When your body is used to having something in its system, it often expects to continue getting it. Take sugar for example. If you have a sweet tooth and can’t go a day without a treat, that’s likely because your body is accustomed to the amount of sugar each day. If you don’t have it, you develop cravings, right? And after a day or so without eating a cookie, ice cream, or candy of your choice, your cravings get worse and worse. That’s because you’re experiencing withdrawal symptoms from sugar.
The same can happen when you’re taking medications, drugs, or Suboxone. And we hear you — you’re taking Suboxone to reduce your cravings for drugs, so why would that lead to withdrawal? Well, Suboxone withdrawal is a very real thing and manageable if you know what to expect.
What is Suboxone?
Suboxone is a prescription drug used to help relieve cravings and block the effects of opioids. It’s used in medicine assisted treatment (MAT), which is offered in clinics like Direct2Recovery. The medication contains buprenorphine and naloxone, which is how it gets its effects.
Suboxone Withdrawal Symptoms
Your body will start getting used to taking this medication and will get used to having it in its system. Thankfully, Suboxone withdrawal is like trying to cut sweets out of your diet; annoying and difficult, but not harmful.
Suboxone withdrawal can last for as long as a month, and symptoms can include:
- Muscle aches
- Digestive distress
- Difficulty concentrating
Withdrawal symptoms are usually dependent on how long you’ve been taking Suboxone and how much you’ve been taking per dose — the longer you’ve been using it and the higher the dosage, the longer you can expect to feel withdrawal symptoms.
Physical symptoms will end in about a month or less, but some psychological dependencies can still linger after that.
Don’t worry! You won’t be feeling withdrawal for the entire month! The side effects start strong and lessen over time. With Suboxone withdrawal, the worst symptoms are generally over within a 72 hour period.
In the first week, most physical side effects are dull and are normally general aches or pains — you may not even notice them or associate them with withdrawal at all! The biggest side effect in this period is usually insomnia (the inability to sleep) and mood swings.
During the second week off of Suboxone, you can expect to feel a little down in the dumps as your brain works to readjust its normal chemical levels. In other words, expect to feel a little depressed. This is completely normal and will subside in time.
The most delicate time for Suboxone withdrawal is normal around the one month mark. This is where users have the most potential for relapse, as symptoms such as depression and cravings are still prevalent.
Like any other addictive substance, Suboxone withdrawal can last several months.
How to Handle Withdrawal Symptoms
Some clinics, like Direct2Recovery, offer counseling with their MAT. This counseling will provide advice on how to deal with withdrawal and resources to better combat it.
There are things you can do at home to help your body and brain cope too.
You can exercise regularly to produce endorphins so you start feeling better. Exercise can also help reduce stress, improve tension, help you sleep better, and enhance your self-esteem.
Studies published by the journal Frontiers in Psychology show that exercise can help to minimize relapse and decrease drug use and cravings as well. It can be as simple as going for a walk, run, bike ride, going for a swim, or going to the gym.
The second thing you can do is get on a good diet. Food that is high in protein and rich in essential vitamins and minerals will help re-balance the chemicals in your brain and will help your body recover. This is because drugs, even those designed to help you, can deplete the body of vital nutrients.
Find medications to help. Yes, there are medications to help ease your way through the withdrawal symptoms. These are typically prescribed for a week and can include medications for muscle spasms, insomnia, and diarrhea.
Finally, keeping up with friends, family, and hobbies will help distract you from everything and will provide you with emotional support.
Ready to Try Suboxone?
Although withdrawal can seem scary, suboxone is designed to help you or a loved one. Its primary function is to stop drug abuse by reducing your cravings and blocking the effects of narcotics/opioids. Combining Suboxone with counseling is proven to help beat addiction:
- There is a 10% recovery rate for addicting without outside help
- 25% of users recover with Suboxone alone
- 50% recover with MAT and counseling
Get the help you or your loved ones deserve so they can take back their life from addiction. Contact us today and let Direct2Recovery help you heal.