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Treating Substance Abuse With Suboxone Therapy
Suboxone therapy is used to treat adult patients who are addicted to or dependent on opioid drugs. Suboxone is a prescription medication especially designed to help those with opioid dependency issues. It is often prescribed for use during the initial and ongoing phases of opioid dependency treatment.
Suboxone treatment programs
Suboxone treatment for individuals suffering from dependence on opioids is typically combined with complete programs including various therapeutic aspects (such as therapy or counseling), of which Suboxone is just one part.
What is Suboxone?
Suboxone is a prescription medication that is used to treat addiction to heroin and other short-acting opiates. It is a combination of the drugs Buprenorphine and Naloxone. Buprenorphine is capable of treating physical dependence on opioids, but because of Naloxone, it does not produce any opioid-like effects and does not cause any respiratory or pulmonary depression the way that opioid medication can.
Because of Naloxone canceling any residual opioid-like effect, Suboxone has much less abuse potential, as misuse of the medication does not result in intoxication.
Suboxone is part of a larger treatment program
Because of its unique properties, Suboxone is a safe and effective treatment when used in conjunction with a full therapeutic program involving various other components, such as counseling. Suboxone by itself is not adequate in most cases as a treatment of opioid addiction or dependency, as the underlying issues must be addressed and alternative solutions found to problems that led to the addiction or dependency.
How is Suboxone treatment carried out?
Patients who are dependent on opioid or opiate medication are individually assessed for compatibility with Suboxone treatment prior to being treated. Initial administration of Suboxone in a treatment program is typically conducted on an inpatient basis. This allows medical professionals to observe the patient being treated to ensure that no adverse effects are being experienced. This also allows the individual patient’s dosage to be adjusted to ensure that an amount of Suboxone adequate to control withdrawal symptoms is being administered. The initial, in-patient period of treatment can last anywhere from one to four days and allows for further assessment of the patient being treated for any medical complications or coexisting psychiatric issues.
After this initial period, each patient’s dose of Suboxone is individually customized to the appropriate therapeutic amount that treats the symptoms of withdrawal and greatly decreases the possibility of a relapse. The patient receives psychological counseling, typically in an inpatient or intensive outpatient program. Patients are monitored for drug use by undergoing urinalysis, and their dose of Suboxone is monitored for effectiveness.
After a period usually lasting anywhere from several days to two weeks, patients are treated with an ongoing dosage of Suboxone while participating in weekly therapy or group therapy sessions. Weekly monitoring of the effectiveness of the Suboxone dosage and weekly urinalysis continues to ensure a safe recovery.
The final phase of a Suboxone-based therapeutic treatment is discontinuing the use of Suboxone. This process is medically supervised and will occur at different times for different patients. Some patients may proceed to discontinuation — also sometimes called a detox — within a week or so of initial treatment, though this is not typical. Other patients will require longer stabilization periods.
Is Suboxone therapy right for you or someone you know?
Suboxone therapy is a safe, effective non-opioid medication for the treatment of people suffering from opioid dependency. To be put in touch with a qualified healthcare professional in your area to discuss Suboxone therapy, just click the link below!
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