Suboxone treatment is a useful option for those individuals seeking opioid addiction treatment options. The first opioid approved for treatment use in an office setting, suboxone empowers individuals to be able to receive opioid-based treatment as an outpatient rather than in a hospital setting by empowering individuals to take the medication at home. Qualified patients can receive a prescription and take suboxone as they would any prescription medication.
Suboxone is an orange tablet taken orally and comes in 2mg and 8mg doses. It is actually made of two medications: buprenorphine, the primary active ingredient, and naloxone, which is present to help prevent misuse of Suboxone by injection drug users.
Suboxone operates as a “partial opioid agonist,” meaning its effects are far less potent than other opioids such as Vicodin or heroin. For opioids like this, you will have need a structured heroin addiction treatment plan to work with your addiction from the ground up.
The buprenorphine in suboxone serves to block other opiates from binding to the opioid receptors in the patient’s brain by attaching to empty receptors. This serves to suppress the severity of withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings. While taking buprenorphine, the patient is unable to feel the euphoric rush provided by potent opioids such as Oxycontin, Vicodin or heroin because the receptors are occupied.
Suboxone is placed under the tongue and allowed to dissolve over 5-10 minutes. Patients are instructed not to swallow saliva during this time to allow the fastest absorption of the medication into the bloodstream.
Suboxone treatments differ from other standard opioid treatment methods in important ways. Two most popular alternative methods include going “cold turkey” and using methadone.
The cold turkey method has the patient cutting off the use of all opiates. Doing so causes the full range of withdrawal symptoms, which is mentally and physically painful for the patient. Cold turkey places a large burden on the patient, and due to the physical and mental stress and pain of withdrawal, many patients will relapse into using opiates again.
Methadone treatments are similar to Suboxone in that it can be used as an opiate substitute. Patients must visit a clinic on a daily basis to receive their prescription of methadone. Over the course of treatment, the patient’s dosage may be gradually reduced to wean the patient off dependency, or it may be continued indefinitely as part of maintenance therapy.
Like methadone, Suboxone is also used to either wean patients from opioid dependency or as part of long-term maintenance therapy. Unlike methadone, Suboxone is available via prescription and can be filled at any pharmacy. This alleviates the stress and pressure of visiting a clinic on a daily basis. Also, Suboxone is designed to be harder to abuse or overdose, and its chemical construction makes it easier for a patient to eventually taper off use.
Suboxone treatments begin with patients in mild withdrawal. With initial doses administered in a doctor’s office, patients find with their doctor the proper dosage to yield a lack of withdrawal symptoms. Once the maintenance level is discovered (typically between 12-16mg), it is administered daily. Tapering off can be initiated at any point after that the patient feels comfortable. During the tapering period, the daily dosage is decreased every 2-5 days until the patient is completely free from suboxone use.
Suboxone is designed for anyone with a dependency on opiates. Opiate addiction can affect anyone, regardless of race, gender, or socio-economic background.
Anyone who suffers from addiction to Vicodin, Oxycodone, Percocet, Morphine, Fentanyl, Heroin, Opium or any other Opiate can use Suboxone to overcome their addiction and begin moving forward in a new life.
If you or someone you know is suffering from opiate addiction here in Arizona, know that help is available. We are happy to meet with you and help you discover if suboxone treatment is the best option to help you fight your addiction and reach full recovery. We have helped countless others in the Phoenix area and are here to help you as well.