Suboxone contains two medications, buprenorphine and naloxone. These medications treat addictions to opioids such as heroin, codeine, morphine, fentanyl, oxycodone, and hydrocodone.
The two drugs work together to:
In addition to helping you step away from opioids, Suboxone has another great benefit: You can detox and recover without going to an in-patient clinic. Dr. Balasubramanian administers your first dose, then closely monitors your health while you keep taking the medication at home.
Federal guidelines require Suboxone to be administered through a program called medication-assisted treatment (MAT). MAT combines medications such as Suboxone with counseling and behavioral therapy.
Suboxone treats the physical addiction, while counseling helps you identify and manage the emotions, habits, thoughts, and life challenges that tempt you to relapse. This whole-person approach is proven to have greater success, helping patients maintain a long-lasting recovery.
Your Suboxone treatment goes through three phases:
You take your first dose in the office while you're in the early stage of withdrawal. After your initial dose, you take one dose daily at home. Dr. Balasubramanian adjusts your dose as needed to prevent cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
Dr. Balasubramanian prescribes enough Suboxone to carry you until your next appointment. Regular appointments are essential for monitoring your progress and making sure you have the right dose.
This phase begins after you no longer use opioids, and your cravings have stopped. You keep taking Suboxone, but Dr. Balasubramanian can adjust your dose to match your needs. Most patients start counseling during the stabilization phase.
During this phase, you stay on the same dose of Suboxone for as long as needed to be sure your withdrawal symptoms and craving don't return. Once you're stable, Dr. Balasubramanian can slowly taper down the Suboxone.
At this point, he may prescribe a different medication to continue supporting your recovery. And if your cravings return, he can restart Suboxone. You can safely take these medications indefinitely, as long as you're monitored by Dr. Balasubramanian.
If you need help with an opioid dependence, call Anand Balasubramanian, MD, PA, or request an appointment online today.