Your Prescription for Naltrexone or Nalmefene
Naltrexone and Nalmefene are both opiate blockers that are used to treat alcohol addiction as part of The Sinclair Method.
Naltrexone and Nalmefene have similar effects and are considered interchangeable medications for The Sinclair Method, although your programme will use one medication or the other, depending on your circumstances.
The similarity between the two medications is they are both an antagonist at the mu- and delta-opioid receptors. The difference between them is Nalmefene also acts as a partial antagonist at the kappa receptor. Both drugs are proven to be safe, well-tolerated, easy to manage and effective at treating alcohol dependence.
Naltrexone and Nalmefene form the very foundation of The Sinclair Method by inhibiting the release of endorphins when you consume alcohol.
This neurological effect prevents the brain from gaining pleasure from alcohol. By continuing to drink, your habit-forming behaviour becomes a habit-erasing behaviour, and over time, your dependence on alcohol is made extinct.
Naltrexone and Nalmefene are only effective when you continue to consume alcohol, which is why The Sinclair Method requires you to continue drinking.
Scientific and clinical research has shown that in animals and humans, Naltrexone and Nalmefene are safe to consume. The study of Naltrexone and Nalmefene is extremely well documented for treating alcohol dependence disorder.
We know The Sinclair Method can help people who drink compulsively to get their drinking under control. We also know it can help people with a strong addiction reduce and eventually eliminate their dependence on alcohol.
We offer free, confidential advice about Naltrexone and Nalmefene and can help you establish if The Sinclair Method would work for you. Call us on 0333 444 0315 for a chat with our helpful people about your problem with alcohol. We offer fast assessments and you can start your treatment in under 48 hours.
Medication and Dosage
Naltrexone or Nalmefene + Drinking = your medicine.
Naltrexone was first branded as Revia® in the United States and as Nalorex® in the United Kingdom. The only differences are their branding and maker.
Naltrexone is taken in tablet form as part of The Sinclair Method. Each tablet is 50mg. You take one tablet before your first drink of the day and continue this for the duration of your programme, which will last 3 to 4 months initially.
Nalmefene is branded as Selincro® in Europe and the United Kingdom. It is also taken in tablet form as part of The Sinclair Method. Each tablet is 18mg. As with Naltrexone, you pop a tablet before your first drink of the day.
You should only take the recommended dosage per day. There is no benefit to taking a higher dosage. 50mg of Naltrexone or 18mg of Nalmefene is sufficient to block 100% of the opioid receptors responsible for alcohol craving.
Other than this, there are no special instructions, other than you have to keep drinking — abstinence is not allowed with The Sinclair Method. You must take Naltrexone or Nalmefene and consume alcohol for the treatment to work.
Please note: the exact medication dosage for your particular use case will be determined by your doctor. ‘50mg’ and ‘18mg’ are examples of common dosages.
How Naltrexone or Nalmefene Help Addiction
When you consume alcohol with Naltrexone or Nalmefene, endorphins (happy hormones) are selectively blocked to dissociate alcohol with pleasure.
This has the effect of changing the way your brain responds to alcohol, by shutting down and removing the neural pathways that were formed from drinking.
Over time, this changes your behaviour towards alcohol. The methodology is known as pharmacological extinction. It transforms habit-forming behaviour into habit-erasing behaviour. The science is well studied and proven. Your brain is de-addicted over 3 to 4 months, although for some people it takes a little longer.
The nice thing about Naltrexone or Nalmefene, however, is they do not sap the joy out of life. They merely take away the pleasure from drinking alcohol, so other than a reduced urge to drink (as a result of getting no pleasure from it), you won’t notice a difference.
There are no adverse effects in terms of mood and health. When you drink alcohol on Naltrexone or Nalmefene, you will not aware that the neural pathways that formed from your drinking are breaking down. The process happens gradually, and within a few months, a significant improvement in your habit will be achieved.
Clinical research tells us that the more you drink on Naltrexone or Nalmefene, the weaker your addiction becomes. This isn’t a free pass to get blind drunk – but drinking can help you cure your addiction with the help of Naltrexone or Nalmefene.
As a cure for alcoholism, there is nothing else like it.
If you have already tried detoxing, abstinence and other traditional recovery methods, The Sinclair Method offers you another way to do it. The medications used are safe, well-tolerated and easy to manage. You have nothing to lose by giving it a go.
A Question Of Rationality
If you drink to make you happy and taking Naltrexone or Nalmefene takes away that happiness, why would you carry on drinking?
Also, if you take Naltrexone or Nalmefene, why wouldn’t you stop taking the medication to enjoy that happiness once more?
Well, these questions assume alcohol abuse is rational. It isn’t. There is nothing rational about compulsive drinking or alcohol abuse.
You drink because your brain tells you it needs alcohol. By this stage, you have already developed a habit and your brain associates alcohol with pleasure.
Naltrexone and Nalmefene take away that pleasure. Regardless, you will carry on drinking, because without alcohol, you will start experiencing withdrawal symptoms.
