Medication Assisted Treatment in Port St. Lucie, FL

What Is Medication-Assisted Treatment?

Medication-assisted treatment, also known as MAT, is a treatment that uses medication to treat addiction. Typically employed to treat opioid use disorders and alcohol dependence, MAT is often combined with counseling for the best results.

When completing addiction treatment, withdrawal symptoms arise. While often severe and even life-threatening, MAT significantly reduces the overall impact they have and improves the outcome of detox programs. Furthermore, MAT gives people the tools and abilities required to build a solid foundation for the best chances of recovery.

Though commonly used to treat opioid use disorders (OUD), MAT can also treat alcohol use disorders (AUD). For this reason, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) regard MAT to be a highly effective form of addiction treatment.

Compassionate Addiction Treatment

Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is an evidence-based treatment program that produces highly effective results. MAT contributes to excellent recovery rates when used to treat opioid dependence and alcohol use disorder (AUD) in conjunction with counseling and behavioral therapies.

NP Addiction Clinic in Port Saint Lucie, FL, integrates comprehensive MAT in fully bespoke programs to combat addiction and substance abuse.

Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Dependence

Opioid treatment programs will often administer medication to increase the chances of a successful recovery. The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved several types of medications to treat opioid use disorder (OUD). These are:

  • Buprenorphine – A synthetic opioid, buprenorphine is used to replace more potent drugs and shorten withdrawal symptoms. Buprhenorphine occupies opioid receptors in the brain without creating the euphoric effects of other opioids. It is sometimes combined with naloxone to prevent dependence and opioid misuse.
  • Suboxone – Suboxone is a brand name for a sublingual film which combines buprenorphine and naloxone together. It is a thin orange film that is dissolved under the tongue for rapid absorption. 
  • Methadone – A synthetic opioid often used as a long-term substitute for opioids of abuse, methadone is a maintenance medication. Practitioners decrease the dosage over time, which helps to reduce the symptoms of withdrawal. 
  • Naltrexone – Working to prevent opioid effects in the brain, naltrexone weakens the desire to use opioid substances. Unlike other medicines, it can’t be used in conjunction with other treatments.
  • Naloxone – This is a medication which acts quickly to block opioid receptors in the brain to mitigate the effects of opioids substances. It is sometimes combined with buprenorphine to prevent abuse. Naloxone by itself is the active ingredient in NARCAN, a medicine used to rapidly reverse the effects of opioid overdose. 

What You Should Know About MAT for Opioid Addiction

When receiving MAT for OUD, there is no maximum amount of time that clients can receive medication. Some people may receive medication for a few months, and others may use them for much longer. Many recovery programs aim to phase these medications out within a year, but this can depend on the individual.

As detoxing from opioids can take weeks, using medication throughout can alleviate severe withdrawal symptoms and increase the chances of a successful recovery.

The effectiveness of these treatments differs from person to person, and several types of medication may need to be tried to find the right type. At NP Addiction Clinic, our bespoke recovery programs mean that you’ll receive the treatment that’s right for you, with medication that works effectively. No two people are the same, which is why we tailor our plans and medications to each individual.

NP Addiction Clinic is fully licensed by SAMHSA to provide opioid detox. We have a proven track record of successful detox and recovery.

Medication-Assisted Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder

It is incredibly dangerous to quit alcohol without the use of medication. As a result, treatment centers will often use one of the following medications to assist detox:

  • Benzodiazepines – Prescribed within the detox phase of treatment, benzodiazepines can reduce and prevent withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, chills, and even seizures.
  • Acamprosate – Sold under the brand name Campral, acamprosate helps to reduce alcohol cravings. It additionally minimizes some withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety and insomnia.
  • Naltrexone – This treatment blocks the rush of endorphins that are released when alcohol is consumed. Administered after the detox stage, naltrexone is available as a tablet, implant, or injection.

As treatment for AUD depends on what is suitable for the individual, different medications may be tested before being prescribed. Detoxing from alcohol can take more than a week, with some symptoms persisting for a prolonged period. Using MAT alongside other addiction treatments offers a greater chance of a successful recovery.

There is a misconception that MAT doesn’t help with recovery. Instead, many believe that it replaces one drug for another. However, the medications used do not replicate the euphoric effects of being on opioids or drinking alcohol. Instead, they reduce cravings, aid brain and body function after addiction, and help clients focus on recovering mentally.

