Can You Form an Addiction to Suboxone?

Most of the time when people are addicted and need treatment, they are suggested to use Suboxone. Suboxone is an FDA-approved oral prescription drug. It is commonly used to treat opioid use disorder. Addiction specialists use medicated-assisted treatment to treat opioid use disorder and Suboxone is one of the few medications used during MAT. Suboxone is a powerful medication known to have opioid-like effects. Suboxone is a prescription-only medication. It’s a prescription medicine with a schedule three (III) classification.  Let’s discuss in detail if it is possible to form an addiction to suboxone.  

Suboxone- An Introduction

Addiction should not be left untreated. Addiction to any substance can not only destroy your life but the life of others. In order to treat opioid addiction, doctors use suboxone. Suboxone is an FDA-approved medication for the treatment of opioid addiction (OUD). According to the American Psychiatric Association, opioid use disorder is defined as the excessive use of opioids that causes severe suffering and impairment (APA). MEDICATIONS FOR OPIOID USE DISORDER (MOUD) is a term that MOUD has been found to cut the risk of lethal overdose in half. It also reduces the risk of nonfatal overdoses, which are both traumatic and medically dangerous.

Suboxone- Forms and strengths

Suboxone comes in the following forms and strengths: 

  • 2 mg buprenorphine / 0.5 mg naloxone
  • 4 mg buprenorphine / 1 mg naloxone
  • 8 mg buprenorphine / 2 mg naloxone
  • 12 mg buprenorphine / 3 mg naloxone

How does Suboxone work?

Suboxone is a medication that assists people in drug rehab who are detoxing from opiate addiction and manage their withdrawal symptoms. Suboxone is often taken after the detox stage has concluded, intending to suppress withdrawals and cravings as one advances through recovery and counseling. Suboxone not only relieves cravings and withdrawal symptoms but also protects people from getting high and relapsing on other opioids if they try to take them.

Suboxone works by attaching to the same brain receptors as other opiates like heroin, morphine, and oxycodone. It blunts intoxication from these other substances, eliminates cravings, and allows many people to return to a life of normalcy and safety. Suboxone is a mixture of two chemicals: buprenorphine and naloxone. 

The main active ingredient, buprenorphine, is a partial agonist and a long-acting opioid. Naloxone, the other component, serves to counteract opioid effects and prevent overuse. Both medications operate in tandem to alleviate the withdrawal symptoms associated with opioid addiction. Naloxone, the secondary component, serves to counteract opioid effects and prevent overuse. Both medications operate in tandem to alleviate the withdrawal symptoms associated with opioid addiction. Suboxone is administered in an outpatient setting, allowing for greater administration flexibility than other medicines. Suboxone is a medication that helps people manage opioid withdrawal safely and effectively.

How is Suboxone taken?

Suboxone is available in the form of tablets. Suboxone can be taken orally-it can be placed under the tongue or between the gums. It takes one dose of suboxone to disintegrate after 5 to 10 minutes. The results of the Suboxone tablet can be seen after 30 to 60 minutes after the dose is administered. The effects last from 42 to 72 hours after the last dose. 

Side effects of Suboxone

Suboxone just like any other opiate, and a variety of other drugs, can also be abused if it is not administered properly. However, it induces far less euphoria than other opiates like heroin and oxycodone since it is just a “partial” agonist of the primary opiate receptor (the “mu” receptor). Many people use Suboxone (or “misuse” it, if using it illegally is defined as using it) to help them manage their withdrawal or even go off heroin or fentanyl. 

There may be some mild side effects after the first dose. Suboxone should always be administered under the strict supervision of a doctor. Here are some of the common symptoms of Suboxone:

  1. Redness in the mouth
  2. Blurry vision
  3. Burning tongue
  4. Redness in the mouth
  5. Blurry vision
  6. Anxiety
  7. Insomnia 
  8. Depression
  9. Constipation
  10. Weakness or fatigue
  • Serious side-effects

Although Suboxone is not known to produce serious side effects if administered properly if you notice the following, it means you require serious help:

  • severe allergic reaction
  • abuse and dependence
  • breathing problems
  • coma
  • hormone problems (adrenal insufficiency)
  • liver damage
  • severe withdrawal symptoms

Can you form an addiction to Suboxone?

