How To Get Into A Suboxone Program – Suboxone Information

Proper administration of Suboxone tablets under tounge for sublingual delivery

Suboxone information is gone over in great detail including: What it is, where it comes from, it’s uses, and my personal experience with it. I also tell you how to get into a Suboxone program.

Suboxone is a brand name for Buprenorphine and Naloxone made by the British pharmaceutical company Reckitt Benckiser.  The other related product they make is Subutex.

So, what is Buprenorphine?

Buprenorphine is what they call a partial opiate agonist.  The brain has different receptors that are made to receive a variety of signals.  Mu opiate receptors, kappa opiate receptors,  ORL1/nociceptin opiate receptors, and-delta opioid receptors are the ones that Buprenorphine does all of it’s business with.

buprenorphine Suboxone information

This chart simplifies what I just tried to describe.

It is especially “sticky” to the Mu and kappa receptors. Now, this is where we can most effectively explain how it all works. In the Mu receptor, Buprenorphine acts as a partial agonist. That means that it is only getting that receptor a little bit “high”. In the ORL1/nociceptin and the delta receptors, it is getting them a little bit high and all the way high.  Finally, in the kappa receptor it’s acting as a competitive antagonist.  Antagonist means that it’s not getting it “high” at all.  Remember when I said that Buprenorphine was especially “sticky” to the Mu and kappa receptors?  Well that is the reason Suboxone works so well as a partial opiate agonist. I’s telling the brain to do two opposite things.  Therefore we get the addict to feel comfortable but without the possibility of getting loaded or too high.  This is why Suboxone is considered fairly safe and very effective to use on an outpatient basis with little supervision.

What is Naloxone?

Naloxone is an opiate antagonist.  That means it blocks the opiate receptors and will not let anything in. This is where we can define the difference between  Suboxone and Subutex.  Suboxone has Naloxone it to prevent abuse.  Many addicts will try to buck the system and use their prescribed drugs in a different way than directed.  A common practice is to crush up pain killers, mix them in water, and inject them intravenously. This gives a more potent feeling or rush.  Try doing that with Suboxone and you will regret it.  The Naloxone will put you into full withdrawal.  It will be very painful!

What is the difference between Suboxone and Subutex?

They are both basically the same.  Both are a tablet of Buprenorphine.  The only difference between the two is that Subutex does not have any Naloxone in it.  That makes it more likely to be abused and it’s considered to be not as safe.  Some patients prefer Subutex because Naloxone can have slight side effects such as: headaches, change in mood,  increased sweating,  nausea, nervousness,  restlessness,  trembling, and vomiting.  Remember, everyone is different and will react in unique ways to most medications.


How To Get Into A Suboxone Program

I have a pretty detailed scenario towards the middle of my Getting Help page, but I want to get into this topic a little deeper.  First of all, I wanted to mention that I do not work for Reckitt Benckiser, nor am I getting paid to promote them. I have a few adds here or there, but I wanted to give out this information because it’s how I turned my life around.  Maybe you know some one or you yourself needs a way out.  This is the best knowledge from my personal experience  that I have to share with all of you.   Now that I got the disclaimer out of the way, lets learn about how to get into an out patient Suboxone program.

It’s not the only way to get clean In fact, many folks out there would like to imply that you’re cheating . Well I don’t agree with them on that, but I do agree that this kind of therapy is replacing one addiction with another very similar in nature.  You have got to realize that from the beginning and go over the best route to take with your doctor.  I’m not saying that this is a bad or regretful way to get rehabilitated either. Just know what your getting yourself into, have a plan of action, and FOLLOW IT!  Some doctors give Suboxone to you for a week while tapering down every day.  I used that method and it worked.  In my case, I did not follow up with therapy and relapsed in a few days time.  Other doctors will put you on a longer term maintenance program with mandatory group meetings and Narcotics Anonymous  meetings. It could be for 6 months or 2 years.  What you and your health care professional decide is up to you.

