How Can Buprenorphine be Addictive?
Buprenorphine creates similar effects as other opioids. While it is a partial agonist of the main opiate receptor, the euphoric effects are less than what heroin or oxycodone creates. Naloxone is also added to buprenorphine to decrease the likelihood of diversion and misuse.
Suboxone, a brand name for buprenorphine, can still be misused even when prescribed. Generally, it is prescribed to manage withdrawal or help someone get off heroin or pain medication.
Long-term use of suboxone can potentially lead to misuse, dependence, and withdrawal symptoms, requiring medical detox and possible treatment.
How Do You Stop Taking Buprenorphine (Suboxone)?
When a physical dependence develops from using buprenorphine, the first step involves working with a medical practitioner to taper off the drug safely. Medically supervised detox would also likely be needed to treat withdrawal symptoms.
Treating addiction, however, requires inpatient long-term drug rehab upon completing medical detox. Rehab would address underlying issues and the motivating factors causing someone to misuse drugs like buprenorphine.
Our experts recommend using our directory to find adequate medical detox and residential drug rehab in your state.
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What type of drug is buprenorphine?
Buprenorphine is an opioid drug primarily developed to help people detox from other commonly abused opioids. It is the primary active compound in several medications, including Suboxone and Subutex. It produces less euphoria and has a longer duration of action than most other opioids, making it a candidate to help ease people off dangerous and less regulated opioids like heroin.
What does buprenorphine look like?
Buprenorphine exists in many forms but is commonly seen as a tablet or sublingual film. As a tablet, it may appear hexagonal and orange or oblong and white. As a film, it may appear translucent and rectangular. Buprenorphine may also be found as a lozenge dissolved under the tongue or a patch worn on the skin.
How long does buprenorphine stay in your system?
Buprenorphine can be found in detectable levels in the urine for up to six days after cessation of use. In cases where the drug isn’t used regularly or in high doses, this may take as few as three days.
Is buprenorphine addictive?
Yes. Despite being used as a treatment for opioid addiction, buprenorphine is an addictive opioid drug that brings a potential for misuse and addiction. The drug’s role in substance abuse treatment has grown since its introduction, and it’s now frequently used for opioid maintenance therapy much in the way that methadone has been for decades. Individuals who desire to stop taking the drug may attend a treatment program to get off buprenorphine due to the withdrawal symptoms. Patients detoxing from buprenorphine often report experiencing extremely uncomfortable symptoms for weeks rather than days, followed by lingering symptoms like insomnia and anxiety, which can last for months.
How is buprenorphine used?
Buprenorphine is most commonly taken orally or sublingually. It may also be taken transdermally via a patch worn on the arm or a similar body part. Sometimes buprenorphine may be dissolved and injected intravenously when misused, but this can be extremely dangerous.
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