How It Works and Is It Safe?
Prescribed daily in the form of a dissolvable tablet that is absorbed into the body, Subutex is a partial agonist-antagonist that provides individuals with relief from the physical symptoms of opioid withdrawal. Subutex uses buprenorphine hydrochloride as its active ingredient and provides patients with diminished cravings for continued opioid use while also eliminating symptoms of withdrawal from opioids. Patients who are prescribed Subutex experience the mental clarity that is required in order to focus on the remainder of their recovery.
Subutex was approved in 2002 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat opioid dependence. Due to its safety and effectiveness, Subutex is one of the few medications that has been approved to be a safe treatment option for individuals who are struggling with an addiction to opioids. Individuals who are prescribed Subutex will not risk damaging their vital organs, nor will they experience cognitive impairments in their daily obligations or activities. Because of this, patients who utilize Subutex will be able to play an active role in their recovery as well as adhere to daily responsibilities like attending work or school.
Because Subutex can cause side effects, individuals who are considering using this medication should first consult with a medical professional. When taken as prescribed and under the supervision of a trained medical professional, Subutex is an extremely safe option for treating opioid addiction.
The Effectiveness of Subutex Treatment
Extensive clinical research has confirmed the effectiveness of Subutex when used to treat opioid addiction. Individuals who have utilized Subutex within their medication assisted treatment have noted that they experience a drastic reduction in the physical symptoms of withdrawal, while also experiencing relief from cravings for additional opioid use. Overall, when Subutex is incorporated within treatment, patients experience positive physical outcomes which allow them to focus on the remainder of recovery with a clear and focused mind.
The Benefits of Subutex Treatment Plus Counseling
Treatment for opioid addiction that utilizes Subutex typically involves three phases of treatment. The following phases are typically experienced by patients who have Subutex incorporated into their treatment plans:
Induction: This first phase of treatment takes place when a patient is first introduced to the use of Subutex, and typically occurs shortly after the use of opioids has ceased. The beginning stages of withdrawal are normally experienced during this phase.
Stabilization: During this phase of treatment, most patients are no longer experiencing symptoms of withdrawal or cravings for continued opioid use. Dosages of Subutex can be altered during this time, depending on the treatment requirements of each individual patient.
Maintenance: During the maintenance stage of treatment, patients are able to discuss weaning off of Subutex or transitioning onto another medication, based on the patient’s stability.
Medication assisted treatment often incorporates the use of therapeutic interventions in order to treat the underlying psychological and emotional components of their addiction. Throughout the course of treatment, it is extremely beneficial for patients to receive counseling services simultaneously in order to aid them in progressing towards recovery. Counseling sessions allow patients the opportunity to address and treat the underlying emotional and behavioral factors that may have contributed in their addictive behaviors in the first place. Research has indicated that individuals who receive therapeutic interventions, such as individual and group counseling, are less likely to relapse.
How to Support Your Loved One During Medication Assisted Treatment: The loved ones of an individual who is struggling with addiction can provide immeasurable support throughout the entire process of recovery. As a loved one of someone who is receiving treatment for addiction, it is also important that you receive support of your own. By playing an active role in your loved one’s care, you will be able to gain a deeper understanding of addiction while strengthening your relationship with your loved one.
How You Can Be Successful in a Medication Assisted Treatment Program: If you are struggling with addiction and would benefit from the treatment available through a medication assisted treatment program, please keep in mind the following suggestions to succeed during treatment:
- Follow any and all treatment guidelines set in place by your provider regarding taking Subutex.
- Play an active role in all group and individual counseling sessions that you are scheduled to attend.
- Openly voice any issues that may arise while taking Subutex. Should a problem arise, your treatment provider can appropriately adjust your dosage or medication.
- Refrain from using opioids while taking Subutex.
- Communicate with your treatment provider throughout the course of treatment regarding any concerns that may arise. Our team of medical professionals is here to provide you with the highest quality of care available.
The Side Effects of Subutex
As is the case with any prescription medication, it is important to openly discuss the potential side effects that you may experience while on Subutex. Prior to incorporating Subutex into your treatment program, first speak with your physician regarding other medications that you may be taking, as well as potential interactions that may take place as a result. It is important for individuals who are taking Subutex to be made aware of the following side effects that can potentially occur:
Most common side effects:
- Back pain
- Withdrawal symptoms
Fairly common side effects:
- Runny nose
- Flu-like symptoms
Less common side effects:
- Accidental injury
- Upset stomach
Please contact Southeast Massachusetts Comprehensive Treatment Centers today if you or someone you love would benefit from the treatment options that we provide, or if you wish to learn more about Subutex. Our knowledgeable intake team is available to assist you with any questions that you may have.