Fist and foremost, you’ve got to find suboxone doctors near you. Click on that link I just gave you and follow along until you get to the Suboxone doctor locator at the end of the post.  Click on that link and go to the page and follow the directions.  In about 2 minuets you should have a great list from doctors nearby.

After you’ve got the list of doctors, its time to start researching.  Go ahead and start calling the Docs on the list.  Don’t make any appointments, just call to find out what their policies are.  Do they except insurance?   What kind?  Do they except Medicaid?  If they refuse to accept insurance for suboxone patients, and many will, how much is an office visit?  Is it cash or is a check OK?  Most office visits should be no higher than $150.  Also, pay attention to how pleasant the receptionist is.  This may not seem important right now, but down the road it makes a big difference.  Many doctors treat Suboxone patients as a “cash cow”, so to speak.  They do not care about you, and will in some cases actually rip you off.  Your doctor should be understanding and ask you a lot of questions about  how you handle life situations, or try to get to the bottom of any mental conditions that may have caused you to medicate yourself.  This is really important for recovery.  I found out that I had a Anxiety disorder and medium depression throughout my life.  That is one of the main reasons why I felt compelled to use heroin and alcohol.  I was prescribed Celexa for this, and it really did help me.

I found a great doctor… Now what?Suboxone Program

Once you’ve found that perfect doctor, it’s time to get the fist appointment set up.  If this doc is any good, he or she will get you in for a consultation as soon as possible.  You should ask  the receptionist setting up the first visit what to expect from the initial visit.  Ask what will be happening to you.  Are you going to be inducted that day, or will it take more than one visit?  This is important because you’ll need to plan ahead as far as your last opiate use.  Induction is the process of getting your fist dose of Suboxone or Subutex.  Some doctors give it to you in the office to see how you react. Others will just write the script and send you to the pharmacy.  You will be drug tested.  You will not get anything if you come in high!  You must come into the fist visit in a medium state of withdrawal!  No opiate use for at least 12 hours before you come in.  This how the physician will gauge how much you need as well as asking about what your daily drug use consists of.  Inducing Suboxone Less than 12 hours from opiate use can cause withdrawal!  Be honest!  Now you’re on the way to recovery.

Meetings, Meetings, And Therapy

Now that you are hooked up with the medication to stabilize your life, It’s time to find out what got you into the destructive path of opiate addiction.  I’ve just given you all of the Suboxone information that you need, but in order to get into any Suboxone program, you’ve got to go to group therapy at least once a month.  It is a necessary component to recovering successfully.  You will also be asked to attend Narcotics Anonymous (NA) and/or Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) several times  per week/month.   These two groups are not for everyone!  I actually had a problem going and decided not to continue.  If that is the case, I recommend seeing a one on one psychologist that specializes in cognitive therapy weekly.  This will get to the bottom of your issues and help you deal with triggers and instances where poor decision making have led to drug use.  It helped me in so many ways.

Remember, Suboxone  is not a magic pill that cures you with no effort on your part.  It is a process and you need to work towards your sobriety.  Overtime it becomes easier.  It’s also important to remember that outpatient treatment is not the only route to take.  Some people need to go to a live in facility. I will discuss this in a later article.  Keep your chin up and stay positive!

 

I really hope this suboxone information has helped you!

It might be a good fit for your recovery!


13 thoughts on “How To Get Into A Suboxone Program – Suboxone Information

  1. jan

    hi
    my boyfriend has tried 2 times to get off the oxycotin the first time he did it cold turkey and within 1year was back on again he tried again in oct 2010
    and managaed to stay clean for 2 months hes back on them again and i just dont no what to do he says he realy wants off is there any help here in toronto. actually we live in calaedon ontario.
    help

    1. admin Post author

      Well I certainly congratulate your boyfriend for going cold turkey the first time. It is not an easy thing to do. I do understand your situation very well. The fact that he did it cold turkey the first time says that he is a strong person so I would not underestimate his will power. The problem is People, Places, and Things. This is what will cause a large percent of relapse in my opinion. I’ll send you some more info on what to do where you are at.

