Suboxone, one of the brand names for buprenorphine, is a mixed opioid partial agonist or antagonist. Interestingly, Suboxone is prescribed as a pain reliever and can also help prevent withdrawal symptoms from opioids. An alternative to methadone, Suboxone, can still cause addiction when misused. So, if you’re wondering how to get Suboxone out of your system, keep reading to learn the safe way to do so.
What is Suboxone?
Suboxone is a medication that works similarly to opioids. It’s available in both a sublingual tablet or a sublingual film. Buprenorphine is the active drug in Suboxone, which works partially like an opioid, but with effects that are weaker than full agonists like heroin or methadone. All drugs containing buprenorphine are Schedule III drugs, which means they have a moderate to low physical dependence potential.
How Long Does Suboxone Stay in Your System?
The buprenorphine in Suboxone has a long elimination half-life compared to other opioids. Half-life is the amount of time it takes a single dose of any drug to leave the system. For buprenorphine, in particular, this process lasts up to 37 hours. However, it can easily take over eight days for Suboxone to leave the body. A specific drug test can detect Suboxone in your blood or hair for up to three months after your last dose.
- Blood Test: Up to 2 days after the last dose
- Urine Test: Up to 6 days after the last dose
- Saliva Test: Up to 3 days after the last dose
- Hair Test: Up to 90 days after the last dose
Factors That Affect How Long Suboxone Stays in Your System
Overall, Suboxone has a half-life of 24 to 42 hours. The liver breaks it down, and it’s then excreted in the urine. However, Suboxone also includes naloxone, which has a shorter elimination period of up to 12 hours. Of course, several factors affect how long Suboxone stays in your system.
Like other drugs, Suboxone levels can build up in the body. Anyone who’s been taking it for some time will have a more difficult time getting rid of it. In this case, Suboxone will be detectable in their system for a more extended period of time.
A person’s height and weight determine the amount of fatty tissue in their body. Here is where the drug is stored in our bodies. Even after considering different dosages, there’s evidence that suggests body composition plays a massive role in how long drugs take to get out of your system. Even gender plays a role, with women having more difficulty getting Suboxone out of their system.
If your body isn’t at its optimal level, it might take longer to metabolize buprenorphine. Since Suboxone is removed through your urine, liver, and kidney function is fundamental to help your body excrete buprenorphine and naloxone. Your metabolism also plays a role. Usually, those with substance abuse problems have impaired digestive enzymes that can affect metabolism. Age, gender, weight, and overall physical activity can also have an impact.
How to Get Suboxone Out of Your System
While Suboxone doesn’t show in standard drug screenings, some specific drug tests can detect buprenorphine. In addition, anyone looking to stop their misuse of Suboxone might attempt some home remedies to get Suboxone out of their system. Particularly because Suboxone comes with withdrawal signs that can last for months, including things like depression, anxiety, sweating, chills, drug cravings, irritability, and more.
Because the risk of overdose from Suboxone is high, the best way to get it out of your system is through medical detox. Opioid withdrawal symptoms can start 6 to 30 hours after your last dose, but they can extend for a week or months without proper assistance. Yet, for Suboxone, these symptoms can develop for months.
The problem with quitting opioids is that when people experience withdrawal symptoms, they’re likely to use them again. Sometimes, they might cope with the symptoms by incorporating other drugs or alcohol. These drugs can cause Suboxone interactions that produce dangerous side effects, including breathing problems, coma, and even death.
A medical detox program may also incorporate medication-assisted treatment, such as naloxone, to help alleviate withdrawal symptoms, prevent relapse, and help people be better prepared for rehab.
Getting Help for Suboxone Addiction
Stopping Suboxone, much like other opioids, suddenly and without the right assistance can lead to troublesome withdrawal symptoms. If you think you may have developed a dependence or addiction to Suboxone, it’s essential to talk to a medical professional and mental health professional. Addiction treatment can help you address the physical and psychological effects of a substance use disorder. These treatments often incorporate various treatment options that include:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Most of the time, these sorts of addictions develop due to compulsive behaviors that must be treated at the source. CBT helps address these addictive behaviors.
- Intensive Outpatient Treatment Programs: When patients are looking to seek addiction treatment while maintaining daily obligations like work, school, or caregiving, IOPs are a more flexible option that still gives people access to the help they need.
- Long-term Recovery Programs: With long-term recovery assistance, patients can have the ongoing support they need to maintain long-lasting sobriety. Recovery programs are crucial to relapse prevention.
Estimates say over 100 Americans die from an opioid overdose every day. If you or someone you know is struggling with Suboxone addiction, please know there’s help available. At Lighthouse Recovery Institute, our addiction recovery programs are designed to offer a comprehensive and patient-first approach to treatment. Our commitment is to develop a customized treatment plan that addresses your unique needs and challenges to help you find the right path toward long-lasting recovery.