TREATMENTSWesley Chapel Spine & Sports Medicine
Suboxone Treatment May Help You Stop Taking Alcohol or Opioids
Are you addicted to alcohol, prescription painkillers or other opioid drugs? The medical professionals at Wesley Chapel Spine and Sports Medicine can help you overcome your addiction with a variety of medications including Suboxone, which is one of the most effective prescription medications for treating opioid dependence that has become available in the past three decades. It can be used as temporary treatment to manage withdrawal symptoms and facilitate the transition from addiction to recovery for people who want to end their physical addiction to alcohol, painkillers, heroin, or other opioid drugs. Withdrawal from alcohol and other depressant drugs (e.g. benzodiazepines) is usually managed with benzodiazepines whereas opioid withdrawal is usually managed with Suboxone. The first step of a detox regimen is to stabilize the patient on a sufficient dose of the substitute medication to prevent dangerous or intolerable withdrawal symptoms. The substitute medication is then tapered over the course of several days or weeks and ultimately discontinued completely. Buprenorphine can also be taken over a longer period of time as opioid replacement therapy to relieve cravings, prevent relapse, and allow time to benefit from ongoing outpatient treatment such as therapy or counseling that addresses social and psychological issues intertwined with the addiction.
Suboxone (Buprenorphine) is a prescription medication specifically designed for individuals who want to stop taking opioids. Opioids are highly effective pain relievers; however, they are not intended for long-term use. Opioids can alter your brain chemistry and cause long-term damage. The World Health Organization and National Institute on Drug Abuse have classified opioid dependency as a “long-term brain disease.”
If you were given Vicodin, Percocet, Hydrocodone, Fentanyl, Oxycodone for pain and became addicted to it, Suboxone therapy may help. Withdrawal symptoms can be severe, but Suboxone can reduce or eliminate those symptoms. This can be especially beneficial for individuals who may not be able to manage withdrawal symptoms on their own. Old age, disability, or other disease can make withdrawal from opioids even more challenging. Suboxone has even been found to help in reducing the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Throughout your therapy, your Board Certified Pain Doctor will administer Suboxone and monitor you with frequent visits in our office. Once you have discontinued using drugs and no longer have cravings or side effects, your doctor will decrease your Suboxone dosage. The length of time you will continue taking Suboxone is individualized according to your needs. With treatment and time, brain health and chemical balance can be restored. Suboxone is a contemporary medication management used for office-based treatment of opioid addiction and for chronic pain. There are some patients who suffer from drug addiction who also suffer from chronic pain and leaving chronic pain untreated is not an acceptable option. Since chronic pain and addiction are a delicate combination of medical problems, patients must seek treatment from pain specialists to avoid relapse.
At Wesley Chapel Spine and Sports Medicine we follow strict guidelines to reduce the risk of relapse, such as close monitoring and prescribing smaller amounts to determine optimum dose and seeing the patient more often.
After your evaluation, you Board Certified Pain Specialist can discuss with you the advantages of Suboxone Treatment and assess if it is an appropriate treatment option for you. Because of the ways it affects the brain, opioid dependence is not something many people can overcome on their own. Drug counseling has been shown to significantly increase the success rate of Suboxone Treatment program.
Some of the things we require from our patients are:
- Adherence to Suboxone Treatment Program
- Ability to follow through with the Wesley Chapel Spine and Sports Medicine Board Certified Pain Specialists recommended schedule of visits
- Willingness to commit to treatment for alcohol and/or opioid addiction
Consider all natural, holistic pain management services that may help in reducing symptoms or complications of alcohol and/or opioid addiction such as Counseling/Therapy, Acupuncture, Low Level Laser Therapy, Chiropractic, Physical Therapy and Regenerative Medicine
Medications for Relapse Prevention
Naltrexone ( Vivitrol) blocks the euphoria (“high”) and all other physical effects of opioid drugs for at least 24 hours after each oral dose. Naltrexone itself produces no euphoria and is completely non-addictive. More recently, naltrexone has been shown to significantly reduce binge drinking episodes in people trying to remain abstinent from alcohol. It works by occupying receptors that cause sedation and euphoria (makes it less rewarding) associated with alcohol or opiate abuse thus making it less likely to get out of control. A longer-acting injectable form of naltrexone, known as Vivitrol, works for up to 30 days after each injection. These therapies work in conjunction with regular visits with a physician and ongoing substance abuse rehabilitation counseling or therapy.
Disulfiram (Antabuse) is one of the oldest and most widely known medications for preventing relapse to alcohol. Similar to naltrexone, disulfiram is neither psychoactive or addictive. It causes a highly unpleasant reaction when combined with alcohol. It works by blocking enzymes involved in alcohol metabolism so that drinking while on Antabuse causes an extremely noxious physical reaction that may include nausea, vomiting, sweating, etc. The ability of disulfiram to cause this reaction lasts for approximately 24-36 hours after taking each dose of the medication. Antabuse is most effective in preventing an unplanned or impulsive return to drinking. The beneficial effects of taking Antabuse include a marked reduction in obsession and cravings as a result of knowing that alcohol will produce no positive effects. As with other medications used to prevent relapse, disulfiram is most effective when used in combination with counseling or therapy.
Researchers have found that patients given the medication, Gabapentin, refrained from heavy drinking twice as often as those getting the placebo. They abstained completely from drinking four times as often. Those taking Neurontin also cut back on the number of drinks they consumed in a given drinking episode by a significant amount. They reported experiencing less depression, fewer cravings, and better sleep.
Buprenorphine (Suboxone, Subutex)
Buprenorphine is a prescription medication that blocks other opioids from attaching to receptors in the brain. Buprenorphine can block the effects of these other drugs. Buprenorphine produces enough of an opioid effect to eliminate cravings and prevent the emergence of an opioid withdrawal syndrome. It is often used to help people withdraw (detoxify) from other opioids and it can also be used as a substitute medication that is taken.
Wesley Chapel Spine and Sports Medicine employs comprehensive Medication-Assisted Treatments (MAT). We believe that long-lasting recovery is achievable for every person who finds themselves in the grips of addiction. We accomplish this goal by customizing a treatment plan for each patient we see. If you think you may be a candidate please don’t hesitate to call us today to schedule a Free Consultation.
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