Suboxone Treatment FAQ

Learn about the benefits and potential risks associated with Suboxone treatment for opioid addiction.

Suboxone is used to treat opioid addiction by preventing symptoms of withdrawal from heroin or other opiates drugs. While it has been proven effective in the treatment of opioid addiction, Suboxone use does carry some risks and has potential for abuse. Learn more about Suboxone treatment in this FAQ:

What is Suboxone treatment?

Suboxone is a medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction that is made up of two combined medications. The main ingredient in Suboxone is buprenorphine, which is a "partial opioid antagonist" that produces less powerful effects than "full opioid antagonist" drugs such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine, and heroin. This makes it effective in the treatment of opioid addiction as it suppresses withdrawal symptoms and also provides some pain relief without producing any euphoric effects. Buprenorphine is combined with the drug naloxone, which is an opioid blocker. Together, the combination of these medications makes Suboxone. Suboxone treatment is used as an effective component in overall drug addiction treatment programs that supports the education, counseling, and behavioral therapies provided to patients who are receiving treatment for drug addiction.

What makes Suboxone different from methadone?

 A safer alternative to methadone, Suboxone has a much lower abuse potential, as it does not provide euphoria in patients with opioid addiction. Suboxone side effects are also minimal in comparison to the side effects of methadone. Also, it suppresses withdrawal symptoms as well as cravings to use opioids, and it blocks the effects of other opioids for at least 24 hours. There have been reported success rates of Suboxone treatment as high as 40 to 60 percent, according to

Can you overdose on Suboxone?

Normal opioid overdoses are treated with naloxone, which is included in Suboxone, making it more difficult to overdose on the substance, but it is still possible. Suboxone is a partial opioid antagonist; therefore, it is still an opioid medication. Also, if a person who is taking Suboxone then drinks alcohol or takes benzodiazepines, the combination of drugs can also cause an overdose. Can you overdose on Suboxone? While it is less likely to overdose on Suboxone compared to other opiates, the answer is still yes, so caution should always be used when taking this medication.

What are common Suboxone side effects?

According to , the maker of this medication cites that Suboxone side effects may include respiratory problems, sleepiness, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and impairment with coordination, liver problems, allergic reaction, decrease in blood pressure, or opioid withdrawal symptoms.

What are the benefits of Suboxone treatment?

Suboxone has been shown to be very effective in the treatment of opioid addiction. It has a lower potential for abuse, and patients have greater accessibility to the drug as it can be administered in a doctor's office, not just dispensed in specialized addiction clinics, the way methadone is. It has a high success rate for opiate dependence, but it works best when used in concurrence with a comprehensive treatment program. Suboxone cannot cure addiction on its own, but it is very effective when used alongside a full range of other treatment methods that include withdrawal/detox assistance, specialized treatment that addresses physical dependence, cognitive behavioral therapy, family therapy, motivational interviewing and incentives, and relapse prevention methods. Patients who undergo all facets of treatment are able to resume life with all of the tools they need to change their behavior and sustain recovery on a long-term basis.

If you or a loved one has an opioid addiction and are ready to seek help and get clean, consider medication-assisted treatment with Suboxone.




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