Suboxone is a highly effective medication prescribed by addiction treatment professionals to treat opioid addiction. It contains the active ingredients buprenorphine and naloxone. It is available in filmstrip form and should be taken once a day as directed by a doctor as part of comprehensive Medication-Assisted Treatment.
Opioids, also known as opiates, are natural and synthetic drugs that interact with the nervous system to relieve pain. Most commonly abused opioids are heroin, morphine, and prescription painkillers like Demerol, OxyContin, and Vicodin.
It is a medication that blocks opiate receptors in the nervous system and reverses the effects of opioids. It is often used in the treatment of opioid overdoses. The naloxone in Suboxone has no effect if Suboxone is taken as directed. Rather, naloxone is added to Suboxone to deter intravenous abuse. If an individual tries to inject Suboxone, the naloxone will activate and block the opiate receptors. This will prevent the individual from experiencing a high, and will cause them to experience withdrawal symptoms.
Suboxone stimulates the opiate receptors in the brain, suppressing cravings and withdrawal symptoms for 24 hours.
Suboxone is for individuals who are struggling with severe opioid addiction and are unable to focus on the clinical aspects of rehab. It has also proven effective among individuals for whom other forms of addiction treatment did not work.
Addiction treatment needs vary depending on the individual. Length of treatment will be determined based on their health, history of use, and the severity of their addiction. However, once the individual is ready and has established a strong foundation for sobriety, they can taper off Suboxone under medical supervision.
The most common side-effects include headache, insomnia, stomach pain, dizziness, nausea, drowsiness, and sweating. Although serious side-effects are rare, they can occur, as can severe allergic reactions. Individuals should only take Suboxone in a rehab setting or under medical supervision.
Suboxone contains buprenorphine, a low-level opioid, and while it is less addictive than more potent opioids, there is potential for developing a dependency to the drug. Because it is possible to become addicted to Suboxone, it is important that individuals carefully follow the dosage prescribed by their doctor.
It is possible to overdose on Suboxone, and in some cases, overdoses can be fatal. Overdoses are more likely to occur when using Suboxone with alcohol or other drugs. The most common signs of Suboxone overdose include slowed heartbeat, loss of physical coordination, depressed breathing, nausea, vomiting, and seizures. An individual experiencing an overdose should seek immediate medical attention as symptoms could cause long-term damage or death.
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