Heroin affects the brain and body in ways that can eventually lead to a serious addiction. It doesn’t discriminate, so people from any background can become vulnerable to its effects. Getting the right help can be key to overcoming heroin addiction. Buprenorphine treatment is one way that Colorado Medication Assisted Recovery helps individuals struggling with a dependency on heroin. It’s administered as part of our medication-assisted treatment program as an alternative to taking an abstinence-only approach.
What Is Buprenorphine?
Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist that produces an effect similar to taking heroin but at a lower level. It’s been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating individuals diagnosed with an opioid use disorder. Clients at Colorado Medication Assisted Recovery typically receive buprenorphine treatment alongside other counseling and behavioral therapies as part of an overall treatment plan for heroin addiction.
Clients receive the medication in tablet form at the recommended dosage once per day. We try and make sure clients receive buprenorphine treatment at the same time each day for consistency. You should never take more than the recommended dosage of buprenorphine to avoid the potential of developing a dependency, similar to the one that you might form with heroin.
How Does Buprenorphine Help with Addiction?
Taking buprenorphine helps clients reduce their need for heroin and other opioids over time. It helps alleviate cravings and can reduce the risk of a client having an overdose. You should stop taking any kind of opioids around 12 to 24 hours before starting buprenorphine treatment. Clients are often in the early stages of withdrawal when they start taking the medication. Heroin withdrawal symptoms can include:
- Cravings for heroin
- Abdominal distress
- Muscle spasms
The discomfort caused by heroin withdrawal can dissuade people from trying to kick an addiction to heroin. That’s where buprenorphine treatment can make a real difference. Alleviating a client’s withdrawal symptoms can increase their desire to complete a rehab program and continue treatment while in recovery.
Clients work with our addiction specialists and doctors to gradually wean themselves off of buprenorphine treatment. One of the reasons that the drug is popular for use with MAT is that it doesn’t typically cause clients to develop a psychological dependency.
Because each client has different needs when it comes to heroin treatment, everyone should have a choice when it comes to care. While an abstinence-only approach to heroin addiction can work for some, it’s not the path forward for everyone. That’s why Colorado Medication Assisted Recovery provides a range of treatment options for clients.
What Are the Side Effects of Using Buprenorphine?
You should let your doctor know if you have known allergies to buprenorphine or ingredients used to make buprenorphine. Make sure you fully disclose other substances you may be taking, including vitamins, nutritional supplements, OTC medications, and prescriptions. Doctors need that information to make sure that you won’t have an adverse reaction to buprenorphine treatment.
People receiving buprenorphine treatment may experience the following side effects:
- Dry mouth
- Sleep issues
- Muscle pain
Inform your doctor immediately if your symptoms worsen to include respiratory distress or signs that you are developing a dependency. Your physician may adjust your dosage or make other arrangements for treating your heroin addiction.
Receive Buprenorphine Treatment at Colorado Medication Assisted Recovery
Our facility offers other treatments and therapies to help clients with addiction issues, mental health disorders, or a combination of the two. Clients get the chance to educate themselves about their addiction and better understand how to manage situations that might cause them to relapse.
- Addiction and pain management
- Mental health treatment center
- Trauma-informed care
- Outpatient treatment center
If you or a loved one need help to overcome a heroin addiction, reach out to Colorado Medication Assisted Recovery at 833.448.0127.