Author: Charles Frank

How Do You Properly Take Suboxone?

how to take a suboxone pill

Keep the films in place until they have completely dissolved. If your doctor tells you to take a third film, place it on the inside of your right or left cheek after the first 2 films have dissolved. Follow the directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides. Never use Suboxone in larger amounts, or for longer than prescribed. Tell your doctor if you feel an increased urge to use more of this medicine. Fatal side effects can occur if you use this medicine with alcohol, or with other drugs that cause drowsiness or slow your breathing.

how to take a suboxone pill

This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Data sources include Micromedex (updated 3 Mar 2024), Cerner Multum™ (updated 4 Feb 2024), ASHP (updated 12 Feb 2024) and others. Just one dose can cause death in someone using this medicine accidentally or improperly. Ask your pharmacist where to locate a drug take-back disposal program. If there is no take-back program, remove any unused films from the foil pack and flush the films down the toilet. Suboxone is a Schedule III medication that’s misused similar to other opioid medications.

The government has created special rules for how Schedule III drugs can be prescribed by a doctor and dispensed by a pharmacist. The dosages in this article are typical dosages provided by the drug’s manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Suboxone for you, they will prescribe the dosage that’s right for you. If you’re having trouble reading your prescription label, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. Some pharmacies offer labels with large print, braille, or a code you scan with a smartphone to convert text to speech.

Withdrawal timeline

These are dosages recommended and approved by the manufacturer and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, your doctor will prescribe the Suboxone dosage that’s right for you. This article describes typical dosages for Suboxone provided by the drug’s manufacturer. When taking Suboxone, always follow the dosage prescribed by your doctor.

  1. Never crush or break a Suboxone sublingual tablet to inhale the powder or mix it into a liquid to inject the drug into your vein.
  2. When you use Suboxone film in your cheek, your body absorbs more naloxone, and withdrawal symptoms are more likely.
  3. Opioid dependence treatment, on the other hand, is a longer-term approach to reducing dependence on opioids, with most of the treatment being done on an outpatient basis.
  4. If you’re dependent on other opioids and misuse Suboxone by injecting it, it will block the effects of any opioids in your system.
  5. The recommended target dosage of SUBOXONE sublingual film during maintenance is 16 mg/4 mg buprenorphine/naloxone/day as a single daily dose.

Drug tolerance has not been seen with Suboxone or with either of the drugs it contains (buprenorphine or naloxone). When Suboxone is used long term for opioid dependence, tolerance to the beneficial effects of Suboxone doesn’t occur. When certain opioids are used long term for treating pain or for a “high,” tolerance to those effects can happen over time. This means your body gets used to the drug and you need higher and higher doses to get the same effect. During the maintenance phase, Suboxone is used at a stable dosage for an extended period. The purpose of the maintenance phase is to keep withdrawal symptoms and cravings in check as you go through your treatment program.

Certain medications make an enzyme called cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) more active and can increase how fast the body breaks down Suboxone. A 2017 study found that Vivitrol and Suboxone were equally effective for reducing opioid and heroin use over 12 weeks. A 2018 study found that Suboxone was more effective for preventing relapse and was easier to use than Vivitrol. Suboxone and sublingual buprenorphine are very similar drugs and cause similar common and serious side effects.

Suboxone vs. Naltrexone

See the “Suboxone dosage” section above for more information about the timing of Suboxone doses. After Suboxone film dissolves completely, swish some water around your teeth and gums and swallow it. This can help lower your risk of dental problems such as cavities, which can be a side effect of Suboxone treatment. St. John’s wort can make an enzyme called cytochrome P450 3A4 more active in your body. Because of this, taking St. John’s wort with Suboxone can cause your body to get rid of Suboxone more quickly. It’s also available as a brand-name version called Diskets.

This side effect tends to go away with continued administration of the medication as the body gets used to it. If you use Suboxone while you are pregnant, your baby could become dependent on the drug. This can cause life-threatening withdrawal symptoms in the baby after it is born. Babies born dependent on opioids may need medical treatment for several weeks.

More about Suboxone (buprenorphine / naloxone)

Once you and your doctor find a Suboxone dosage that manages your symptoms, your treatment will continue into the maintenance phase. For the maintenance phase of treatment, Suboxone film may be placed under your tongue or inside your cheeks to dissolve. During induction treatment, you’ll receive Suboxone doses at your doctor’s office or clinic. For induction therapy, it’s recommended that you place Suboxone film under your tongue and not on your cheeks. The systemic exposure of buprenorphine between buccal and sublingual administration of SUBOXONE sublingual film is similar.

Suboxone Film vs. Tablets

If your local pharmacy doesn’t have these options, your doctor or pharmacist might be able to recommend a pharmacy that does. The highest recommended dose of Suboxone in one day is 24 milligrams (mg) buprenorphine/6 mg naloxone. Check out this article to learn more about Suboxone, including possible side effects the drug can cause. Contact your doctor if you’re having side effects from Suboxone. The typical maintenance dosage of Suboxone ranges from 4 mg buprenorphine/1 mg naloxone up to 24 mg buprenorphine/6 mg naloxone, which is also the maximum dose.

This means that more of the medication can enter the system by dissolving through the skin of the mouth than it can by being digested in our very acidic stomachs. Never crush or break a Suboxone sublingual tablet to inhale the powder or mix it into a liquid to inject the drug into your vein. Do not stop using Suboxone suddenly, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. There are alternative drugs in different forms available to treat opioid use disorder. Naloxone has poor bioavailability when administered sublingually.

This includes information about recommended dosages, including the lowest dose and highest dose typically prescribed. Or, you can view the drug’s full prescribing information. Suboxone is only prescribed for induction if you are dependent on a short-acting opioid. Short-acting opioids include morphine, heroin, and oxycodone. Your doctor will wait to prescribe your first Suboxone dose for induction until it’s been at least 6 hours since your last opioid dose. Taking Suboxone with Ambien (zolpidem) can increase the risk of severe side effects.

The following information is provided for clinicians and other healthcare professionals. Drinking grapefruit juice while taking Suboxone might increase levels of Suboxone and increase your risk of side effects. If you’re taking Suboxone, don’t drink grapefruit juice.

There is a range of addiction recovery programs aimed at helping individuals with opioid use disorders. Find out how Suboxone can help you or your loved one to recover from addiction. Suboxone tablets look similar to other tablet medications. Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use. If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible.