The Benefits of Suboxone Treatment for Opiate Addiction

Suboxone is a type of medication used to treat the symptoms of withdrawal from opioid dependence. Suboxone treatment is typically prescribed as part of a complete rehabilitation regimen that includes psychological counseling. Fewer than 25 percent of patients who are addicted to heroin or another opiate are able to successfully quit “cold turkey.” With the help of this treatment, these patients are able to succeed in abstaining from substance abuse, since the medication works to curb withdrawal side effects and subsequent cravings.

How Does Suboxone Work?

Suboxone is a prescription medicine that combines buprenorphine, a partial opioid agonist, and naloxone, an opioid blocker. Like an opioid, a partial opioid agonist acts on the brain’s opioid receptors. Unlike these drugs, however, buprenorphine does not result in the euphoric feeling the user associates with a “high.” That allows for the prevention of the physical side effects caused by drug withdrawal without the associated pleasurable feelings caused by the abused substance. Naloxone, on the other hand, produces severe withdrawal symptoms when it is crushed or snorted, so it is combined with buprenorphine to discourage the abuse of this treatment regimen.

How Is Suboxone Treatment Dispensed?

Because this is a long-acting medication, it only needs to be taken once a day, either as a 2 mg or 8 mg tablet or a 2 mg or 8 mg film strip that dissolves under the tongue. The filmstrip also includes a serial number to prevent diversion of the medication. Patients shouldn’t drink, eat, or smoke within 30 minutes of their daily dose since this can prevent absorption of the medication. This treatment is not effective for those who chew or dip tobacco.

What Are the Side Effects of this Medication?

Patients typically experience a sense of calm and relaxation, but it sometimes causes less desirable side effects like constipation, insomnia, irritability, or a feeling of jitters or shakiness. Although the inclusion of naloxone reduces the potential for abuse, this substance can still be addictive if it is used without a doctor’s supervision. Those in this type of treatment will be slowly weaned from the medication after the withdrawal period subsides. Using this drug in the long-term can result in drowsiness, confusion, gastrointestinal issues, confusion, anxiety, isolation, and depression. And like heroin addiction, this can lead to financial strain and problems with work and relationships.

How Does Suboxone Treatment Fit into Recovery?

Recovery is the term for returning to a life free of opioid addiction. While Suboxone treatment is a powerful tool in the treatment of addiction, it is not effective alone. Those attempting to overcome opioid addiction should also consider counseling to understand the psychological and behavioral aspects of addiction. Inpatient or outpatient therapy comes in a variety of forms that can help alleviate the psychological mechanisms that led to addiction and treat any underlying mental health conditions that were either caused by or contributed to the abuse of opioids.

Those who are addicted to opioids can visit a doctor specializing in addiction to learn more about the benefits of Suboxone treatment.

Marijuana Addiction – What Every Parent Should Know

Marijuana is highly addictive and it is often called pot, reefer, grass, herb, weed or even Mary Jane. It is a greenish mixture of dried and shredded leaves, seeds, flowers and stems. Most people smoke this mixture by using hand rolled cigarettes, called joints, and some even call it “bongs”. Another favorite method is to make “Blunts” which are prepared by slicing cigars and then replacing the tobacco with marijuana. It is often combined with other drugs such as cocaine. Some addicts also use it to brew tea or sometime consume it, mixed with food.

An individual gets highly addicted by Marijuana, and later this addiction, limits potential. It triggers numerous psychiatric disorders, and individuals suffer from the withdrawal syndrome associated with this drug on stopping consumption. This is a real threat to the younger generation who are in search of instant happiness. Generally, parents are unaware of many teenage habits and they underestimate the threat that marijuana poses to 21st century teens.

Potency has increased many-fold as compared to what it was some decades ago. The drug that is available in the market today is quite different from what was available in the past. Much of this drug is being grown with hydroponics and fertilizers. So it is not the same drug that your uncle Eddie grew in his backyard. It is 6 times stronger than the variety that was available during the 60’s and 70’s. This increased potency regrettably increases the social and health risk and later leads to addiction. Marijuana addiction is inevitable and only detox can save the addict.

Specialists have categorized Marijuana as an addictive drug and documented it as a drug causing withdrawal symptoms when addicts try to break free from this deadly habit. Withdrawal symptom intensity is not as high as that suffered by heroin addicts, but still it is dangerous and as intensified as alcohol detoxing. Parents should know that detox is unpleasant and it could really pose a threat during recovery stages.

Symptoms of Marijuana withdrawal

Considered highly addictive and characterized as compulsive, often uncontrollable.

Tolerance- This is generally marked by the increased intake of marijuana to achieve maximum intoxication, thus diminishing the effect due to over use of the same amount of marijuana.

Insomnia- Addicts lack sufficient sleep.

Irritability- Generally related well to mood swings.

Nausea.

Lack of appetite.

Strong craving that makes the addict uncomfortable, which many individuals cannot pass through during the initial days thus causing high withdrawal symptoms. This in turn forces the individuals to consume more marijuana to reduce the withdrawal symptoms.

