5 common myths about Suboxone that you should know
At New Beginnings Treatment Center, in our Gastonia office, we use an evidence-based medical approach called Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) that has demonstrated success in treating people struggling with opiate use.
It’s challenging to begin treatment for addiction. But it’s important for so many reasons to take the first step forward and receive treatment – which may involve Suboxone. Your mental health provider can help you get through the process by explaining how it works when used properly. This way, you can get through treatment without doubting the efficacy of your medication.
Myth #1: Overdosing on Suboxone is as easy as overdosing with regular opiates.
Reality: It is extremely difficult to overdose on Suboxone alone. It is more difficult to overdose on Suboxone compared to other opiates, because Suboxone is only a partial opiate receptor agonist, so there is a built-in “ceiling” effect. This means there is a limit to how much the opioid receptors are able to be activated by Suboxone, so there isn’t as great a risk of slowed breathing compared with potent opiates such as heroin, oxycodone, or morphine. It does not mean, however, that Suboxone cannot cause an overdose. It can happen especially when it is mixed with sedatives or other chemicals that affect breathing. It is therefore vital that you inform your doctor about all of the medications you are taking before receiving opioid addiction treatment.
Myth #2: Suboxone is only a band-aid solution for real recovery.
Reality: Suboxone can indeed help in achieving real recovery, especially if it is complemented with other methods to address substance use disorder, such as therapy and support groups. Suboxone serves as the foundation in terms of normalizing brain chemistry. Ideally, patients should also receive behavioral counseling from a licensed mental health professional to help them work through their opioid dependence.
Various studies show that those who take Suboxone are less likely to:
- use illicit drugs,
- experience addiction-like loss of control, and
- experience sedation, euphoria, or other functional problems.
Myth #3: Suboxone isn’t treatment for addiction if you aren’t getting therapy along with it.
Reality: In a perfect world, addiction treatment would include MAT and therapy, support groups, housing assistance, and employment support. But that doesn’t mean that one component, in the absence of all of the others, doesn’t constitute valid treatment for addiction. About 10% of people with addiction receive treatment, so while combination treatment is an admirable goal, it is unrealistic to expect that everyone with an addiction will receive all the aspects of treatment that they need, especially without access to regular healthcare, insurance, or both.
Myth #4: All I need is Suboxone and I’ll be cured
Reality: Suboxone is a powerful treatment for addiction, but it works even better when combined with other traditional treatment methods, such as group and individual talk therapy. The more support you have the better. We can help you determine where and how to find resources to ease your re-entry into your life and your community. Our team here at CHOICE Pain & Rehabilitation Center is devoted to your health and full recovery, and we’ll be with you every step of the way.
Myth #5: Suboxone should not be taken for an extended period of time.
Reality: Expert practitioners have different theories on how long Suboxone treatment should last, but there is no evidence to support the claim that Suboxone should be taken for a short period of time as opposed to being maintained on it for the long term, just as a person would manage their diabetes with insulin for the long term.
If you use Suboxone, make sure that you are partnered with a medical professional who will be by your side. If you start experiencing withdrawal symptoms, inform your provider immediately so that they can adjust your dosage.
Call New Beginnings Treatment Center at (704) 334-6574 to schedule an appointment at our Gastonia, North Carolina, office today.