The Truth About Suboxone
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What is Suboxone?
Suboxone is a prescription medication FDA-approved to help treat opioid addiction. It combines buprenorphine (a partial opioid) with naloxone (an opioid blocker).
What is Suboxone Used For?
Suboxone is used as a much safer substitute for those addicted to opioid drugs like heroin or prescription pain medications like Vicodin.
In combination with therapy, multiple studies show that Suboxone significantly reduces the chance of relapse by:
- Alleviating withdrawal symptoms – so patients feel physically much better
- Fighting cravings – so the brain isn’t constantly signaling for drugs
- Preventing other opioids from interacting with opioid receptors – so opioids don’t produce the high if taken and lose appeal
Suboxone is not used for pain relief.
The pain relief function is dulled with the Naloxone to prevent abuse.
Is Suboxone an Opiate?
Suboxone is an opioid, but technically not an opiate because it is man-made and not from the natural poppy plant.
- Opiates refer to natural opioids such as heroin, morphine and codeine.
- Opioids describes all natural, semisynthetic and synthetic opioids.
Suboxone is in a different category than all other opioids like oxycodone or heroin.
The FDA approved generic Suboxone in 2018. Although there is published research of patients noticing a difference when switching to generic Suboxone, the medications are the same mix and potency.
|Generic Suboxone||Cheaper|| |
Half the price of brand-name Suboxone
|Zubsolv||More potent and easier for the body to absorb||More expensive|
|Bunavail||Lower dose options||Discontinued in US|
Buprenorphine without the Naloxone blocker is too addictive to be prescribed for long-term home use, but there are options administered at clinics that are great alternatives to Suboxone.
|Sublocade||Shot given at a clinic||One month|
|Probuphine||One-inch rod implanted under the skin on the arm||Six months|
|Subutex||Tablet placed under the tongue, usually only given at a clinic or for 3 days maximum for at-home detox||1 day|
Naltrexone is a great alternative to Suboxone because there is no opioid at all, meaning no risk of abuse or withdrawals.
The brand Vivitrol comes in the form of a shot, given once a month to ensure compliance. Since Naltrexone blocks the effects of opioids, patients may stop taking Naltrexone in daily pill form (Revia or Depade).
Suboxone Side Effects
Patients starting Suboxone are going through opioid withdrawal, which involves unpleasant symptoms. Distinguishing between side effects and withdrawal symptoms is complex.
Side effects listed by the manufacture:
- Numb mouth/pain in tongue
- Feeling faint or blurry vision
- Lower back or side pain
- Irregular heartbeat
- Nausea and vomiting
- Problems with concentration
- Feeling warm or sweating
- Fever or chills
- Flushing or redness of the skin, especially on the face and neck
Generally, people feel better and more energetic right after taking Suboxone because it’s curbing withdrawal symptoms. This is true even when used for months.
Serious side effects are very uncommon when the medication is taken as directed.
Suboxone Withdrawal Symptoms
Stopping Suboxone abruptly will cause withdrawal symptoms. The effects of Suboxone withdrawal are the same as other opioids.
- Muscle Aches
- Drug Cravings
Suboxone withdrawal is less severe than full opioids. In fact, the main ingredient of Suboxone is used to treat withdrawal symptoms for painkillers or heroin.
Stopping Suboxone cold turkey will make withdrawal symptoms much worse. Instead, make a plan with your doctor to taper down instead.
Suboxone is a Schedule III controlled substance. It can only be prescribed by certified doctors as regulated by the federal government.
Journey Pure has Suboxone treatment clinics across Tennessee and Kentucky.
Suboxone Clinics in Lexington, KY that Take Insurance
Louisville Suboxone Clinic
Suboxone Clinic Elizabethtown, KY
Nashville Suboxone Clinic
Suboxone Clinic Knoxville, TN
Suboxone Clinic Murfreesboro, TN
Suboxone Clinics in Bowling Green, Kentucky
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