At Direct2Recovery, we talk a lot about Suboxone. We also talk a lot about Buprenorphine. But what about other medications that we utilize to help our patients on their road to recovery? One of the big ones is Sublocade®. So today, we wanted to go over what Sublocade® is, Sublocade® withdrawal, and much more.
What is Sublocade?
Sublocade® is an injectable medication used to treat opioid addiction. It is a form of slow releasing Buprenorphine, meaning it will stay in your system for up to a month. It releases the medication directly into your system to help relieve withdrawal symptoms and cravings.
Sublocade® does not contain Naloxone, meaning it does not provide the same protection against opioid overdose as Suboxone does. It also does not block the effects of opioids.
So why take it? Sublocade® isn’t typically the first medication introduced to a patient during their recovery. It’s normally after they have tried and found success with other options, because Sublocade is only a small part of a successful medicine assisted treatment program.
Additionally, as with any slow release medications, you may experience minor withdrawal symptoms when it’s time to stop taking it.
What Is Withdrawal?
Withdrawal is the combination of the physical and mental effects that a person experiences after they stop using or reduce their intake of something they’re addicted to. It can happen with anything, from caffeine, to exercise, to sugar, and to drugs. It’s more common than everyone realizes.
It’s famously known to go in hand with substance use, however. If you have been using a substance with a high potential for dependency and you stop suddenly or abruptly or you cut down your use drastically, you can experience a variety of withdrawal symptoms. The intensity and duration of these withdrawal symptoms can vary widely, depending on the type of drug and your biological make-up.
Withdrawal can be unpleasant and potentially dangerous in some cases. For this reason, you should always talk to your doctor before stopping or reducing your use of a substance. A rehabilitation clinic will use medication, such as Sublocade® to reduce these symptoms.
What Causes Withdrawal?
Your body doesn’t like change. It works constantly to maintain a state of balance known as
homeostasis. Think of it like Goldie Locks — this feels too hot, this feels too cold, but homeostasis is what feels just right.
Addiction changes what your body thinks is “just right.” Opioids, for example, literally change your brain chemistry to trick your brain into thinking that you need opioids to achieve “just right.” They make your brain feel good, while causing a lot of damage along the way.
When you regularly take opioids for an extended period of time, your body may build a tolerance and dependence on that substance. This tolerance means that you will need to take more opioids to achieve “just right.” The more you take, the higher your tolerance. It’s a vicious cycle that’s hard to break.
Withdrawal happens when you do break that cycle. When you stop, your body is thrown off balance and into the “too hot” or “too cold” territory. You’ll feel physical, emotional, and mental symptoms, as well as intense cravings.
Withdrawal symptoms are often the opposite of the effects of the substance. So, what about Sublocade® withdrawal?
What Can You Expect with Sublocade® Withdrawal?
If you stop taking Sublocade®, you could have opioid withdrawal symptoms such as:
- Muscle Aches
- Hot flashes
- Runny nose
- Watery eyes
These symptoms may start weeks to months after your last dose of Sublocade®. Longer acting medications usually come with longer lasting withdrawal symptoms. Symptoms subside, on average, in less than a month.
Why Take Sublocade®?
Because it works. Taking your life back from opioid addiction is incredibly difficult. Only 10% of users recover without help. That’s why Direct2Recovery uses MAT to give you the best odds at recovering. We offer fully remote integrated addiction care and 24-hour access to teleproviders, telecounseling, monitored in-home drug testing, and more.
Up to 50% of patients recover from addiction with a combination of Direct2Recovery’s MAT and counseling. On top of that? You can recover from the comfort of your own home through telemedicine. Get easy 24-hour remote access to physicians and skip the clinic for everything, including drug screenings.
Give us a call or reach out online. We’ll be happy to help you.