Peer reviewed clinical research has shown that MAT is a safe and effective method for addiction treatment, particularly for Opiate Use Disorder. MAT measurably improves outcomes and increases a person’s chances for staying sober successfully long-term. 

Symptoms of Addiction

The symptoms of addiction depend on the substance that a person is using. 

However, they generally include:

  • Losing interest in hobbies
  • Withdrawing from family and friends
  • Missing school or work regularly
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Changes in mood, including mood swings and irritability
  • Financial and legal issues

It may be hard to confront signs of substance abuse in yourself or a loved one, but professional help is always available. At NP Addiction Clinic, our thorough assessment process can identify the best treatment option available and provide a completely bespoke treatment plan for each person.

When completing MAT for opioid or alcohol abuse disorders, withdrawal symptoms may be encountered. 

These can include:

  • Muscle aches
  • Anxiety
  • Tremors
  • Restlessness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Excessive sweating
  • High body temperature
  • Diarrhea and cramps

The idea of receiving treatment for prescription opioids or alcohol abuse can seem overwhelming. However, using medications to treat addiction and withdrawal can lessen these symptoms considerably, improve rates, and reduce the risk of relapse.

Medication-Assisted Recovery

This term is often used interchangeably with medication-assisted treatment, but there are a couple of subtle differences between MAT and medication-assisted recovery (MAR).

In short, MAT makes MAR possible. Treatment comes before recovery, but both use medication. A MAT program might also offer MAR as part of the process, as using medication to treat OUD or alcohol abuse during recovery can help clients maintain sobriety.

MAT helps people to sustain recovery with the use of medication. Medication may be decreased over time or used over a prolonged period to help sustain a drug-free life.

MAT is an evidence-based treatment with many proven benefits. 

SAMHSA finds that MAT:

  • Improves rates of survival
  • Enhances treatment retention
  • Helps people to maintain and gain employment after treatment
  • Improves the outcome of birth among women who use substances while pregnant
  • Decreases criminal activities, such as buying illegal opiates.

When administered alongside counseling and behavioral therapies, MAT is highly effective and contributes to sustained recovery. NP Addiction Clinic tailors each program to the individual, providing a safe and supportive environment so everyone can heal and recover at their own pace.

Get The Treatment You Deserve

Recovery doesn’t just end with detox and medication. All our MAT programs provide comprehensive aftercare and support for our clients. We ensure each person has access to counseling, behavioral therapies, and medication to get to the root cause of addiction. Our alumni services allow clients to access support even after leaving our treatment programs.


Act now to receive bespoke healthcare to treat opioid use disorders and alcohol abuse at NP Addiction Clinic. Our thorough assessment process identifies each individual’s unique needs, and our MAT program includes around-the-clock care and support from staff. To find out more, call or email us today.

Why Choose NP Addiction Clinic?

Why our St. Lucie County rehab and mental health center is right for you and your loved ones.

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24-Hour Support

We are dedicated to helping people heal, recover and live better lives, 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. Count on us to be there when you need us most. 

On-Site Detox

Unlike most facilities, we provide a complete, in-house safe and comfortable medical detox.We care for you from start to finish.

Mental Health Treatment Pros

We are experts in treating depression, anxiety, PTSD, addiction and much more. Our mental health expertise is above and beyond the norm.

Aftercare and Alumni Support

Our aftercare, alumni support and MAT programs are second to none. We’re invested in your recovery and wellness for the long haul. 

Recovery is Within Reach

At NP Addiction Clinic, successful recovery is only a phone call away. We’re always open, and we accept most insurance plans that can cover your cost of treatment. A life in recovery is within reach and we can help you achieve it.

Contact us today:

24/7 Helpline: (888) 574-3506

Samantha Kelly​

Director of National Business Development & Admissions Coordinator

I am a dedicated and passionate professional with extensive experience in business development Admissions and marketing. I have an incredible passion for showing others that there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel if someone truly wants it.
Being in recovery myself I understand the struggles of addiction and alcoholism. I Started this Career path in 2009. With multiple years of experience, I bring a multi-faceted approach and am always seeking new ways to make a difference in the lives of those I work with.

Kim L. Buckner


As a Substance Abuse Motivational Speaker, Pastor, Peer Advocate, and Facilitator. Kim helps clients avoid relapse by understanding their triggers. Those people, places and things that can cause craving, as well as internal triggers like feelings, thoughts, or emotions. Kim also clients with identifying and building healthy relationships now that they’re clean and sober.

