Help for Suboxone addiction

Information about Suboxone addiction and resources for getting help. Plus, how to help a friend or family member with Suboxone problems.

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Suboxone addiction help

Suboxone (buprenorphine) is a prescription drug used to help people deail with opiate or opioid addiction. In fact, the drug is prescribed and administered by doctors to manage and control the symptoms withdrawal from drugs like heroin or morphine. However, because of its opioid-agonist affects, Suboxone can become addictive, especially for people who are not currently addicted to other opioids.

If you or someone you know is exhibiting signs of Suboxone addiction, we can help you understand addiction and the process by which you can get help. Read on for more information and ask your questions about Suboxone addiction help at the end.

How to help Suboxone addiction

There are several ways to treat drug addiction or physical dependence on a drug. It is important to note that dependence does not always mean addiction. Dependence is physical in nature while addiction is psychological. If you think you have become dependent on Suboxone, talk to your prescribing doctor. They can help you with adjust the dosage or taper drug use to minimize withdrawal symptoms.

However, Suboxone euphoric effect compels some users to get high, and can therefore be abused (especially when Suboxone is snorted, chewed, or injected). If you abuse Suboxone there are several ways for you to go about the treatment of your addiction. First, it is important to address the chemical dependency of Suboxone. Your body can become dependent on the use of Suboxone, and will need it to function normally. When you are removing Suboxone from your system, your body will go through withdrawal symptoms because of the dependency. After the initial withdrawal treatment, you must then deal with the psychological need for Suboxone. You will need to address the reasons behind use on a psychological level to increase your chance of not using again. The three main stages for Suboxone addiction treatment are:

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1. Suboxone withdrawal

The symptoms of Suboxone withdrawal are similar to the symptoms of opioid withdrawal, but may not be as severe. In early withdrawal these symptoms include agitation, anxiety, muscle aches and insomnia, along with other body agitations. Later on, withdrawal symptoms can become more severe, with vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramping and dilated pupils. Treatments for these symptoms are administered by detox centers other clinics, with medications being subscribed by doctors to treat the nausea and other symptoms. Because of the nature of opioid addiction, withdrawal from Suboxone can have other complications, and it is important to talk to your doctor about your intentions to quit using Suboxone before trying to quit using Suboxone.

2. Physical stabilization and treatment of Suboxone PAWS

Following initial withdrawal from Suboxone, you next need to deal with the protracted withdrawal symptoms (PAWS) of Suboxone abuse. These symptoms can include depression, sleep disturbances and anxiety, and can last weeks or as long as months and years, depending on the severity of Suboxone abuse. It is important to deal with these symptoms, both physically and psychologically, so that you don’t relapse, or return to the use of Suboxone.

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3. Psychological suboxone addiction treatment

After stabilizing your physical condition, psychological treatment for Suboxone addiction becomes incredibly important. Identifying the phychological reasons for compulsive use of Suboxone can help to prevent future use and can help you live a healthier life. It is important to work through behavioral and thought changes with people you trust, such as counselors and fellow addicts. Usually, a complete lifestyle change is necessary in order to stay away from Suboxone in the future.

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Getting help for Suboxone addiction

When attempting to kick Suboxone addiction, you will need to reach out and get help from others. Talk to your family and friends, reach out to a trusted religious or community leader, or call your local government to find out what resources they have available to help deal with Suboxone addiction. It is important not to go through this time alone.

Here is a list of people to contact for help with Suboxone addiction:

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  • An addiction specialist
  • Family and friends
  • Groups such as Narcotics Anonymous, SMART Recovery, or Rational Recovery
  • Psychiatrist
  • Psychologist
  • Social worker
  • Treatment facility
  • Trusted religious or community leader

Reaching out will help you find the best possible resources for a complete recovery from Suboxone use. It will allow you to build a support network in order to get healthy, and stay healthy.

