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How Long Does Suboxone Treatment Take?

  • Tom Walker Asks ...
    Tom Walker

    How bad is a Suboxone Detox? I went through a few weeks of Hell long ago jumping off methadone and, like an idiot; here I am in the same position again. I’m sick to death of this life once again. I won’t do methadone again and I can’t afford to stay on Suboxone for too long. How long should I budget for and what kind of detox can I expect when I jump off at the end?

  • Dr. David Sack Says ...
    Dr. David Sack

    Most people are able to detox off Suboxone with minimal difficulty. The amount of time varies from individual to individual and can be as short as several days and as long as several weeks. Sometimes additional medications can be helpful when people are detoxing from suboxone; these medications may decrease anxiety or assist with insomnia that can accompany the detox process. 

    It’s also important for treatment providers to recognize that sometimes people are taking other medicines in addition to Suboxone that may require their own detox. It has been my experience that a lot of the difficulties are not caused by the Suboxone detox, but by the detox from those other drugs, such as the benzodiazepines, which include Xanax, Klonopin, and Ativan, among others.

    It is critical to work with a professional when detoxing from Suboxone. You will want to work with someone whose philosophy is that Suboxone should be used as a short-term therapy, not as a long-term maintenance drug. At Promises, we have created a specialized program for people who have been on Suboxone for extended periods of time because we recognized this as a growing problem. The goal is to make the client as comfortable as possible so they can fully withdraw from Suboxone and be completely drug-free. We have found it to be helpful to include alternative therapies such as neurofeedback, acupuncture, and massage during detox to ease symptoms.