Suboxone (buprenorphine and naltrexone combination) has more evidence base, better clinical outcomes, and overall higher level of satisfaction than other treatments for opioid addiction. Suboxone not only blocks withdrawal symptoms and cravings, it also blocks the high that users get from the problem opioids for up to twenty-four hours. The patient will not experience the euphoric feeling that comes from abusing most opioid medicines, and it is very difficult to abuse suboxone.
Suboxone is a partial opioid agonist (promoter) which will attach to opioid receptors. A full opioid will affect the brain in the same way the morphine, heroin or oxycodone will. Suboxone contains buprenorphine which is a partial opioid agonist, and nalexone which is an opioid blocker (antagonist). Because this drug blocks the effects of full opioids, doctors have found it useful in deterring an addict from relapsing. By activating the opioid receptors partially and blocking the euphoria this double action to assist the cravings and reduce or completely alleviate the withdrawal symptoms.
A full medical evaluation is required for the induction of suboxone, to include labs. Common Suboxone side effects may include:
- - pain in your tongue, redness or numbing feeling in your mouth
- - mild nausea feeling, constipation, vomiting
- - pain anywhere in the body, or a headache
- - trouble sleeping or insomnia
- - sweating for no reason
- - your arms or legs might swell up.
To stop using Suboxone when you feel you are well enough to do so must be managed by your doctor, he or she will reduce your dose until the Suboxone leaves your system. You should not try this by yourself, always seek medical advice if you feel the need to stop taking Suboxone.
If you think Suboxone might help you, it would be wise to talk to your doctor and also alert him or her about any medications you take regularly. If you are taking sedative medications make sure you tell the doctor. These drugs slow the breathing and can be harmful if taken with Suboxone. If you usually take narcotic medication for pain, you will probably need the advice of your doctor plus the advice of a pain management clinic or doctor to manage your pain while treating your addiction.