When you are on Naltrexone or Nalmefene, you won’t experience these withdrawal symptoms because your body still gets the alcohol it needs. However, your brain starts to disassociate alcohol with pleasure in time. This is the key. It takes away the ‘want’ of alcohol and brings the act of drinking back under your control.
Working With Your Doctor To Cure Your Addiction
The Sinclair Method is controversial because it asks you to drink to cure your addiction to alcohol. This seems backwards in isolation.
However, if you add Naltrexone or Nalmefene, and The Sinclair method’s idea that it is possible to alter the neural pathways in the brain that make you crave alcohol, you end up with a powerful way to treat alcohol use disorder.
The simplest explanation of The Sinclair Method is this:
The Sinclair Method works by you taking an opiate blocker (Naltrexone or Nalmefene) before your first drink of the day. The opiate blocker disrupts your body’s behaviour/reward cycle, which is driven by endorphins, and over time, it shuts down the neural pathways that have formed from drinking that make you crave alcohol.
The idea that you can take a habit-forming behaviour like drinking and turn it into a habit-erasing behavioural is so radical that clinicians who haven’t heard of it are completely blown away. We have seen this time and time again.
Your doctor / GP may not have heard of The Sinclair Method – however, Naltrexone and Nalmefene are well-documented drugs that are available on the NHS and in private treatment. Your doctor can prescribe them to you as part of a treatment programme, to block the highs and pleasures you get from drinking alcohol.
The decision to prescribe Naltrexone or Nalmefene can be assured with the referral of a specialist addiction centre. This is where we can help – we offer fast assessments and you can start your treatment in under 48 hours. Call us on 0333 444 0315 to get started.
The Sinclair Method aims to reduce craving and drinking to such a point that you no longer have a desire to consume alcohol.
This is different from conventional treatments, which require you to undergo an alcohol detox and ‘manage’ your urges for the rest of your life. What if we said we could eliminate those urges, and free you from the shackles of alcohol?
That’s what The Sinclair Method can do for you.
Things To Know About Naltrexone and Nalmefene
- Naltrexone and Nalmefene are non-addictive and non-abusable, meaning they won’t get you high when you use them.
- When you drink on Naltrexone or Nalmefene, you will still get drunk, but you will not achieve the same level of pleasure.
- Naltrexone and Nalmefene do not alter your perception of other pleasures. They work by selectively breaking down alcohol receptors.
- The effects of Naltrexone or Nalmefene compound over time, reducing your urge to drink over several months.
- You have to keep taking Naltrexone or Nalmefene and keep drinking for The Sinclair Method to work. Naltrexone and Nalmefene do not offer any benefit on their own – they need alcohol.
- Your doctor may require blood tests before prescribing Naltrexone. This is normal. Studies have shown that large doses of Naltrexone can damage the liver. Your doctor will want to make sure you are in a safe bracket.
- You should only take the amount of Naltrexone or Nalmefene that is recommended in your treatment. Taking a higher dose will not speed up the treatment.
- Generally, the safe alcohol limit for men is no more than 24 drinks per week and no more than 16 drinks per week for women. The Sinclair Method will help you get to these safe levels within 3-4 months.
What To Expect From Taking Naltrexone or Nalmefene
Over 3 to 4 months of taking your medication, some of the effects will include:
- Reduced interest in alcohol
- A decreased craving for alcohol
- Less excessive thoughts about alcohol
- Reduced alcohol consumption over time
- An automatic and gradual withdrawal from alcohol
You should feel nothing after you take Naltrexone or Nalmefene. The immediate effects will be no different from taking a placebo.
Fewer than 10% of patients report temporary nausea when taking these medications, and they are not psychoactive, which means they do not have highs or lows.
Something to keep in mind is Naltrexone and Nalmefene do not bring relief from alcohol craving like a painkiller relieves a headache. The effects develop over time, resulting in you withdrawing from alcohol gradually.
Naltrexone or Nalmefene + Drinking = Your Cure
It can be difficult to wrap your head around the idea that you can cure alcoholism by drinking. This would be impossible on its own, but with Naltrexone or Nalmefene, drinking becomes the cure.
This turns the traditional notion of rehabilitation on its head. With a standard rehabilitation programme, you undergo a medically-managed detox to cleanse your body. You then control or manage your urges and live with them for the rest of your life.
The Sinclair Method is different because it can cure your addiction to alcohol. This means you will not have the urge to drink at all. Rather than live with withdrawal, you will be free from it. You will have been successfully de-addicted.
Naltrexone or Nalmefene + Drinking is a suitable treatment for alcohol use disorder and alcoholism. It can also be used as an intervention treatment to stop a habit before it becomes an addiction. If you have a problem with controlling your alcohol intake, then The Sinclair Method could help you take back control.
The main barrier in your way to participating in The Sinclair Method is explaining the process to a doctor who has never heard of the methodology. This is why seeking help from medical experts who have heard of it is so important.
In part 4 of our guide, we will discuss beginning your alcohol de-addiction with Naltrexone (or Nalmefene) + Drinking.
We can help you get started with The Sinclair Method and answer all your questions about Naltrexone and Nalmefene. Call us on 0333 444 0315 for a chat. We’ll take the time to discuss your drinking problem and provide advice.