Abuse is so strong, that many teens are addicted to it thus making them seek residential treatment. Heavy use increases present and future psychiatric problems leading to depression and anxiety and sometimes cancer.

How to overcome the addiction

Occasional joints don’t cause much damage, but many people get addicted to it. Recreational use generally leads to addiction, and this addiction disrupts daily life. Thousands of kids are undergoing treatment in various rehabilitation centers each year.

It is not unusual for someone to seek professional help, so go ahead and seek help for your child if you see any of the above mentioned symptoms; like it is said, “A stitch in time saves nine” because the sooner the problem is dealt with, the better the ultimate result.

Choose Only the Best Drug Addiction Treatment Center

It is a fact that more than 20 million Americans today need professional help to get rid of alcohol and drug addiction. Most of the times this addiction pertains to some substance abuse, medical drugs abuse or alcohol but the actual problem is, the sufferers never realize that they need help and treatment to get rid of their nasty addictions.

Numerous alcohol and drug addiction treatment centers are spread across all states in US. They include both public and private centers. Most of them offer wide range of services catering to different problems. But sufferers need to first realize and accept that they need help than only they can be benefited from these services.

Treatment programs in these centers are designed keeping in mind the common and general addictions. Before joining any such program try to take suggestion from your doctor. The treatment program should match to your requirement and should address to your specific problem in order for you to benefit from the program effectively.

Different kind of problems requires different kind of treatment and rehab method largely depends on the severity of the problem and the underlying actual cause of the problem. You can even speak with the people who already got treatment so that you can get a clear idea about what you can expect at these centers.

Most of the programs include 5 treatment levels: detoxification, primary care, extended care, partial and out-patient follow-up care. Doctors analyze cases individually and suggest which level fits best for the individual. If the condition is severe and addiction is prolonged than all 5 levels of treatments may be necessary.

Study Identifies Factors Leading to Discontinuation of Treatment for Opioid Addiction

Earlier considered as a scourge specific to military veterans, opioid addiction has today spread to each section of the society. Surprisingly, the crisis has largely engulfed teenagers, women or older adults. Addiction to opioids, including heroin, morphine and prescription pain pills, has led to severe physical and mental health problems among Americans, apart from creating a burgeoning and dangerous black market of illegal drugs on the streets.

Results from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) revealed that of the 20.5 million people aged 12 years or older who were diagnosed with substance use disorders, 2 million were addicted to prescription pain relievers and nearly 591,000 were hooked on heroin.

Getting rid of opioid addiction is tricky due to the involvement of medication. Additionally, opioid addiction recovery treatment requires long-term engagement in therapy for its success, which many fail to follow. Disengagement from treatment has become a norm in people undergoing recovery from an addiction to opioid drugs.

Until recently, a majority of people addicted to prescription pain relievers were treated with buprenorphine. However, a recent study published in the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment has pointed out that many patients undergoing the treatment process tend to give up midway owing to various reasons, such as unemployment, belonging to a particular race or an acute hepatitis C infection.

What causes disengagement from opioid addiction treatment

According to the study by the researchers from the Boston University (BU), individuals with opioid use disorder are more likely to disengage from treatment programs if they are black or Hispanic, unemployed, or have hepatitis C. Buprenorphine – Subutex and Suboxone – is the most widely used drug for the treatment of opioid addiction due to its efficacy in reducing the rates of heroin and prescription opioid use. Additionally, it reduces the chances of “risky behaviors” that are associated with development of co-morbidities such as HIV or viral hepatitis infection.

As part of the study, the researchers evaluated more than 1,200 patients treated at office-based addiction treatment (OBAT) program between 2002 and 2014 to identify the patient-specific factors associated with retention in the treatment program for longer than one year. Factors such as age, gender, race/ethnicity, education level, employment, infection with hepatitis C virus, co-morbid psychiatric conditions, and prior or current use of drugs or alcohol were specifically evaluated.

Highlighting some important disparities in treatment outcomes (especially racial/ethnic), the study observed, “Older age, female, and co-morbid psychiatric diagnosis were associated with greater odds of treatment retention beyond one year, patients who were black or Hispanic, unemployed, and had evidence of hepatitis C viral infection were associated with decreased odds of treatment retention beyond one year.”

The study plays a key role in understanding the potential of opioid agonist buprenorphine to treat opioid addiction at a time when Americans are fighting a tough battle against prescription drug abuse. The study is expected to open newer avenues of treating opioid addiction, apart from encouraging patients to complete the recovery program.

Treating opioid addiction through effective therapeutic interventions

Like any other addiction, opioid abuse is also a brain disease that needs to be treated immediately. Prescriptions for opioid medications written by doctors has resulted in unprecedented level of opioid addiction in the country. While institutions at the federal level are making efforts to address the issue by sharing guidelines on the nature and extent of prescription to physicians, it is important to identify alternate therapeutic interventions that are more effective.