Suboxin? Sabozone? Zabozone? Suboxone!

It’s funny how many ways people can spell Suboxone. Suboxone is a word rarely used outside of the recovery community, but is a staple for those who have struggled with opioid addiction. Suboxone is considered a miracle drug by many, since it virtually eliminates withdrawals and cravings by partially covering opioid receptors. Hence the terms, “partial agonist” and “partial antagonist”, which are used to describe the actual function of Suboxone and Subutex.

Suboxone vs. Subutex – What’s the Difference?

Suboxone contains two chemicals: Buprenorphine and Naloxone.
Subutex contains only Buprenorphine.

What is Buprenorphine and how does it work?

Buprenorphine is an opioid partial agonist. This means that, like opioids, it produces effects such as euphoria or respiratory depression at low to moderate doses. With buprenorphine, however, these effects are weaker than full opioid agonists such as heroin and methadone. Buprenorphine lowers the potential for misuse, diminishes the effects of physical dependency to opioids, such as withdrawal symptoms and cravings and can increase safety in cases of overdose. (Source:

What is Naloxone and how does it work?

It blocks opioid receptor sites, reversing the toxic effects of the overdose and helping prevent cravings. Naloxone is often administered when a patient is showing signs of opioid overdose.  (Source:

Suboxone uses both Buprenorphine and Naloxone together to basically “trick” the brain into thinking it’s getting a normal opioid, but without providing the “high” effect that most opioids deliver. Naloxone helps prevent cravings, while also creating a “ceiling” for the Buprenorphine, preventing overuse and/or misuse. Together, they can allow someone to feel “normal” who has stopped taking opioids, without experiencing withdrawals and cravings, and without the feeling of getting “high”.

Subutex (Buprenorphine only) is most commonly used in two scenarios:

  1. when someone has al allergic reaction to naloxone
  2. when a woman is pregnant

The issue with Subutex is that people have found ways to abuse it since it does not contain the Naloxone as a blocking agent for misuse. This is why many states (including the State of Tennessee) allow the prescribing of Subutex only when someone has an allergic reaction to Naloxone or is pregnant.

Does Suboxone Really Work?
In my personal experience the answer is without a doubt “YES!”
I took prescription pain medications daily for over thirteen years and was unable to even reduce my dosage without experiencing substantial withdrawals and cravings. Withdrawals and cravings that prevented me from functioning normally, keeping me from work, making me avoid family and friends, etc. Without an opioid in my system I was simply unable to function like a normal human being.

Suboxone Saved My Life
I watched my oldest brother die from opioid overdose in 2005 – a time when Suboxone was so new to the market that it was rarely being used in the nations best treatment centers. I have no doubt Suboxone would have saved my brother’s life as it did mine.

Suboxone allowed me to “feel normal”, to function without withdrawals and cravings, putting an end to pill-chasing days for good. I’ve been clean since January 2014 thanks to Suboxone, and have no doubt it saved my life. Suboxone also allowed me to join group recovery and begin working on the many traumas that led me to using drugs in the first place.

The combination of Suboxone, therapy and group recovery worked so well for me I even wrote a book about it. Download, “The 4 Hacks to Getting Clean and Staying Clean for Life“.

Best of success in recovery!

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