With locations across the country, our Buprenorphine clinics provide adults struggling with addiction the ability to recover from heroin, oxycodone, Percocet, and other opiates.
Learn About Buprenorphine
Heroin, morphine, and other prescription painkillers are substances that many people abuse today. The pleasurable sensations that these drugs elicit can be enough to trap people into ongoing cycles of abuse and subsequent addiction when treatment is not received. The negative effects of this form of substance abuse can be far-reaching and long-lasting, leading irreversible detriments to impact the lives of those who use these dangerous substances.
Overcoming an opioid addiction can be monumentally difficult, seeming impossible for those facing this challenge. One of the biggest hindrances that prevents individuals from stopping their opioid use is the fact that, upon cessation of such use, withdrawal symptoms will arise. These symptoms can be extremely uncomfortable and can lead individuals back into using, simply to alleviate the distress that the withdrawal period elicits. Even those who have the best intentions in regards to putting an end to their opioid abuse can find the withdrawal period to be too much to handle.
Fortunately, there are options for treatment that can help minimize the effects of this withdrawal, ultimately making recovery achievable. Buprenorphine is a medication that can be used in the treatment of opioid addiction, as it helps to alleviate withdrawal symptoms while keeping cravings for continued use at bay.
This medication is administered as a dissolvable tablet that is placed under the tongue and rapidly absorbed into the blood stream. By taking Buprenorphine, individuals are able to stop using opioids without suffering from the negative effects that the cessation of use elicits when Buprenorphine is not taken. As a result, individuals have the clarity of mind to focus on other aspects of their recovery.
Safety and Effectiveness of Buprenorphine for Treating Opioid Addiction
Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2002 for the treatment of opioid addiction, Buprenorphine has proven to be safe and effective when used within the confines of a medication assisted treatment program. As was previously mentioned, the consumption of Buprenorphine prevents the uncomfortable symptoms of withdrawal from arising. Withdrawal occurs as an individual’s body attempts to re-regulate itself to the way that it functioned prior to the introduction of opioids. The chronic abuse of opioids causes the development of tolerance and dependency, which essentially means that the body becomes dependent on the substance in order to continue functioning. As a result, when the substance is then removed from one’s system, it has to re-learn how to exist without the opioids. As the body is learning to regulate to the change in its chemical composition, the physical symptoms that a person experiences can be painful and, at times, even life-threatening. By taking part in a medication assisted treatment program, however, the withdrawal process can be alleviated through the use of medications like Buprenorphine.
Each individual who participates in a medication assisted treatment program will be prescribed medications that best meet their individual needs. When Buprenorphine is prescribed, it not only alleviates the distress that typically accompanies withdrawal, but it also prevents future cravings for opioids from occurring. This helps ensure that the recovery process is successful and that relapse is prevented.
Benefits of Utilizing Buprenorphine within Medication Assisted Treatment
In addition to the benefit of not experiencing withdrawal symptoms and not having to suffer from intense cravings for more opioids, taking Buprenorphine allows individuals to jumpstart their recovery process. Without being tainted by the physical side effects of withdrawal and the overpowering cravings for more opioids, individuals obtain the clarity of mind that allows them to focus on other aspects of recovery.
In medication assisted treatment programs, therapeutic interventions are offered alongside medications so that the emotional aspects of the addictive behaviors are addressed and treated as well as the physical dependency. Individual therapy is one such intervention, and it allows individuals to have a safe and confidential space to process through their recovery process with a counselor, working through any successes and setbacks that may arise along the way. Group therapy is another intervention offered in these programs, and it provides people with the opportunity to meet with other individuals who are facing the same types of struggles that they are. In this setting, discussions that apply to all patients can be had, offering support and encouragement from one person to the next.
Side Effects of Buprenorphine
As is true with the consumption of any medication, there are side effects that have the potential to arise when Buprenorphine is consumed. Examples of such side effects can include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Withdrawal symptoms
- Runny eyes
- Flu-like symptoms
- Upset stomach
Should any of these effects become apparent, patients should report those occurrences with their treatment providers. Immediately ceasing the consumption of this medication is not recommended, as that in and of itself can produce severe side effects. By discussing the situation with one’s treatment provider, however, appropriate interventions and alterations can be made.
It is important to note, however, that by taking Buprenorphine within a medication assisted treatment program, the potential for these effects to arise are monitored on an ongoing basis, ensuring the safety and wellbeing of each individual who consumes the medication. Furthermore, addiction treatment specialists and medical professionals are on-hand to check in with patients and make sure that no adversities are becoming apparent.
Any medication has the potential to elicit side effects, but when taken as part of a medication assisted treatment program, Buprenorphine is safe and beneficial for use in helping individuals overcome their compulsion to continue abusing opioids.