Suboxone is a highly addictive prescription medicine that is most often used to treat addictions to opioids or narcotic pain relievers. Some doctors prescribe the drug as a pain relief medication, and it should only be taken as prescribed or as part of a comprehensive treatment plan that also includes counseling.
Suboxone is a commonly prescribed medication due to the opioid crisis in the United States. In 2016, around 2.1 million people reported that they either misused or were dependent on opioids, such as heroin, or prescription painkillers. However, Suboxone is often misused in the same way opioids are because they act in a similar way with the brain.
Suboxone contains two active ingredients, buprenorphine and naloxone. The former ingredient is the primary active ingredient and is considered a partial agonist, which means it can attach to the same brain receptors as other opioids and reduce their effects by blocking them from those receptors. The latter ingredient helps prevent the misuse of Suboxone by causing withdrawal signs and symptoms upon taking the drug. While the high experienced from opioids does not translate to Suboxone, the brain still believes it’s an opioid and reacts in a similar manner. This is why many doctors prescribe the drug to treat for opioid addiction as it is used to mitigate withdrawal symptoms.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Suboxone in 2002 for the sole purpose of treating opioid addiction. First sold under the name Subutex, a generic version of the drug was available by 2009. Since its release, Suboxone has been released to the public under multiple brand names:
- Suboxone Film
Suboxone might be legal with a prescription and might be used for opioid addiction treatment, but it’s still a harmful substance if misused and it can ruin someone’s life. If you or a loved one struggle with an addiction to Suboxone, either with or without a prescription, help is available. The Recovery Village has treatment centers located throughout the country and can provide assistance for those suffering from Suboxone addiction.
When people continue to take Suboxone, either as a large dosage or over a consistent amount of time, they can develop an addiction to the drug. The brain relies on Suboxone or another opioid to interact with certain receptors and help the body perform essential functions. If the drug is not present, this can create withdrawal symptoms when people attempt to rehabilitate from Suboxone.
Withdrawal and detoxification from a drug like Suboxone can be quite challenging for people. However, there are Suboxone treatment centers available to assist people in eliminating the drug’s dosage while also addressing their opioid addiction in a safe manner.
If someone takes too much Suboxone in a short period of time, uncomfortable side effects could emerge, including:
- Respiratory depression
- Watery eyes
- Slurred speech
- Memory issues
These are all signs that someone could be addicted to Suboxone and needs rehabilitation. Instead of attempting an at-home detoxification method, which many people try, seeking a reputable treatment center is the safest manner to begin a rehab from Suboxone addiction.
While each person’s path to recovery is different, people suffering from Suboxone addiction commonly start with detoxification and withdrawal. This involves facing uncomfortable symptoms as the body readjusts to no longer having the drug in the system or interacting with the brain. Many people struggle to complete this process without the help of medical supervision, which is why it’s recommended to seek assistance from doctors and nurses rather than trying an at-home detox.
The withdrawal symptoms associated to Suboxone addiction can be moderated to lighten the discomfort of detoxification. Doctors and nurses may use replacement medications or taper off the dosage amount of Suboxone to avoid severe symptoms for the patient. However, a proper recovery cannot begin without experiencing some of these withdrawal symptoms, which include:
- Body aches
- Concentration problems
- Depression or mood swings
- Fear of going crazy
- Insomnia or sleepiness
Detoxification largely involves the physical aspect of recovering from drug addiction; a person’s body is stabilized, the drug is removed from the system, and many of the withdrawal symptoms come and go. Once this final stage ends and withdrawal symptoms lessen in severity, most patients move on to residential treatment, which involves a greater focus on the psychological aspect of recovery.
Suboxone residential treatment, also called inpatient rehabilitation treatment, involves the client staying full time at a facility providing 24-hour care. This step often occurs once detoxification concludes and most of the withdrawal symptoms associated to Suboxone addiction subside. However, many people continue to experience certain withdrawal symptoms, including psychological ones and cravings for the drug, while undergoing inpatient rehab for Suboxone addiction.
Residential treatment is an important part of the recovery process and necessary for most people undergoing rehabilitation. Few people can elect to skip this stage and build upon the foundation created from detoxification. When a person enrolls at a facility for Suboxone residential treatment, they participate in individual and group therapy sessions, interact with and find support from others suffering from the same struggles, remove themselves from unhealthy or disruptive home or social environments, and more. Other benefits of Suboxone residential treatment include the potential for dual-diagnosis treatment, which would involve the medical staff and client evaluating any co-occurring illnesses, including:
- Mental health issues such as anxiety, panic attacks or personality disorders
- Eating disorders
- Addiction to other harmful substances
Successful residential treatment will help clients develop the recovery skills to pursue a healthier life once rehabilitation ends. Once this stage concludes, clients progress to the next level of care that is appropriate to their personalized plan.