This is a common concern and query among individuals considering adding Suboxone to their treatment plan. Here is the short answer: Suboxone addiction is not a risk when the medicine is prescribed and administered under the proper supervision of an addiction specialist. But yes Suboxone does hold the potential to form an addiction. Suboxone can indeed cause dependence, but let’s not confuse “dependence” with “addiction”. The bodily urges and repercussions of not taking a substance, such as a headache from skipping a daily cup of coffee, are referred to as dependence. While it might occur together, it is not the same as addiction.

Addiction is when a person needs to take a substance and has no control over their cravings. Suboxone helps people stop using opioids like heroin and oxycodone and lowers their cravings for more. Patients may feel locked on Suboxone, which raises the question of whether the medication is addictive. They are, however, less likely to die from an overdose, be arrested, lose custody of their children, lose their employment, or suffer health problems as a result of their substance abuse.

Suboxone may be used in increasing dosages to prevent withdrawal symptoms in those who are trying to overcome heroin or other short-acting opiate addiction. Misuse of the drug and, eventually, a suboxone addiction can occur at this point. Suboxone’s negative effects, which include major breathing issues and low blood pressure, can be life-threatening or fatal. 

Suboxone for opioid dependence

Suboxone is an FDA-approved treatment for opioid addiction. Suboxone treatment is recommended for opioid addiction, according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine. It aids in the treatment of opioid addiction by minimizing the symptoms of withdrawal that might occur when opioid use is stopped or reduced.

Dosage for opioid dependence

Suboxone is an FDA-approved treatment for opioid addiction. Induction and maintenance are the two steps of opioid addiction treatment. Suboxone is only used for induction treatment if an individual is dependent on short-acting opioids such as heroin, codeine, morphine, or oxycodone (Oxycontin, Roxicodone).

An individual should use Suboxone oral film under their tongue during induction treatment. Don’t use it on your cheek because this is more likely to cause withdrawal symptoms. For roughly two hours, your doctor will assess your withdrawal symptoms and see how you react to the dose. Then after careful administration, your healthcare provider will give you another dose of Suboxone if necessary. On the first day, the maximum total dose is 8 mg buprenorphine / 2 mg naloxone. This step-by-step procedure may be repeated for several days until your withdrawal symptoms have been controlled and stabilized for at least two days. 

Can You Overdose on Suboxone?

While injections of Suboxone have the highest risk of Suboxone overdose, all forms can lead to a Suboxone overdose at high doses. Furthermore, no one knows how much can lead to a Suboxone overdose. Because each person is different, what leads to a Suboxone overdose in one person may not in another. When the body is unable to metabolize the amount of Suboxone in the body, an overdose occurs. 

Benefits of Suboxone

Suboxone treatment is effective for people who are addicted to opioids. Individuals in recovery who are free of cravings and withdrawal symptoms are more likely to engage in other aspects of OUD treatment, such as behavioral therapy and social support groups. Suboxone is used in MOUD therapy to help people wean themselves off opioids and avoid hospital detoxification. Here are some of the benefits of using Suboxone:

  • It causes an individual to have lesser cravings for opioids
  • The high success rate of recovery
  • It suppresses the withdrawal symptoms of opioids
  • A convenient method to get rid of addiction
  • It has very less risk  of abuse
  • Very affordable method of addiction treatment
  • It reduces the risk of relapse 

How does Suboxone differ from Methadone?

Methadone is a medication that is also often used to treat opioid addiction. It affects the body’s response to pain in the brain. It helps to lessen the discomfort of withdrawal symptoms. However, it has a stronger euphoric impact than Suboxone and does not have the same minimal danger of overdosing as Suboxone.

The final note…

Around 10-20% of people with opioid use disorder receive proper treatment. So, while combined treatment is a desirable objective, expecting everyone with an addiction to obtain all elements of treatment that they require is unreasonable, especially when you consider that many people who suffer from addiction also lack regular healthcare and health insurance. Furthermore, Suboxone treatment without therapy has been shown to be very successful. But to increase the chances of a long-term recovery it is advisable to get therapy as well. 


Categories: Health

Nicolas Desjardins

Hello everyone, I am the main writer for SIND Canada. I've been writing articles for more than 12 years and I like sharing my knowledge. I'm currently writing for many websites and newspapers. I always keep myself very informed to give you the best information. All my years as a computer scientist made me become an incredible researcher. You can contact me on our forum or by email at [email protected].