Suboxone is a prescription that is used to treat people who are addicted to opioids (Oxycodone, Heroin, Morphine, etc.). It is an addiction treatment that is very controversial. It has two active ingredients buprenorphine and naloxone. Yes, the buprenorphine is an semi-synthetic opioid. It works by binding to the same receptors as other opioids do, which then block withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Naloxone is an opioid blocker used to prevent misuse. If you are dependent on a full opioid agonist and attempt to inject Suboxone, the naloxone is likely to cause withdrawal signs and symptoms (some abusers may have found a way to avoid the symptoms and still abuse it). They both are ingredients that really work well with each other. Not only does the naloxone help with misuse, the buprenorphine attaches to the opioid receptors. When it does this, if someone uses heroin, or any other opioid, it would be a waste. The buprenorphine will stay attached to the receptor, therefore the heroin will not reach the receptor to even feel the affects of it.
The hard part? Finding an actual Suboxone doctor. Wait, I should rephrase that… finding an actual Suboxone doctor who is there to really help you get clean, not just to put more cash in his/her wallet. See the problem is many Suboxone doctors only accept cash, for everything. The prices do range, but some are $300 the first three months, then decrease down to $200, others are $200, then decrease to $150. That is PER MONTH. Not only is the doctor appointment expensive, that doesn’t take in to account of urine tests they do (some doctors allow insurances to cover this) and the Suboxone itself. Some insurances do cover the actual prescription, others may only cover some which still may lead to a $100 a month prescription. Out of pocket with no insurance for this prescription can be as high as $900 a month. Now do you see why many addicts are still exactly that… addicted? These doctors are kind of dirty Suboxone doctors. They want it all in cash, so they don’t have to put it on record, which then goes straight to their pocket. Another bad thing? Some doctors don’t even make them receive counseling, or attend meetings. That’s a crucial part in “working the program.”
Suboxone DOES work as long as you work the program correctly. That doesn’t mean go to one meeting just to get the paper signed to show your doctor, or to take your medicine every morning and forget about your recovery the rest of the day. It means going to meetings and being apart of them. There is even online meetings for people who don’t feel comfortable enough, even though they’re anonymous. It means finding a counselor you feel comfortable enough to open up to. It means finding yourself all over again and how to finally get your life back on track and pursue your dreams that you have always had. It means to always remember that you are a recovering addict and will need to take it one day at a time. It means if you are down and thinking about relapsing, to find someone to call and talk to. It can be your sponsor, a friend, or a family member. Whomever you feel comfortable with, CALL! As long as you do all of this (and even more for some) you can and will get clean off Suboxone.
Does Suboxone get abused? Absolutely, but what can’t be abused anymore, really? People who do not take this treatment serious give people who actually are taking it seriously a bad name. People who just use it for a quick fix or to get high, make it seem like it’s not a good treatment. For some you’re right it isn’t. This treatment is not for some people, but it works for others! It works for people who finally want to regain control of their life. I see so many posts either downgrading Suboxone making it seem like a bad treatment, or others downgrading the actual user. It really upsets me… like I said it doesn’t work for some people, but don’t degrade ones who do use it properly and who are actually recovering because of this treatment. To say that a person who is using this treatment isn’t “clean,” is so wrong. Seriously, if they are working the program, if they’re not stealing and lying to friends and family like before, shooting up heroin or snorting pills, how are they not clean? If they actually have custody of their children again, have a vehicle, a house or apartment, a job, money in their bank account, and just having control finally, how are they not clean? Heroin addiction and taking medicine prescribed and monitored by a doctor to treat addiction is SO DIFFERENT and definitely not “trading one drug for another.” Its a treatment, that works well for some, so don’t bring them down because it didn’t work for you or you don’t agree with it.
I seen someone say, “Unlike opiate withdrawal symptoms that last maybe up to a week, these Suboxone withdrawal symptoms can last for several weeks to several months.” Opiate withdrawal symptoms can also last for several weeks to several months, so to sit and say that Suboxone withdrawal symptoms are longer and worse, is just false. Both of these withdrawals can happen for whatever amount depending on the patient. One person can get off opiates easier then Suboxone, another person can get off Suboxone easier than opiates. It also depends if the user is abusing Suboxone or not. There is a thing called tapering down, in which your doctor (who is actually there to help you) will do so eventually. Could you taper down while on opiates? Sure, but chances of someone doing that and sticking to it are slim because its right in front of your face with no one to help control it, other than yourself. If you taper off Suboxone slowly, but still manageable, you will get off of it easily. Will you feel slight withdrawal symptoms and feel a little crappy? Probably, but it wont be even close to what you would have had with quitting cold turkey from your actual addiction, unless you abused your Suboxone.
Please people, if you take your recovery serious, get a good doctor, and work the program you can get clean and isn’t as dangerous as most people think it is. Obviously it works for some people and not others, but to classify it as dangerous (for the people who are on it and doing good) along with pretty much criticizing people who are on it and doing well, is wrong. Making it seem like it’s a drug that doesn’t work and won’t work for them, or even scaring them about the withdrawal symptoms being worse is ridiculous. Whoever is on Suboxone reading this and doing absolutely awesome on it, keep doing what you’re doing. Don’t let any of the people who disagree with Suboxone treatment bring you down. You’re CLEAN and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise! If it works for you, it works for you!