You’ve probably heard of Suboxone and Vivitrol before from your friends who have tried to recover from their addiction. Chances are, they have told you that it helped them and that you should try it. Before you run out to try one, it’s important that you understand what they are and how they work. This way you can make an informed decision whether it’s right for you.
Why People Can’t Stop Using Drugs
One of the reasons opioid addiction is so powerful is people feel like they can’t stop using the drug for fear of the pain of withdrawals. A person’s body becomes used to functioning with drugs, and when those drugs are no longer available, it doesn’t function normally. This causes people to feel extremely nauseous, experience the shakes, suffer from aches and pains, and many other uncomfortable symptoms. Instead of going through the agony of withdrawals, many people simply go back to their drug of choice despite all of the problems it has caused for them.
Does this sound like you? Do you want to recover, but you can’t deal with the withdrawals?
How to Overcome Withdrawals for Successful Recovery
Withdrawals don’t have to stand in your way of recovery. Medication assisted treatment with naltrexone (Vivitrol) or buprenorphine (Suboxone) can help.
Suboxone was the first DATA 2000 approved medication for the treatment of opioid addiction. The primary ingredient in Suboxone is buprenorphine, which is a partial opioid agonist. The effects are limited compared to the ones with Oxycodone or heroin. In addition to buprenorphine, it also has naloxone, which is an opioid antagonist. This discourages people from dissolving and injecting it.
This medication is placed under the tongue. Only a small amount of naloxone makes it into the bloodstream, which means the person only feels buprenorphine effects. Those effects include:
Suboxone can be taken long term throughout the recovery process. When you’re ready, you can titrate off the medication, but it should always be under a medical professional’s supervision.
Vivitrol or naltrexone is approved by the FDA as an injectable medication to help with opioid addiction. It is an antagonist that reduces cravings for about a month. Due to it’s extended release, the medication is administered once a month during medication-assisted treatment. Continued use helps people through recovery by:
Vivitrol can also be taken long term. It is a recovery aide because it lowers the chances of relapse. When people are ready to stop taking Vivitrol, they must reduce their dosage gradually as instructed by a medical professional.
Differences Between Suboxone and Vivitrol
In the first study based in the United States, researchers compared Suboxone and Vivitrol and found that they were similarly effective. Vivitrol is harder to use on people because of the detox period. This is why Suboxone is much more popular among those recovering from opioid addiction.
Effectiveness of Suboxone and Vivitrol
Despite how effective medication assisted treatment is, these medications don’t work for everyone. Usually, it’s ineffective in the way of not reducing cravings or relieving withdrawal symptoms enough to keep people from self-medicating with their drug of choice. Many times, the answer for that is medically-supervised detox. This way a doctor, nurses, and other support staff can help people get through the most uncomfortable part of withdrawal to move forward towards the rest of the recovery process.
Controversy Surrounding Suboxone and Vivitrol for Recovery
The most common argument against medication assisted treatment is that it is replacing one drug for another one. Critics say that it’s not recovery when you’re still using drugs every day. The defense to this is that while some people take Suboxone or Vivitrol for a long time, they do not suffer the same fate or consequences as they would if they continued to use opioids. People who use Suboxone or Vivitrol are able to put their life back together by getting a job and paying bills. They also don’t risk their lives to overdose. Relapse prevention is another benefit of the medications. Many studies have shown that the chances of relapse are much lower for those who use these medications throughout their recovery compared to those who don’t use them. So, while these two drugs may be replacing the current drug of choice, the effects of them are much more positive.
How to Get Started
Medication-assisted treatment is available to you if you truly want to recovery from your addiction. It has helped many people free themselves from addiction, and it can help you too. The only thing you need to do is take the first step. The first step is reaching out to Miami Valley Recovery.
Medication Assisted Treatment at Miami Valley Recovery
Miami Valley Recovery is proud to offer Suboxone and Vivitrol to assist our patients during the detox process. Those who have tried Suboxone without success should consider Vivitrol with help during the detox phase (14 days) from our staff. We help our patients reduce the intensity of their withdrawal symptoms with pain relievers and keeping them well hydrated. With the right assistance, you can get through the 14-day detox and then continue on with Vivitrol.
Visit our website at www.miamivalleyrecovery.com or call us at 937-401-8672 for more information about our medication assisted treatment program.