A Suboxone outpatient program enables those in recovery to pursue an independent life free from the disease of addiction. Outpatient programs provide daily or weekly therapeutic support and counseling so people can progress through their rehabilitation and transition from 24-hour medical supervision to daily sober living.
Outpatient rehabilitation allows clients to live at home and participate in a Suboxone outpatient program. This type of program provides people with more freedom during their treatment and gives clients the ability to maintain a job and resume day-to-day responsibilities at home and with family or friends. While this step usually comes once Suboxone inpatient rehabilitation ends, some clients elect to jump from detoxification to outpatient rehab. While this is not recommended for most people undergoing Suboxone rehabilitation, skipping inpatient rehab can be effective for some patients, depending on their dosage level before entering rehab and whether they have completed a rehabilitation program before.
In outpatient drug rehab, clients can participate in mental health counseling, 12-step programming, family and group therapy, and more. Outpatient participants can learn how to cope with environmental triggers as they arise in their daily lives and manage co-occurring disorders. People who are just starting outpatient care might need daily sessions with a therapist or clinical staff, while clients who are further along in recovery or with less-severe substance use disorders can be successful with a weekly or twice-weekly Suboxone outpatient program.
Outpatient programs usually last anywhere from one month to three months, as this is the window of time in which clients typically experience intense cravings and psychological withdrawal symptoms and are at risk of recurring use. The length of time a client spends in outpatient rehabilitation depends on their mental stability, physical health and their progress in recovery during earlier stages.
The Recovery Village offers outpatient rehabilitation throughout the country as part of its comprehensive recovery plans for clients. During a Suboxone outpatient program, clients can participate in:
- One-on-one counseling
- Medication management for lingering withdrawal symptoms, cravings or co-occurring disorders
- Group and family therapy sessions
- Nutritional coaching
- Recreational therapy
- Sober living housing, if needed
The level of care provided during outpatient rehabilitation is typically the least intense and often one of the last parts of a person’s recovery. By this time, a person’s health has improved and the body no longer physically relies on the drug. For each client, outpatient programs offer the opportunity to transition back to a normalized life while continuing to use the safety net of regular medical help and counseling.
Since outpatient rehabilitation does not involve monitored residence, clients need a high amount of dedication to their recovery and be able to handle the freedom that comes from living independently from medical care. If clients are able to return to their regular daily routines and continue a healthy lifestyle free from Suboxone, there are many benefits to an outpatient rehab program:
- Less commitment: On average, this stage requires less time and money.
- Greater privacy: Clients will not have to disclose to their employers or friends that they are receiving treatment.
- Greater autonomy: Clients hold themselves accountable to continue their recovery but can seek medical support when needed.
- Collective support: Individual counseling, along with group and family therapy options, help clients build a network of supporters and remain strong during rehabilitation.
Suboxone addiction and rehabilitation can include many obstacles, including the freedom associated to outpatient care. However, a safe and effective detoxification method and properly managing withdrawal symptoms can set the foundation for future success in recovery. Undergoing an inpatient treatment plan before progressing to outpatient also continues to build healthier habits and choices before granting clients that autonomy.
Suboxone treatment is available in any state. The only work left to do is find the one that checks the most boxes in terms of care offered, location convenience, and cost. The Recovery Village provides Suboxone treatment centers throughout the country — with locations in Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Maryland and Washington — and can help potential clients enroll in the one nearest to them for an easier transition and to begin rehabilitation as soon as possible.
Addiction to any drug, including Suboxone, is a heavy burden to carry. However, help is available and recovery from addiction is possible. Seeking a medical facility such as The Recovery Village can be the important step you or your loved one needs to succeed in living without harmful substances. Suboxone addiction is common in the United States — especially considering it’s often prescribed and easy to acquire — but The Recovery Village has a trained medical staff with the knowledge and skills to help clients build the framework for a healthier life.
Call The Recovery Village as soon as possible if you or a loved one is in need of Suboxone addiction treatment. An associate will assist you in finding the appropriate rehabilitation center and help you build a program that fits your needs.
The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.