The length of time an individual stays on Methadone varies as the program is tailored to his/her needs. It is recommended that people remain on Methadone for a minimum of six months. There is no maximum. Most people who are successful in coming off Methadone show the following characteristics:
- Their lives have been stabilized after being on Methadone for more than a year. This includes increased coping skills, better relationships, improved finances, and physical health.
- They have made changes in their lives that promote continued stability without Methadone. This may include supports in the non-drug using community (AA, counsellors, etc), increased stability within the family and fewer legal difficulties.
- The decision to stop Methadone is made together with their nurse/physician. With the support of m.i.n.e. program staff, they are prepared for, and know what to expect from, the tapering process off Methadone.