It is hard to turn on the news without hearing stories of lives damaged by opiate addiction or ended by overdose. Many people are looking for help with this chronic condition. In recent years, Suboxone has become an important tool in the treatment of narcotic addiction. This article will explore how Suboxone works and what happens in the body when it is used as a treatment for opiate dependence.
What is Suboxone
Suboxone is a prescription treatment for opiate addiction. This medicine is a combination of two compounds, Buprenorphine and Naloxone. It is normally taken daily, either as a pill which dissolves under the tongue or as a dissolving film.
The two substances that are combined in Suboxone play different roles. Buprenorphine, itself a milder opiate, is the main active ingredient. In the brain, it attaches to the same receptors as stronger opiates, reducing cravings for the patient.
Naloxone is a compound that blocks the effects of opiates. Its primary role in Suboxone is to prevent abuse. When taken orally as directed, the drug is effective. If someone tries to take Suboxone by injection, the Naloxone will prevent the opiate from providing a high.
What does Suboxone do to your body
Suboxone acts as a treatment to step down from stronger opiates. The symptoms of withdrawal are one of the major concerns for addicts trying to quit. If someone has become physically dependent on opiates, quitting can be both a painful and anxious time. Strong cravings for another dose become all-consuming. Because Suboxone mimics the action of stronger opiates, cravings are not as strong and withdrawal not as difficult.
Suboxone contains a milder opiate, and some patients report a slight high when first taking the drug. However, because the effects are milder, and the cravings reduced, you can live a much more normal life while undergoing Suboxone treatment. In conjunction with other behavioral therapies, Suboxone can help you establish new, positive habits and get your life back together.
Are there other effects of Suboxone?
The Buprenorphine in Suboxone is a milder opiate. As such, it does have side effects similar to other opioid substances. Some reported side effects of Suboxone are
- Muscle ache
Another important concern with Suboxone is withdrawal. Suboxone is intended as a long-term treatment, a milder opiate taken intentionally to avoid stronger opiates, such as heroin. However, even though it is milder, there will still be a physical dependence on the drug. If you stop taking Suboxone suddenly, especially early on in the recovery process, you may experience withdrawal symptoms. For this reason, it is important to take Suboxone only under medical supervision. Over time, as the dosage lowers, you will become less dependent on the drug, perhaps one day being free of opiates altogether.
Support on a Challenging Path
Ending an opiate dependence is a difficult journey. It will take time to get clean. It will take time for your brain to reset itself. Recovery will be a great challenge, but you do not need to do it alone. Treatments like Suboxone can be a big help in getting started and continuing on the path. If you are ready to take the first step, call us at 800-737-0933.