Kim’s background includes extensive experience as a motivational speaker and work in faith-based organizations helping youth and adults alike. He says he is motivated by giving back to the community, understanding, and not judging who she comes into contact with. Kim’s favorite quote is by Dr. Raymond Johnson: “The respect given to others rebounds to the giver to deny the scared in the Other is to deny it in oneself.”

Caty Burns


Caty graduated from Indiana University Bloomington in 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and minors in Counseling and History. Throughout her undergrad, she worked at the local CASA program, supporting volunteers advocating for children who had experienced abuse and neglect. Caty worked for seven years at a community mental health center (CMHC), partnering with children, adults, and families.

During those seven years, she taught life and coping skills as well as behavior management, provided case management and peer recovery services, and facilitated treatment teams that included the client, family, providers, and community members. I have also worked at an IOP providing group therapy services. She is currently working towards my Master of Social Work.

In her free time, Caty enjoys reading, especially historical fiction, spending time outdoors and having movie nights with her family. Disney World is her happy place, and she dreams of living among the elephants.

Madison Knowles

Mental Health Therapist

My name is Madison Knowles, I am a Mental health therapist at NPAC. I am a single-mother of two and I have a daughter who is globally delayed and has been diagnosed with autism. I have been in this industry since I was 16 years old, as I was fascinated with human behavior. I obtained my masters in applied behavioral analysis and started off working with people with disabilities. I then found my love for counseling when I worked with juveniles who had mental health and substance use issues. I then decided to go back for my mental health therapy license after that and working in a forensic treatment center. I went on to obtain my therapy credentials and since 2017, I have also been working on my PhD in forensic psychology in which I am currently working on my dissertation. I am inspired by change and how resilient people can be. My favorite inspirational quote is “Some will, Some won’t, So what, NEXT!!!” This quote has inspired me to try, try, and try again no matter how hard life gets, someone will give you a chance eventually. As a therapist at NPAC, I have been given the opportunity to work with diverse populations such as in substance use and mental health and I am known for my work with people on the schizophrenic spectrum as well as with other clients with other severe conditions including personality disorders.

Megan Carmona, LMHC

Lead Therapist

Our Lead Therapist, Megan, is a bilingual Licensed Mental Health Counselor who specializes in working with adults who struggle with addiction, anxiety, depression, and trauma. As Lead Therapist, she provides individual, family, and group therapy sessions to our clients.  Megan says “I am very passionate about therapy, especially about supporting my clients in exploring their strengths and identity. My goal is to provide individuals with the tools that can help them achieve independence in coping with their challenges and facilitating personal development.” In her free time, Megan enjoys watching docu-series and playing video games with her family. Her dream is to own acres of land so she can care for vulnerable animals, especially old dogs, cats, and horses. 

Kristen Bensley

Primary Clinician

As Primary Clinician, Kristen works with all aspects of our clinical team, from case management to primary therapy.  She has broad experience working in the mental health field. Prior to joining our team at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic, Kristen was part of the team awarded the Evernorth Behavioral Health Center of Excellence Designation by Cigna. She says her motivation is to help people rediscover who they are and become excited about the future and all the possibilities life offers. Kristen’s favorite quote is: “You can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.”

Ronn Daigle, MSW

Therapist, Utilization Review Clinician

Ronn Daigle services as a Therapist and Utilization Review Clinician at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic. He has been working in the field of substance use disorder treatment since 2011, with experience in all facility-based levels of care. Ronn earned, both an Associate of Arts in Psychology (2013) and Bachelor of Science in Human Services, with an Addiction Studies Concentration (2015) from Indian River State College. 

Ronn additionally earned a Master of Social Work degree in 2021 and is a current Registered Clinical Social Work Intern working toward licensure (LCSW). He describes himself as detail oriented, and solution focused.

Ronn says: “There is nothing more fulfilling than working with someone who doesn’t believe in himself or herself, and being there in the moment with them when the belief begins. We work with individuals who come to us at a point and time in their respective lives where they do not believe that change for others is possible; let alone for themselves…throughout the process they eventually come to a point where they realize that change is not only possible, but achievable.”

