Suboxone Medication Assisted Therapy Guide

Being in drug rehab treatment allows you to receive the medical and mental health treatment you need and deserve to get you off suboxone. Detoxing remains your first step to freedom from drugs during rehab. Then the central portion of your treatment plan can begin. You’ll receive both individual and group counseling to give you an idea of why you may be on drugs in the first place. You’ll also find great benefit from the experience of others with similar issues, and gain tips for dealing with cravings and life in general during these meetings. You’ll have a safe place to learn to remake your life without the influence of drugs. And you’ll have the chance to learn to build yourself a positive life with a sober living experience and treatment aftercare.

Drug withdrawal isn’t easy. But you did the work to get off opioids. You can do what it takes to quit taking suboxone, too. The right drug rehab center has the staff and treatment means to help you live a life without harmful drugs. Such a drug rehab center can also support you with the tools you need to stay clean and sober.

Obtain An Evaluation

In order for drug or alcohol abuse treatment to have a better chance of success, the recovery program should fit the patient. That means being assessed by a recovery specialist at a reputable facility that has experience treating that type of addiction. The decision to choose residential or outpatient treatment should take into consideration:

  • The length and severity of drug use
  • Outside obligations like work, school, or children
  • The existence and type of support network, such as family and friends
  • The stability of the patient’s life circumstances, such as employment and housing
  • The patient’s mindset and determination to stop using
  • Finances and health care coverage

If all or most of those factors are favorable, outpatient treatment has a good chance of success. There’s also the possibility of combining medically supervised intervention at the beginning and a transition to outpatient treatment once the patient is stabilized. Any of these options is preferable to no treatment at all.

How to Complete Suboxone Outpatient Treatment Successfully

The success or failure of any program lies in part with the determination of the patient to get clean, but that isn’t the only factor. It also takes a well-rounded program that involves counseling, education, and support. Because one dose of Suboxone works for a full 24 hours, it makes an excellent addition to an outpatient program when medical intervention is warranted.

Outpatient opioid treatment with Suboxone as a component is usually referred to as Intensive Outpatient Treatment (IOP). This allows detox and rehabilitation to occur in stages, under the supervision of a doctor, while keeping the patient in the community. The use of 2 – 4mg strips rather than pills reduces the potential for abuse while eliminating painful withdrawal symptoms. Because one dose last for 24 hours, there’s no need for a prescription. Usually, an IOP is conducted in five phases:

  • Detox and Suboxone Induction – Lasts for about three days, during which the patient will stop using and Suboxone will be introduced to manage the initial withdrawal symptoms.\
  • Suboxone Intensive Outpatient (SIOP) – This two-week phase involves addiction education and continued use of Suboxone to manage cravings.
  • Intensive Outpatient (IOP) – Involves a heavier reliance on education with the focus on learning coping skills, identifying triggers, and integrating back into the ‘real world’ while remaining drug-free. This phases lasts about eight weeks.
  • Continuing Care/Relapse Prevention – During this phase, the patient will become involved in group therapy sessions and eventually weened off of Suboxone. There is no set time limit.
  • Aftercare – This phase is for those with severe or long-term use who must continue to use Suboxone under doctor supervision to prevent relapse after completing the initial program.

How to Taper Off of Your Medication Safely

The first thing you should know about weaning off of Suboxone is that the ideal process is different for everyone. The amount of medication that you need to take depends upon factors such as how long you have been using the medication along with your body type and metabolism. For this reason, it is best to undergo a professional assessment that provides you with the proper tapering schedule to fit your needs.

You can taper off of Suboxone in our outpatient treatment program that allows you to continue to manage your normal daily responsibilities such as working and caring for your family. Your tapering schedule will involve gradual dose reductions that slowly help you to stop using the medication. For some people, a dose reduction may occur daily while others may need to decrease their dosage after several days have passed between each change. Try to keep in mind that slow and steady changes help you to stabilize physically and mentally so that you do not experience uncomfortable symptoms that could lead to a relapse.

Creating a New Relapse Prevention Plan

When your goal is to completely wean off of Suboxone, you need to establish a new relapse prevention plan to help you avoid returning back to your old habits of opioid use. In most cases, you should already be using Suboxone in conjunction with strategies such as attending group and individual counseling to address the underlying reasons for your addiction. However, you may have lapsed in your attendance at these sessions, or you may be far enough along in your recovery that you no longer feel that going to daily counseling sessions is necessary. Since weaning off Suboxone represents a major change in your life, it helps to return to the strategies that you used in your earlier treatment plan for opioid addiction. Alternatively, you may want to explore new options such as outpatient therapy that helps you to overcome the new challenges that arise in your life of sobriety.

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