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Suboxone has been found to have various benefits over other similar medications—this is why it’s become increasingly popular in the medical industry. Treatment facilities and healthcare professionals alike make use of suboxone for the treatment of certain addictions.
However, while this drug is very effective in terms of fighting opiate withdrawal symptoms, it is also known for its own addictive qualities. In fact, some people pass this off as an illegal drug and sell it like one. For this reason, suboxone is still heavily regulated despite its popularity.
It is a known fact that even prescription medications can be somewhat dangerous if misused. Many of them can cause addiction and dependence.
And while this does not take away from their medical uses and benefits, it still highlights how careful we should be when it comes to using these drugs.
Suboxone mimics some of the effects of common opiates, but the question is: is suboxone an opiate itself? We all know that opiates and opioids are addictive, so why would medical professionals prescribe an opiate for opiate addiction treatment? Let’s take a closer look.
Is Suboxone an Opiate?
First things first: what exactly is suboxone? This substance is a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone. Both of these medications are used to prevent withdrawal symptoms for those who are recovering from opiate addiction. Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist, while naloxone is an opiate antagonist. The resulting combination, suboxone, is a potent substance that provides both effects at once.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, buprenorphine produces effects like euphoria, but it is comparatively weaker than those associated with other opiates.
Suboxone can technically be considered an opiate, considering one of its active ingredients, naloxone, is one. And true enough, suboxone can be just as addictive and dangerous as other opiates, if someone abuses it.
Common side effects of suboxone abuse include nausea, vomiting, headache, insomnia, constipation, and blurred vision.
Why Are Opiates Abused?
Opiates and opioids, also known as narcotics, are primarily used to relieve moderate to severe pain. But because of their addictive potential, they have to be taken exactly as prescribed. What makes these substances addictive is the fact that they produce a euphoric high.
When taken, narcotics tend to create relaxing sensations for the user, giving them a feel-good experience. That’s what makes them habit-forming.
But like we said earlier, the effects of suboxone are much weaker than regular opiates, which is why it would take large doses to become addicted. People who are attempting to get high are likely to take more suboxone than they are supposed to. This dramatically increases the risk of getting addicted.
These prescription medications have their benefits, no doubt. But some people will still abuse them for the sake of recreation.
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What Are the Effects of Opioid Abuse?
Just like any other opiate, suboxone can cause tolerance, dependence, and addiction. If a person becomes dependent, this means they won’t be able to quit the drug without experiencing withdrawal. If a person abruptly quits suboxone, the withdrawal symptoms and intense cravings will only cause them to relapse.
Opiate withdrawal is often associated with insomnia, anxiety, agitation, muscle aches, vomiting, and dilated pupils. Luckily, suboxone withdrawal is not life-threatening.
The addicted individual will still need medical assistance in order to recover. A combination of medical detox and behavioral therapy can finally break their addictive habits. It may take a while, but recovery is possible.
It seems ironic that a drug that helps against addiction can also cause addiction. But at the end of the day, it’s not the drug that gets people addicted: it’s their actions and decisions. However, if a person gets addicted, then it may already be out of their control.
Look for an addiction treatment facility near you today!