Erika Melecio, LMHC, MCAP, CEI

Assistant Clinical Director

Erika Melecio, LMHC, MCAP, CEI is the Assistant Clinical Director at Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic who specializes in the treatment of LGBTQ, addiction, as well as mental health disorders ranging from depression and anxiety, to Bipolar Disorder, trauma, personality disorders, psychotic disorders, and eating disorders. Erika utilizes a number of modalities including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, and Mindfulness amongst others. Erika has been in practice for close to a decade and has earned her license in Mental Health Counseling, as well as being a Master’s Certified Addiction Professional. Erika has worked with many individuals including couples counseling and family therapy, and is fluent in Spanish.
Throughout my years of practice, one of the things I enjoy helping people find is inner peace. Whether you are in the deepest parts of depression, overrun by your anxiety, controlled by your addiction, or there are certain issues in your life that are negatively impacting your ability to function, and have a happy, healthy life, maybe now is the time to talk about it. I am a big believer in empowerment, working hard in therapy, and utilizing different techniques to help you regain that inner peace that may have been lost along the way. I want to work with you as a team because with two people, absolutely everything is possible. I want to be there as a therapist, to help build you up, support you, but also help you be honest with yourself and accountable. At the end of the day, when all is said and done, my biggest goal for you is going to be simple….for you to no longer need my services. Why? Because if you no longer need my services, it means that you have regained your peace, you have regained your strength, you have regained your confidence. It means that you now have the tools to address any issues that try to derail you, and best of all, you will have the insight to overcome and thrive. So let’s begin this journey together, and get you to the place you want to be, emotionally, mentally, psychologically, and in your sobriety.

Aurelio Ayuso, MSW, LCSW, CAP, ICADC

Clinical Director

Aurelio has worked with those that suffer from the disease of addiction in adults and juveniles alike for over 10 years, beginning in the United States Navy where he proudly served for 20 years, working with those that were succumbed by addiction due to trauma and continuing his passion for helping those in need locally in Central Florida.

He specializes in both Addictions and Trauma, he has worked first as a therapist then as the clinical supervisor to both the Juvenile and Adult Drug Court programs in Brevard County. Aurelio has been instrumental in developing substance abuse treatment programs directly tailored to help those that also suffer from complex trauma due to their addiction. He has been recognized by several organizations for his forward thinking and ability to tailor treatment to individuals in the most restrictive environments.

Mr. Ayuso received his Graduate Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Central Florida in Orlando. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker as well as Certified Addictions Professional in the State of Florida, and Internationally Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor. Aurelio specializes in the treatment of Addiction, Trauma, and Abandonment using strength based strategies deeply rooted in Solution Focused, and Mindfulness Therapies. At the Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic he passionately develops holistic curriculums that foster the belief that through addressing the mind, body, and spirit together, the Disease of Addiction can be addressed successfully.

Robert Lehmann, MHSA

Chief Operating Officer

Bob Lehmann is the Chief Operating Officer at the Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic. He has a Master’s Degree in Human Services Administration with a concentration in Mental Health Administration and over twenty-five years of experience as a senior executive at addiction and mental health treatment facilities.

One of the reasons for his commitment to excellence in addiction treatment was his experience related to family members who suffered from the disease of addiction. Bob has been actively involved in community organizations throughout his career. Recently he was one of the founders of the Florida Addiction Treatment Coalition (FATC) and is its present Vice President. FATC was designed to bring together treatment executives in Florida to advocate on behalf of treatment facilities and the clients they serve adhering to a foundation of integrity and service excellence.

Jose R. Toledo, M.D.

Medical Director

A well-rounded and accomplished individual, Jose R. Toledo, M.D., is the Medical Director of Neuro Psychiatric Addiction Clinic.

Dr. Toledo is a neurologist with 25 years of experience and has been in private practice since 1991 on the Treasure Coast of Florida. He completed his neurology training at the State University of New York and his Fellowship training at the University of Pittsburgh in Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology.

He also completed 24 months of acute inpatient psychiatry at the Western Missouri Mental Health Center, University of Missouri in Kansas City. In 2008, Dr. Toledo participated in and was certified in the continuing medical education activity entitled “Buprenorphine and Office-Based Treatment of Opioid Dependence” from The Medical University of South Carolina during which began his quest to found and head Neuropsychiatric Addiction Clinic.

Dr. Toledo is a brain specialist with particular competence in addiction medicine and out-patient detoxification treatment and integrates the fields seamlessly. He is certified to prescribe Buprenorphine (Suboxone). He incorporates his background in neurology into the addiction field. Dr. Toledo is member/fellow of The American Medical Association, The Florida Medical Association and The American Society of Addiction Medicine