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Buprenorphine Abuse and Addiction

Drug Abuse and Addiction Buprenorphine Abuse and Addiction

Buprenorphine Addiction & Treatment

Buprenorphine is a habit-forming substance even though there is a relatively low chance of addiction-forming compared to other similar opioids such as prescription pain relievers, heroin, morphine, and fentanyl. Once an addiction forms due to buprenorphine misuse, then it can require professional help to overcome if attempts to stop alone aren’t successful.

What is Buprenorphine?

Buprenorphine is a medication that is approved by the FDA for the treatment of opioid use disorder (opioid addiction). It is often used in medication-assisted treatment (MAT) as a long-term treatment plan for opioid addiction as it helps to manage recovery by restoring brain function, improving receptiveness to therapy, and helping to prevent drug addiction relapse. It can, however, be abused and when it is misused, it is snorted, smoked, and injected.

Brand names for buprenorphine include Belbuca, Sublocade, Probuphine, Subutex, Suboxone, Buprenex, and Butrans among others. Street names for buprenorphine include buse, small whites, subs, stops, strips, oranges, and sobos.

Buprenorphine Effects

One of the reasons why buprenorphine is used to treat opioid use disorder is because it has what is known as a ceiling effect. However, people find ways to abuse the drug for the opioid-like effects that it produces by crushing the drug, snorting it, injecting it, and smoking it thereby bypassing some of the features of the drug. The euphoria that the drug produces is why people abuse the drug.

In its traditional medical use, it helps to manage opioid withdrawal by working on the same reward-based systems that heroin and other opioids do but in a more controlled manner, usually not leading to any “high” effects due to the aforementioned ceiling effect.

Signs of Buprenorphine Abuse and Addiction

The signs that you or someone you know may be abusing the substance and may have formed an addiction are important to know about so that the correct professional help can be found before the addiction becomes worse. Some of the common signs that someone may be abusing buprenorphine include the following:

  •         Slurred speech
  •         Itching
  •         Foggy thinking
  •         Doctor shopping to acquire multiple prescriptions
  •         Lying about buprenorphine use
  •         Mood swings
  •         Problems in relationships and work
  •         Drug paraphernalia such as needles, smoking apparatus, and powdery residue
  •         Financial trouble
  •         Disinterest in hobbies
  •         Unexplained weight loss

Buprenorphine Withdrawal Symptoms

As an opioid-type drug, buprenorphine can produce severe withdrawal symptoms that often require a specialized approach to treatment because buprenorphine is one of the drugs that would normally be used to treat an addiction to opioids. Some of the most common buprenorphine withdrawal symptoms caused by substance abuse include the following:

  •         Mood swings
  •         Body aches
  •         Cravings
  •         Depression
  •         Headaches
  •         Nausea
  •         Vomiting
  •         Abdominal pain
  •         Cold sweats
  •         General flu-like symptoms

 In a medical detox program such as the programs offered at Novo Detox, you’ll be helped through specialized medication to manage your withdrawal symptoms.

Long-Term Side Effects of Buprenorphine Abuse

The long-term side effects of buprenorphine misuse can quickly start to add up, leading to an escalating of problems with both mental and physical health. A person abusing buprenorphine may experience some of the following long-term effects:

  •         Liver damage can cause fatigue, stomach pain, and yellowing of the skin
  •         Hormonal problems that can cause an array of issues including vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, depression, low blood pressure, and more
  •         Addiction and drug dependence
  •         Respiratory problems that may even lead to coma and death
  •         Increased risk of drug overdose

Buprenorphine Addiction Treatment

Buprenorphine can be an excellent way to treat opioid use disorder in the long term. However, when the drug is abused and an addiction forms, it can require professional addiction treatment at a rehab center. It’s important to get a medical detox, behavioral therapy, and aftercare services to be able to effectively manage your substance use disorder.

At Novo Detox, we offer you medical detox programs, dual diagnosis treatment, specialized opioid addiction treatment programs, telehealth, and aftercare programs. We also offer residential rehab, partial hospitalization programs (PHP), and intensive outpatient programs (IOP). We will customize an addiction treatment plan to meet your recovery needs.

Reach out to Novo Detox today to get access to Los Angeles’s #1 addiction treatment center and our comprehensive treatment services for buprenorphine addiction and substance abuse, specifically designed for the treatment of opioid use disorder.