How to help a Suboxone addict

If someone you know is struggling with a Suboxone addiction, there are several ways that you can help them. First and foremost, you must make sure you are not enabling the addict. Do not provide them with money or any drugs. Be careful letting a Suboxone stay with you and providing them with their basic needs. Enabling an addict allows them to continue use, but if you can stop providing them with money, living quarters and essentials, they will be more likely to take their addiction seriously and seek help.

Interventions can also help a Suboxone addict recognize how adductuib affects the people around them. You can organize a formal intervention, which includes bringing in family, friends and an intervention specialist. A formal intervention gives the family a chance to show the addict they are no longer willing to enable their use, and allows them to express their feelings about the addiction.

If you think a formal intervention is too much, you can also intervene informally. Talk candidly with the Suboxone addict about your worries and feelings about their addiction. Be careful not to sound judgmental, but express your feelings clearly, so they understand how the addiction affects you. Research some local 12 step groups or individual counselors to offer your friend or family member support, and show them there are resources available for addiction.

Suboxone addiction helplines

Getting help for Suboxone addiction can be found easily and quickly by calling these hotlines. Help is available, and is as close as a phone call away.

1-800-662-HELP – The government run Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s 24/7 treatment referral line

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1-800-340-0184 – National Substance Abuse Index

1-866-437-3253 – 24 hour addiction hotline connecting you to counselors anywhere in the United States to help you get help with addiction

Help with Suboxone addiction

Still feeling uneasy about Suboxone addiction? Do you have more questions about getting help for yourself or a loved one? Or do you have more information about Suboxone addiction to share? Leave a comment below and we will get back to quickly and personally.

Reference Sources: FDA: Suboxone drug safety
SAMHSA TAP 30: Buprenorphine
Medline Plus: Opiate withdrawal
SAMHSA: Protracted withdrawal
About the author
Lee Weber is a published author, medical writer, and woman in long-term recovery from addiction. Her latest book, The Definitive Guide to Addiction Interventions is set to reach university bookstores in early 2019.


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  1. I currently am dependent on a low dose of subutex. The problem is I have been snorting this for the last few years. O dare not tell my workers as fear of how this may be perceived when I am a single mum with not a great deal of support. Also worried they stop my script and want me to take something worse. I beat myself up.about this and don’t feel proud that I quit hard drugs as I abuse medication.have u anu advice for me. I am prone to depression but worried things all going to effect my young one when she is older as it’s not something a mam ought to do so I do want help but scared to get it

  2. Need to get off. How with out being sick. Been on them for about a year. I’m ready to stop but scared. How can I stop complete

    1. Hi Been on them. I suggest that you speak with your doctor to help you plan an individualized tapering schedule.

  3. How do I know if my sister and her husband are addicted to suboxone? They display signs (slurred speech, and others) and have been on it for over seven years. Anytime our discussions even mention weaning off of it, the situation becomes very tense and I can feel my sister’s resistance. They require lots of financial assistance and have for many years. My sister’s husband got fired recently and we still aren’t sure exactly why. Also, if my sister has any trouble getting to her monthly appointment, she gets very agitated very quickly. How can we know (myself and my cousins who also help with financial support) if we are really helping former addicts, or are we enabling them in using just another drug? If they are abusing the drug, how are they able to pass urine tests each month? Is it something that if they are abusing, could they possibly use it correctly for the last few days before an appointment – would the urine look normal? How long should one expect to stay on suboxone? thank you for any information

  4. How long does suboxone stay in your system, been taking a small dose for a few years. 2 mgs in the morning and 2mgs in the evening, but have cut down in the last week, about 1mg in morning and 1mg in evening. How long will it take to get out of my system for a urine test?

    1. Hello Douglas. Everything depends on drug dosage, frequency of use, time since last use, your metabolism, etc. Usually, buprenorphine (the active ingredient in Suboxone) can be detected in your urine for up to 3 days after one single dose.

  5. I am trying to help a person who wants to detox OFF of Suboxone. Do you have a referral who does this in North Denver, CO. Please help!

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