Cliffside Malibu - Hazy Beach Cliffs

Buprenex Addiction

Buprenex is a brand name for buprenorphine. It is a narcotic analgesic that’s used in treating acute and chronic pain. Pain from cancers as well as neuropathic and musculoskeletal diseases are often treated with Buprenex. Buprenex is also used in addiction treatment to help ease withdrawal syndrome in those who are addicted to opiates and want to stop using them. The chemical composition of Buprenex is similar to codeine, tomorphine and heroin.

If properly used and regulated, Buprenex can be a very effective pain management method and drug addiction treatment. When not regulated, it can become addictive just like other narcotics. Some other medications can also cause an adverse reaction if they are taken along with Buprenex, and Buprenex can increase the effects of alcohol if taken while drinking.

Statistic & Facts

Studies have shown Buprenex to be equally as effective as moderate doses of methadone for opioid maintenance therapy and more effective than a placebo. However, Buprenex is not as effective as optimal (higher) dose methadone for users with a higher level of dependence. Like other narcotics, Buprenex can slow down breathing. It should never be crushed into a liquid and injected, as this can result in death.

You should wear a medical alert tag if taking Buprenex in the event that there is an emergency. Any doctor, dentist, emergency care provider or other medical professional who treats you should be aware that you are being treated for narcotic addiction and taking Buprenex. Buprenex should not be taken with other narcotic pain medications, sedatives, tranquilizers, muscle relaxers or sleeping pills. Buprenex can be habit-forming and addictive. Never wear more than one buprenorphine skin patch at one time unless directed to do so by a physician.


Buprenex addiction occurs in two stages; the first stage occurs when a user develops a tolerance for the medication and begins to need higher and higher doses. The second stage occurs when withdrawal symptoms occur if the patient is without the medication for 24 hours or more. More specific signs of addiction can include:

• Abusing Buprenex — taking more than the prescribed dose.
• Altering its form — crushing the pills into a powder form to be able to snort it or make it into a liquid for injection in an effort to cause the effects to be felt sooner.
• Lying or being deceptive in order to obtain more Buprenex, i.e. telling a doctor or health professional that the pills were lost or stolen so that more can be obtained.
• Making claims that the medication is needed to make it through life.
• Preoccupation with the drug
• Lack of control when it comes to the drug
• Using Buprenex for a prolonged period of time
• Intense cravings for the drug
• Doctor-shopping in order to gain several prescriptions for Buprenex
• Falsifying prescriptions
• Buying Buprenex on the street and/or illegally

Withdrawal symptoms for Buprenex:

• Agitation
• Headaches
• Nausea
• Sweating

Psychological, Social & Physical Effects

Along with its desired effects, buprenorphine can cause some unwanted effects. Side effects of Buprenex abuse can include:

• Blurred vision
• Confusion
• Difficulty breathing, irregular breathing
• Dizziness, lightheadedness or feeling faint when getting up suddenly
• Drowsiness
• Pale or blue-toned lips, skin or fingernails
• Small pupils, like pinpoints

Other physical symptoms and effects of Buprenex include:

• Back pain
• Cough or hoarseness
• Constipation
• Painful or difficult urination
• Headache
• Fever or chills
• Lower back or side pain
• Nausea/vomiting
• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Sleeplessness
• Stomach pain

Signs of Overdoes

If the signs and symptoms of buprenorphine addiction are present, those addicted must face the difficult reality that an overdose might be possible. The potential for overdose on Buprenex is not as common as with other types of opiates, but overdose is still a possible consequence whenever such replacement therapies are used. Danger signs and symptoms of Buprenex overdose can include:

• Pinpoint pupils
• Fainting
• Slowed breathing
• Sedation
• Cold and clammy skin
• Weakness
• Respiratory depression
• Shortness of breath
• Hypotension
• Coma

While these mark the common physical signs of overdose on Buprenex, users may also face issues if they combine Buprenex with other types of drugs. The consequences of mixing drugs can be highly dangerous and even life-threatening.

Cliffside Malibu - Detox


Buprenex has a risk of dependency mainly because the nature of the drug is such that eventually the body will need more to feel the same effect. Although Buprenex is administered via outpatient treatments, the best treatment for buprenorphine addiction is on a residential basis. In this setting, patients are given the maximum amount of one-on-one attention to help them overcome the physical aspects of the addiction. Deeper emotional issues that underlie and drive the addiction can also be explored in an inpatient rehab.

Outpatient care for Buprenex addiction is also available. You will attend counseling sessions and gradually taper off Buprenex use, whereas inpatient treatment involves detoxing completely and being provided with alternative medications within a regulated inpatient setting. Whether inpatient or outpatient care is chosen, counseling and talk therapy will be a primary part of the process. A behavioral modification model is used to explore the deeper causes of the addiction and help to change thought patterns and behavior processes. Group therapy sessions can offer added support following addiction treatment. Each treatment for Buprenex addiction has a different structure and follows a different process, but all treatments have the same goal of getting the patient off the drug and changing the habits, behaviors and thought patterns that led to Buprenex abuse.

Getting Help

If you’re ready and willing to make a change, relief from Buprenex addiction is possible.There is hope and assistance available for those who are struggling with a Buprenex addiction. You don’t have to go it alone. Contact Cliffside Malibu today for more information about programs that can help you address and overcome a Buprenex addiction.


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