Recovering from an addiction to opioids is a difficult journey to take. Your body will experience physical and mental challenges as you go through withdrawal.

At Master Center for Addiction Medicine, we offer Suboxone as a Medication-Associated Treatment (MAT) for opioid use. This treatment plan makes it easier to not only achieve sobriety but also preserve it. We help patients work toward their goals by offering them a stable routine. We work to diminish your physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms, so you will have a steady and persistent recovery. 

Learn more about this prescription as a Medication-Assisted Treatment and how it helps patients like you achieve lasting rehabilitation. 

What is Suboxone?

This prescription is a brand name drug that’s used to clinically treat opioid use disorders. 

This prescription works by blocking the influence of dangerous opioids like heroin, oxycodone, and fentanyl. It features two primary components that allow it to block these effects:

  • Buprenorphine: Buprenorphine initiates a physiological response in the body. It blocks opiate receptors in the brain and reduces a patient’s urges to use. Buprenorphine mimics the influence of opioids without having to actually take them. 
  • Naloxone: Naloxone is the other primary ingredient in this medication. It works to combat the side effects of continuous opioid abuse and ease patients into recovery. 

When combined, these two ingredients create an effective and safe opioid addiction treatment. 

A physician may prescribe this buprenorphine-naloxone medication, but it’s most effective when administered by an opioid addiction treatment center. Our team at Master Center in Richmond will design a program tailored to your recovery. 

Using Suboxone as a Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

This prescription has proven to be effective for many patients when implemented as an MAT. A study published by the Journal of Addiction Medicine stated that Suboxone maintenance was associated with significantly diminished drug use and high opioid addiction treatment retention. 

In this study, three-fourths of patients experienced successful outcomes. The patients either remained in their program or were transferred to methadone maintenance or inpatient treatment. Some tapered off of opioids on their own after going through additional counseling.

Difference Between Suboxone vs. Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

This prescription may be used in a couple of ways. Some patients take it as a detox method. We have found it to be much more effective when taken as part of our MAT program in Richmond. Explore the differences between these two methods below:

Detox Method

When it’s used as a detox method, this medication’s buprenorphine tricks your body into believing that it’s getting the opioids it craves. 

This experience will minimize the “cold turkey” withdrawal symptoms that you would otherwise go through when ceasing opioid use. 

As a detox method, this prescription is best used as a short-term solution. A patient should never use it for longer than 13 days. When they use it for this period, patients are more likely to complete their recovery with an opioid-negative urine sample.

MAT

When our opioid addiction treatment center in Richmond, VA, implements this medication as an MAT, it’s more of a holistic approach. An MAT uses small, controlled doses of the buprenorphine-naloxone drug. It’s administered over a longer period than it is when it’s used as a detox method. 

Our treatment center also uses counseling and other forms of treatment alongside the prescription. 

Benefits of Using Suboxone as a Medication-Assisted Treatment

Using this prescription medication as an MAT offers several benefits: 

  • Allows for recovery without the need for full detoxification
  • Targets the patient as a whole rather than only focusing on the detox symptoms
  • Decreases opioid use, overdoses, drug-related crimes, and transmission of infectious diseases
  • Improves the outcome for the children of pregnant women who are dependent on opioids
  • Improves social functioning and retention during treatment

This prescription is administered in controlled clinical doses. Patients will focus on their recovery and changing their lifestyles for the better rather than on where they’ll get their next fix. 

This prescription medication is a great alternative to methadone. While methadone is effective for some people recovering from addiction, it’s been known to cause adverse side effects like vomiting, slowed breathing, and sexual dysfunction. 

How Long Should I Take Suboxone?

This prescription is a long-term solution when used as part of our MAT program in Richmond, VA. Patients will have a higher risk of relapse when they cease their medication use before the six-month period. 

You should enter our MAT program in Richmond expecting to have at least a six-month commitment. Some patients benefit from taking the medication for even longer. 

Everyone’s recovery needs will vary. You should consult your prescribing physician to determine the length of your opioid addiction treatment program. He or she will also help you decide if you need to stay on your current program or transfer to another prescription like methadone. 

Our Approach

We believe there is much more to treatment than simply prescribing Suboxone. Taking this medication is just one aspect of recovery for people with opioid use disorder. Through our MAT program in Richmond, you get a personalized recovery plan, including individual and group therapy, and the skills you need to make life-long changes.

Here’s how we guide our patients through their program. 

Initial Consultation & Exam

To start your MAT program in Richmond, we will first perform an initial consultation and exam. This will help us determine what your program will look like. We’ll create a tailored recovery regiment based on hair and urine samples and self-reports of your drug use habits. 

Pre-Program Sobriety

Before you begin the next stage of your program (called the Induction phase), you must have not taken opioids for at least 16 hours. In fact, the American Society of Addiction Medicine recommends a time period of anywhere between 16 and 48 hours. 

Once you have reached a moderate state of withdrawal, we will administer your initial induction dose at our opioid addiction treatment center in Richmond. You should feel the effects kick in within an hour. 

For the next three days, you will need to come to our Richmond, VA treatment center for follow-up visits. Your doctor will monitor your progress and adjust your treatment plan accordingly. 

Stabilization Phase

After the initial three days, you will enter the Stabilization phase of your treatment. You will continue to come to our opioid addiction treatment center in Richmond. Your doctor may or may not adjust your prescription based on the

At this point, you will also begin working toward your recovery goals. You may partake in individual counseling, group counseling, and psychiatry sessions to help you in your recovery.

Maintenance Phase

The final phase of our MAT program for opioid addiction treatment is called the Maintenance phase. You will proceed with your treatment for as long as you and your doctor want to follow. Most patients will benefit from being in an MAT program for at least a year. 

The length of your treatment period will depend on how much progress you make and how well you do with therapy and other components of your program. A successful recovery program will allow you to work on all aspects of your life in a healing environment, allowing you to break free of addiction and live in recovery.

Get in Touch With Our Medical Assisted Treatment Team Today

Get in touch with our Richmond treatment center about starting an MAT program that includes a buprenorphine-naloxone medication. Our knowledgeable opioid addiction treatment team will create a customized recovery program for you. 

No matter who you are or what troubles you’ve faced in the past, our treatment center is here to help. Contact us today to schedule an appointment at our treatment center in Richmond, VA!