Suboxone Withdrawal

Suboxone is designed to help people overcome uncomfortable symptoms associated with opiate or opioid withdrawal.

Sweaty eye closeupWhen it’s used properly, Suboxone attaches to the same receptors used by these drugs, and it fools the brain into believing it has access to the drugs the person once took regularly.1 The flu-like symptoms that are so common with opiate/opioid withdrawal could possibly be avoided with Suboxone.

Since this drug works on the same drug receptors, some people choose to tinker with and manipulate the medication in order to get high, and there are a lot of doses available for that purpose. In the first quarter of 2014 in Kentucky alone, prescriptions for Suboxone and its generic counterpart hit 69,640, local reporters say.2 With the increase in prescriptions, so the potential for abuse of the drug increases.

Those who do abuse Suboxone might experience withdrawal symptoms when they attempt to heal their addictions. Thankfully, this withdrawal process can be managed with the help of professionals that run an addiction treatment program.

The Withdrawal Process

People who stop abusing Suboxone abruptly tend to experience the same withdrawal symptoms seen in people who abuse opiates/opioids. They may experience the following sensations:

  • Twitchy
  • Restless
  • Nauseated
  • Congested
  • Anxious
  • Depressed

Suboxone withdrawal usually begins about three days after the last dose and can last two to five weeks with the most intense symptoms being the first week.3 During this wait, they know that they can make discomfort stop with just one hit of Suboxone, and the urge to do so may be very hard to ignore or overcome.

Treatment for Withdrawal

Leaving people to struggle with Suboxone withdrawal symptoms alone can mean putting people at risk of relapse, and that’s something no addiction professional wants to do. That’s why treatment programs for Suboxone addiction seek to curb the power of withdrawal.

Typically, according to treatment protocols, programs use a tapered withdrawal timeline to help addicted people.1 The idea is to give brain cells the opportunity to adjust to the lack of drugs at a slow and measured pace, so there will be no panicked response that leads to withdrawal symptoms.

On the first day, a person might get the same dose of Suboxone that the person has been using to maintain the addiction.2 The next day, the person might get a milligram or two less. This process progresses until the person is taking nothing at all. If signs of withdrawal arise, the pace is adjusted so no serious discomfort appears.

After Withdrawal

The process of withdrawal is just part of the addiction recovery process. A professional rehab program can help patients learn how to maintain that sobriety for good through individual and group counseling. It’s here that people get the skills they’ll need to avoid the urge to take any drugs at all.

If you’re ready to start the Suboxone withdrawal process, or you’ve already been through withdrawal and need help to maintain your sobriety, call us at The Oaks at La Paloma at our 24 hour, toll-free helpline today. We’re here to help. Please call now.


1 Ungar, L. “Addiction medicine Suboxone now being abused.”Courier Journal. 5 July 2014. Web. Accessed 8 July 2017.

2 “How Long Does Suboxone Withdrawal Last?” LiveStrong.com. 17 September 2011. Web. Accessed 8 July 2017.

3 “Opiate and opioid withdrawal.”MedlinePlus. 20 April 2016. Web. Accessed 8 July 2017.