starting suboxone

What is Suboxone?

Suboxone is a brand name medication that contains buprenorphine. Since Suboxone treatment has been around for so long, it has become a household name. So, when I refer to Suboxone, I am talking about a class of medications that include buprenorphine, Subutex, Suboxone and ZubSolv. If you take one of these meds for opioid addiction, you place each dose under your tongue to dissolve on a daily basis. Starting Suboxone requires a brief waiting period between your last opioid use and your first Suboxone dose.

Why do I have to wait to get started?

If you are taking opioids and then you take Suboxone, you will get sick. Before you start treatment you have to wait a while. This waiting period can take up to 24 hours. In some cases, the waiting time can be a bit longer. For example, if you are trying to quit Methadone, you will have to wait for at least 36 hours.

Why do I have to wait?

Even though you are not taking opioids anymore, they stay in your system for a while. You may not feel the effects anymore, but it takes time for your body to eliminate them fully. If you are starting Suboxone and enough opioid remains, the two medications compete for receptors. This causes a sudden onset of withdrawal symptoms. While usually not dangerous, it is unpleasant.

How do I know when I am ready for starting Suboxone?

Here is an excellent reference to help you to assess your level of readiness. Click or tap here to read the document. This reference is provided by The National Alliance of Advocates for Buprenorphine Treatment. The second page has a flowsheet where you can track your progress based on your withdrawal symptoms after quitting opioids.

How do I get through the waiting period?

I realize that you may be struggling to not use more opioids. Addiction is a difficult thing to overcome. You are going to have to make an effort to wait out the hours it will take until you are ready for Suboxone. If you cannot make it for about 18-24 hours, you might want to consider Methadone as an alternative. However, if you go that route, you will have to go to a maintenance clinic every morning for treatment.

This may help you.

If the waiting period is difficult, you may find that recovery literature and recordings will motivate you. Here is one of my favorites. I hope that you find it helpful. Click or tap here for the audio page. It is one of the great convention speakers from NA. I also recommend getting the NA basic text, which you can get on Amazon or Apple iBooks.Starting Suboxone: Read this now to learn everything you need to know.