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Posted By Jun - SuboxoneDoctor.com Team on 05/10/2023 in Opioid Treatment

A Guide on How to Taper Off Suboxone

A Guide on How to Taper Off Suboxone

If you're reading this, chances are you have already taken the brave and crucial step to overcome opioid addiction. We're glad that you have decided to seek treatment. Now that you are on the path to recovery, it's time to start looking toward the future. One of the first steps towards long-term sobriety is tapering off Suboxone

Tapering off Suboxone means slowly reducing your dose until you no longer need the medication. This process can be challenging, but with the proper support and planning, it is possible to get off Suboxone safely and successfully. This guide will discuss how safe tapering off Suboxone is, why tapering is more effective than quitting cold turkey, short vs. long tapers, steps on how to get off Suboxone, and more.

It’s important to remember that when it comes to tapering off Suboxone, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Each patient is unique and must work closely with their doctor to design a plan that best suits their needs and goals. With that in mind, let's begin.

Taper Off Suboxone

Is Tapering Off Suboxone Safe? Is-Tapering-Off-Suboxone-SafeAfter getting Suboxone treatment, tapering off Suboxone is the recommended and safest way to discontinue medication use. This slow, controlled approach reduces the risk of experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms while allowing your body to adjust gradually.

Tapering off Suboxone is safe as long as it is done under the supervision of a doctor and with the right dose, frequency, and timeline. The goal is to slowly reduce your dose while avoiding any side effects that may come with abrupt changes.

Your Suboxone doctor will monitor your progress and adjust your dose as needed. It ensures you get the support and dosage you need to complete the taper successfully. 

Tapering Off Suboxone vs. Quitting Cold Turkey

Tapering-off-Suboxone-vs-Quitting-Cold-TurkeySuboxone detox can be a complex process since Suboxone is a long-acting medication. It stays in your system much longer than other opioid medications. And having it gone or leaving your system can cause uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms. That's why Suboxone detox programs are so essential and why tapering off Suboxone is recommended over quitting cold turkey.

When you abruptly stop taking Suboxone, your body goes into shock as it suddenly has to adapt to the lack of the opioid in its system. It can cause severe withdrawal symptoms that are both physical and psychological.

Slowly reducing your dose allows your body to adjust to the lower opioid levels slowly. It makes the process much smoother and more manageable.

Short vs. Long Tapers


A study conducted back in 2009 concluded that short and long tapers didn't have much difference in terms of how successful they were in helping people to get off Suboxone.

However, it's important to remember that each person is different and may need a longer or shorter taper, depending on their needs. That’s why working with your doctor is necessary to develop the best plan for you.

Generally speaking, those who have been taking Suboxone for a shorter period may be able to complete the taper in as fast as one week.

On the other hand, for those who have been taking Suboxone or opioids for a more extended time, the taper could take up to several weeks or even a few months.

How to Get Off Suboxone

How-to-Get-Off-SuboxoneNow that we’ve discussed the basics of tapering off Suboxone, let us look at how to get started. The steps for getting off Suboxone are as follows:

1. Determine Your Dose

This step involves determining the dose that best suits your needs. Your Suboxone doctor will work with you to ensure your dose is appropriate and effective. Expect to discuss the amount of Suboxone you’ve been taking, how long you've been on it and any other medications or substances you are currently taking.

2. Set Your Schedule

Once you have determined your dose, it's time to set up a schedule for tapering off. Your doctor can help you create a timeline tailored to your needs and goals. As we've discussed before, the timeline may vary depending on the length of time you've taken Suboxone.

In general, a detox timeline should involve decreasing your dose by 10-20% every 4 to 7 days until you reach the end of your taper.

3. Prepare Your Medications

Once the tapering begins, you'll feel uncomfortable as the dosage is reduced due to withdrawal symptoms.

When this time comes, it's crucial to have the proper medications on hand in case you need them during the taper to manage withdrawal symptoms. Be sure to talk to your doctor about the right medications, and have them ready before tapering.

For example, fever and body aches are typical withdrawal symptoms that can occur during tapering. In this scenario, your doctor may prescribe ibuprofen to help manage the discomfort.

4. Work With Your Doctor

Lastly, work with your doctor as you taper off Suboxone. It involves regular follow-up appointments where your doctor can check your progress and adjust as needed.

Do not attempt to taper off Suboxone without the help of a doctor. The withdrawal process can be dangerous if not properly monitored and managed.

What to Expect Tapering Off Suboxone

What-to-Expect-Tapering-Off-SuboxoneWhen tapering off Suboxone, the most important thing to know is that it takes time. It won’t happen overnight, and there may be some difficult days in between. Tapering off Suboxone can cause a wide range of physical and psychological symptoms.

While everyone’s experience is different, there are some common symptoms that you may experience while tapering off Suboxone.

Common physical symptoms include difficulty sleeping, changes in appetite, nausea, body aches and pains, headaches, fever and chills, and sweating.

Other psychological effects can vary from person to person but may include anxiety or depression, irritability, mood swings, cravings for the drug, difficulty concentrating, or even flashbacks.

It is essential to be aware of these potential symptoms to manage them as best as possible while tapering off Suboxone. It is also a good idea to talk to your doctor and tell them if these symptoms become too much for you to handle. They may be able to adjust your tapering schedule to help you manage withdrawal symptoms or provide additional medications or therapies.

Tapering off Suboxone is a process. It will take time and patience to get through it. Be sure to stay committed to your plan and know that things will get better if you remain focused on achieving your goal of being completely free from Suboxone.

Get Professional Assistance in Tapering Off Suboxone

Working with a certified Suboxone doctor will significantly increase your chances of successfully tapering off Suboxone. A qualified professional can help you create a personalized plan for tapering and advise you on the best way to reduce your dose to minimize withdrawal symptoms.

Additionally, they will be able to provide the necessary guidance and support throughout the process, which can make all the difference when it comes to staying motivated and on track with your tapering schedule.

If you’re looking to taper off Suboxone, be sure to find a certified doctor who is experienced in Suboxone treatment. It will help ensure your experience is as safe and successful as possible.

Visit SuboxoneDoctor.com to find certified Suboxone doctors near you today.