Breaking an addiction to heroin is never easy. However, a medication called suboxone, which is an opiate analogue, has made addiction treatment easier for many patients in recent years. This medication binds to opiate receptors without giving you a true "high" feeling while working to thwart the symptoms of withdrawal that make recovery so unpleasant. Suboxone can be a great solution if you're struggling to break free from heroin, but there are a few tips you should definitely follow when using it.
1. Get the medication from a doctor.
Buying suboxone "on the street" or from unlicensed vendors on the internet is not a smart choice. There is no way to know the medication you're getting is pure or safe; plus, you need to discuss dosing with a doctor before you begin using suboxone. Even if you have never told a medical professional about your addiction, now is the time to seek real, professional help. Meet with an addiction counselor; if that counselor is not licensed to prescribe suboxone themselves, then they will refer you to someone who is.
2. Don't use suboxone as a substitute for mental health treatment.
For most heroin addicts, heroin use is a sign of another mental health problem such as depression, bipolar disorder, or PTSD. If you want to fully recover, then you will need to address this underlying problem with the guidance of a therapist. Suboxone will help with the physical symptoms of your addiction, but it is not meant to be a substitute for this mental and emotional work. Use suboxone and therapy together for best results.
3. Stick to the recommended dose.
Your doctor will tell you how much suboxone to use. Many patients are tempted to take more in an attempt to feel high or to ward off the mild withdrawal symptoms they're experiencing in spite of the medication. This is a bad idea, as side effects become more likely at higher doses. Your doctor recommended the dose they did for a reason. Do not adjust the dose without checking with your doctor. This advice applies when you are first using suboxone, and also later on when your doctor starts cutting back your dose.
Using suboxone can make recovery easier for some people. There are many intricacies involved, however, so keep the tips above in mind and reach out to your doctor with any questions. To learn more about this substance, contact a service like Neurodiagnostics and Therapeutics, PLLC.