      Stay strong!

  2. Jon

    Hi, I was on the suboxone program for almost two years, it worked wonders for me and got me to a point where I was happy with my life again. I thought I would be better off “totally clean”, and stopped taking suboxone. After less than a month off of suboxone a was using again. It has been 6 months now, and for the last 5 have been using self acquired methadone once a day instead. I’m getting sick of the methadone, it doesn’t work like suboxone and I end up increasing my dose. This morning I got some suboxone strips and am going to use these to induce but I need advice on getting BACK into a program, the main reason I stopped when I did was my doctor moved out of state. I can’t do inpatient because of school and work and am having a hard time getting in to see a psychiatrist. Please help!

  3. Dustin

    I started an outpatient program in August 2010 and was doing great until I lost my job of 6 years in November. Worried that I could not afford paying for office visits and retail cash prices at the pharmacy, I skipped my December appointment without notifying my Doctor. I’ve spent the last 4 months in alternating intervals of relapse, withdrawl, and Suboxone use via obtaining them on the street. I just had my first appointment today with this same Doctor I bailed on last December. I’ve not used anything other than Suboxone for the last 2-3 weeks. I walked out of today’s appointment with a prescription for my 30-day supply. I do not have Medicaid or any health insurance at this time. Cash prices at the pharmacy are only about 20% cheaper than street and considering the $100 per office visit cost, I’m afraid that there is little to no financial benefit for obtaining my medicine through legitimate legal means. Money is extremely tight right now as I’m still looking for a job. Are there any prescription cost assistance programs for which I may be eligible ? I want to do things the right way, just finding it very hard to afford it.

    1. admin Post author

      Sorry to hear about the trouble that you’ve been going through. I don’t know of any programs off hand, but I will send you an email of anything that turns up… There has got to be something out there. Just remember that 20% might not seem like a lot now, but when you’re in between fixes and sick on the couch, I think it’s a pretty good deal. The cost can be overwhelming at times, but then again, My habits cost me and my family hundreds of thousands of dollars in the end. Just try as hard as you can and keep looking! I will definitely try and help you if I find anything.

  4. Tami

    Ive been on suboxone now for 2 years and it has gave my life back. Now i feel good,not high,but good and like my old self. I do have a problem with the cost as i have no insurance. I also have severe anxiety disorder which is why i self medicated with hydros ,percs, and any other pain pill i could find in the first place. The suboxone helps with all the anxiety and depression issues( somewhat mild depression). So what do you think about long-term use, my doctor says it is better to stay on sub,rather than to get off and take 1 or 2 things for anxiety/depression. I agree just want some more opinions!!
    Tami

    1. admin Post author

      Hey Tami, I also took suboxone for a few years. The only thing that I can say is that if and when you do come off of it, Do so SLOWLY! I also was diagnosed with an Anxiety disorder as well. That’s why I self medicated with Heroin and alcohol. Then I found that using crack at the same time made me feel even better. Very dangerous!

      In my opinion, your doctor has a point, although it helps to have medicaid. When I was prescribed 60 pills per month it only cost me $4! My doctor told me that using Suboxone long term has a potential to weaken your teeth. So take care of them!

