severe pain, it may be administered by injection.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.