Your Survival Guide On The Way To Tapering Off Suboxone


Suboxone is the brand name used to refer to a prescription medication that is used for the treatment of individuals who are addicted to or have the dependence on the opioid drug.

The drug contains buprenorphine/naloxone and it comes in the form of an oral film. You need to put the drub under your tongue or alternatively between your gums and cheek. The film starts dissolving in your mouth in a bit.

Currently, Suboxone comes in the following four strengths of buprenorphine and naloxone:

  • 2 mg / 0.5 mg
  • 4 mg / 1 mg
  • 8 mg / 2 mg
  • 12 mg / 3 mg

Based on various studies that have been conducted in the past, Suboxone was found to be great for reducing opioid misuse. This drug is widely used for the purpose of keeping people with opioid dependence under treatment over a period as long as 24 weeks.

Note: The performance of this drug can be partly assessed based on the period during which people avail the treatment.

Can you control Suboxone?

Yes, you can control Suboxone, as it’s categorized as a schedule three (III) prescription medication. This also means that Suboxone is a widely accepted medication.

The biggest con of Suboxone is that may become physically or psychologically dependent on it.

In order to regulate the usage of the medication, the government has levied some rules regarding the prescription of Suboxone by doctors as well as how pharmacists dispense it. To know more about the usage, you may contact your doctor or pharmacist directly.

As of now, doctors are allowed to prescribe Suboxone to individuals with a dependency on opioid and that too after received sufficient training through the United States Federal Government.

However, this is not the case always.

An Insight

Just like heroin and some other opioids, there are many risks, withdrawal symptoms, and side effects of Suboxone as well. Abusing the drug is quite similar to jumping straight into a frying pan from the fire. The meaning here is that although it’s a little less hot, you can still get burned eventually.

So why are we interested in this very drug if it has such dangerous side effects? Well, the answer here is quite simple. Suboxone is a prescription medication for people who are addicted to or dependent upon opioid, which contains buprenorphine and naloxone.

In case you don’t know, being a partial opioid agonist, buprenorphine causes the effects similar to opioid but a little milder. It also comes in contact with the same opioid receptors in your brain but does not make you go that high.

In Suboxone, buprenorphine is in combination with naloxone that is more of an opioid antagonist. Its primary function is to block all opioid receptors in the brain, thereby preventing your body from experiencing the effects of opioid.

The reason behind creating a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone was to keep opioid users from abusing Suboxone, as it does not help them go high. Well, it indeed is great news, isn’t it?

Suboxone Side Effects

There are both major and minor side effects of buprenorphine found in Suboxone. The following are some minor ones on the list:

  • Back pain
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Fever or chills
  • Insomnia
  • Painful Urination
  • Runny or stuffy nose

The following are some major side effects on the list:

  • Blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Confusion
  • Drowsiness and fatigue

Withdrawals caused by Suboxone

Despite the major and minor side effects of Suboxone, buprenorphine also causes withdrawals. This is one case when an individual has been taking this drug for a longer period of time and suddenly does not get it anymore. These symptoms are similar to those experienced by an individual stops any other form of opiates.

The process that results in these symptoms is quite simple and just like any other opioids, it also involves buprenorphine interfering with the chemical processes going on within the body and brain.

Once sudden unavailability of the drug, the body starts causing withdrawals right away. And, based on how and what amount of drug you have been taking and for how long as well, the symptoms can be mild to severe.

The following are some common withdrawal symptoms:

  • Insomnia
  • Mood swings
  • Abdominal pain
  • Excessive sweating
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting

Depending upon the severity of the withdrawal symptoms, this mental disorder can worsen more like depression in particular. There have been times when these withdrawal symptoms have become overwhelming leading to the patient spiraling into buprenorphine abuse and high dependency.

The use of Suboxone for opioid addiction treatment is quite debatable, though; the fact of the matter is that thousands of people have overcome their addiction using Suboxone, naloxone being the key ingredient.

Another fact associated with this issue is that Suboxone does have a dark side, which refers to further addiction that turns out to be a major recovery hurdle.

Pharmaceutical Remedies

Based on multiple studies, it was found that people managed to taper with the support of some medications prescribed by their doctor, especially to treat the withdrawal symptoms. It is always recommended that patients must speak to their doctors and other addiction professionals around to seek help regarding the use of the right medication.

Holistic Remedies

There is a range of holistic remedies that can really help with the tapering process. Turns out Yoga, Meditation and Healthy eating habit have worked for them.

Over the years, various studies have verified the benefits of yoga for the improvement of life quality for those who are withdrawing from opioids because of the fact that it alleviates insomnia, nausea, anxiety, and restless legs.

Some other recommendations include vitamins and supplements, such as DLPA, L-Tyrosine, Omega 3 Fish Oil, Vitamin C, and ashwagandha.

The Bottom Line!


Irrespective of your current stage in terms of this addiction, you must continue your research and make sure you understand why you started your journey on the path of overcoming the addiction and whether you still want to beat it.