  5. Lisa Ward

    I’ve been on Suboxone for over 2 years. I first started taking it to get of narcotic pain medication. I was in a bad accident a many years ago and my right knee got busted up pretty bad. For several years after the accident I didn’t take any medication for the pain because it didn’t hurt that bad. In 2004 I started having major problems with my knee. Since then I’ve had 4 surgeries on my knee. I was put on Loratab for pain. I got sick and tired of having to take medication all the time and the meds weren’t really helping anymore. I found out about Suboxone and found a doctor on http://www.naabt.org. I started out on 3 8mg/2mg tabs a day. By April of 2010 I was down to taking 2 2mg/0.5mg a day then suddenly my knee started giving out on me. The pain was almost unbearable. My doctor sent me to have a new MRI done and X-rays. When I went back to the doctor he basically said I was screwed(he didn’t say that literally) but he as well said that. That say he put me back up to 3 8mg/2mg Suboxone a day. I didn’t know Suboxone could help with pain but it does. Like, all pain meds it doesn’t take all the pain away but helps. He sent me to see an orthopedic. The orthopedic said the only thing that would help me at this point was a knee replacement. But my insurance wouldn’t cover it because I was told I was to young. Since knee replacements only last about 10 years I was denied the surgery. My doctor and the orthopedic decided since I was already on Suboxone to just keep me on Suboxone for the pain then try to take me off of it and put on something else. Then in July of 2010 my insurance got cancelled. I had no idea what to do. I went online and found that the makers of Suboxone have a program called “Here to Help”. I called them and they sent me an application. All I had to do was take the application to my doctor and have him fill it out and give them a copy of my last “Social Sercurtiy Statement” ( The Social Sercurity Statement everyone gets every year before ther birthday). Actually it was a very easy process. I got the application on 8/16/2010 and went to my doctor ion 8/18/2010 and he filled it out. My doctor faxed the appication to the “Here to Help” program for me right then and there. Less then 2 hours later I got a call from a patient coordinator at the “Here to Help” program. I was approved that fast. She gave me all the information I needed to get my perscription filled that day. A few days later I got a card in the mail. All drug store except it. So, for the last year I’ve gotten my Suboxone free every month. What I didn’t know was that the program only pays for your Suboxone for 12 months exactly. As of 8/18/2011 my 12 month period ended. Now, I have no idea what to do. I can’t afford to pay for the Suboxone. It’s just way to expensive. If I had of known that it only paid for 12 months I would have started detoxing off on it. I went 2 1/2 weeks without Suboxone when my insurance was first cancelled. I was in severe withdrawl and it only got worse. After the first week of not having any Suboxone I tried to take some Loratabs. The Loratabs didn’t help one bit. I was at the pont where I just wanted to die that’s how bad coming off Suboxone is. I know it’s said that it easier to come off of then other opiates but that is not true. Finally, when I got approved for the “Here to Help” program I took 1 8mg/2mg Suboxone and within the hour all my withdrawl symptoms went away. The program is a good program but if you can’t afford to pay for your Suboxone after the 12 months are up then you’re basically screwed. A doctor can only have 3 patients at a time in the program. I was his first patient ever to join. He didn’t even know about the program. My doctor’s visits are only $75.00 a month but there is no way I can afford to pay cash for my Suboxone. I’m scared and terrified right now. I only have a few days worth of Suboxone left. I can’t get approved for medicaid because in Georgia the only way you can get medicaid is if you have a child under 18 and meet there finaical guidelines or if you get approve for short or long term disability. I’ve called and got information on how to go about getting short or long term disability but the thing is that it could take up to 6 months just to process my application and then it could take years to get approved. I don’t have that kind of time. If anyone on here knows of any other programs that’ll help pay for Suboxone I’d appreciate the feedback. My advice to anyone on here that is on Suboxone is that if you can’t afford to pay for it then get off of it ASAP. Try to get approved in the “Here to Help” program and get detoxed in that 12 month period. If I had of known ahead of time I would have done that exactly. Suboxone is a great medication and it has really helped me. It doesn’t make you feel drugged up. It made me feel normal and it did help with the pain. But now I’m back at square one. I’ve become dependent of Suboxone. I got on it to get off Loratabs then ended up using it for pain. I have no idea what to do. I hope my informations helps some of you out there and if anyone has any advice for me I’d appreciate it.

    1. admin Post author

      Hi Lisa, I feel your pain.. long term Suboxone use is difficult to come off of. The rule is; taper off as slow as possible. I literally cut 2mg strips into 4ths. That was easier. After that my doctor gave me ultram to take for a few weeks. That seemed to help make the transition. I was lucky to get medicaid. (helped so much!)

      Good Luck,
      Mike

  6. Laurette Conklin

    Hi website owner! This is isn’t spam! By approving this comment you helpa thousands of people. Think about it. We are a group created exclusively to help people that is lookingfor help, and people who suffer about this problematic. We need to join forces to help people around the world. In 1953 Narcotics Anonymous, originally called AA/NA, was founded in California by Jimmy Kinnon and others. Differing from its predecessors, NA formed fellowship of mutually supporting groups. Founding members, most of whom were from A.A., debated and established bylaws of the organization. On September 14, 1953, AA authorized NA to use of AA’s s steps and traditions on the condition that they stopped using the AA name, causing the organization to call itself Narcotics Anonymous. In 1954, the first NA publication was printed, called the “Little Brown Book”. It contained the 12 steps, and early drafts of several pieces that would later be included in subsequent literature.

  7. shooting 4normal

    HELP WITH INTERNAL ITCH IN CHEST & BACK
    I have been on Sub’s/strips style for 7 weeks now. Started off on 8mg x 3 daily for a total of 24mg. I took 3 a day for approx 1 week. I then went to 16mg for two weeks. 8 mg for 2 weeks. 4mg for 2 weeks. I am now taking 2mg per day. Like most I am cutting the strips myself. I hope to cut to 1 mg for 2 weeks and then try quitting altogether. My doctor did express that it doesn’t make much sense to drop below 4mg as I would experience withdrawals in dropping to the 4mg dose and would experience them again for every drop in dosage thereafter. He recommended I just quit after a week or two of 4mg. Go cold turkey and get it over. He doesn’t seem to believe that I will experience terrible withdrawal symptoms. After reading a few blogs I thought it would be best to get to a lower dose. I was on opiates for nearly 8 years. Two years prior to detox I was placed on morphine sulphate. A very large dose from what I was told by others in detox – 750mg per day. Along with the opiates I was prescribed 1mg of Xanax and 20mg of Valium. Not having a great deal of knowledge about drug usage I elected to stop all 3 drugs cold turkey. Holy cr#p! I was extremely close to death. I didn’t get 1 minutes sleep in 5 days. I had restless legs bouncing all over the bed uncontrollably. I couldn’t sit still. Walked/Paced for 5 long days. Nothing helped. I thought that if I could just make it through the first 3-5 days I would be OK. Not the case. I was a mess with no sleep, aching everywhere and becoming delusional. My doctor explained that even after getting over the major hump in detox that I would still carry the effects that I currently felt for weeks and possibly months. So I finally broke down and accepted the SUBOXONE. So am doing everything I can to be 100% clean. Unfortunately I am having a very strange and uncomfortable sensation that is truly driving me mad. I have this internal itch that cannot be scratched. It’s in my chest straight through to my back. It’s constant and never stops. Can anyone please tell me what might be causing this? I haven’t read anything about Suboxone withdrawal causing an internal itch so I’m hoping this post might help.Again I have been off of all opiates and benzo’s for nearly 2 months. I did suffer from hypersensitivity(burning & tingling in extremities, blurred vision, stiff muscles & joints, insomnia, etc) in weeks 3-5 or opiod analgesia? I cannot deal with this crazy internal itch going on. Can someone refer me to anyone that might have posted that they were/are having the same sensation or give me a recommendation on what might eliminate this feeling. At present I want to stick a back scratcher down my throat. Any help with getting off of the Suboxone would be appreciated as well. Thank you

    1. admin Post author

      All I can say is “Holy Shit”! Seriously I have never heard of this before. Did you try taking some benadryl? I’m going to have to ask around about this one. Can any one help this poor guy?