Posted By Admin - Blog Contributor on 09/20/2018 in Opioid Treatment

An In-depth look into the Science of Suboxone

An In-depth look into the Science of Suboxone

What sets Suboxone apart from other opioids? How does it affect the neurological processes of our mind?

In this article, we will address these important questions to help you better understand the Science which goes behind making Suboxone an effective opioid addiction treatment.

Effects on the Brain: Suboxone vs. Stronger Opioids

The Science of Opioids

Our brain has neurotransmitters that are responsible for the transmission of vital information. In actuality, they are just molecules that travel and attach themselves to different receptors on neurons, activating them in the process. 

We have a myriad of opioid receptors concentrated in a region inside our brain called the Locus Coeruleus. When an opioid molecule attaches itself to an opioid receptor in this region, the release of a neurotransmitter called noradrenaline is inhibited. This particular neurotransmitter is responsible for the classical symptoms of fight and flight ― dilated pupils, alertness, increased blood pressure and breathing. Its inhibition results in the loss of breath, dizziness, numbness of the senses― also referred to as “the high”― and other counteractive symptoms.

Along with Noradrenaline, opioid molecules also promote the release of the highly coveted neurotransmitter “dopamine”. Dopamine evokes feelings of pleasure in the opioid user. This hormone is also naturally produced in our body when we indulge in healthy activities like painting and writing or exercising. However, the pleasurable effects in these cases are much milder than the euphoric feeling induced by stronger opioids like Heroin.

“Although, Heroin and other opiates make us feel euphoric initially, their constant use results in the development of a serious opioid dependency which is hard to break free from.”

Consistent use of opioids activates defense mechanisms in the brain, which in turn deactivate certain receptors. This process results in the development of tolerance inside the body, which means that you have to take a stronger dose of opioid to achieve the same euphoric effect due to limited availability of receptors. Also, when you stop the use of opioids, noradrenaline is flushed in large amounts, resulting in deeply upsetting withdrawal symptoms, including anxiety, pain, and vomiting.

The Science of Suboxone

Buprenorphine and Naloxone are the two active ingredients of Suboxone. Here’s how they work in conjunction to make Suboxone a safe and effective option for opioid addiction treatment.


Buprenorphine mimics the functions of stronger opioids. Its strong affinity to opioid receptors helps replace and block other dangerous opioid molecules. Unlike other full opioid agonists, it is a partial opioid agonist, meaning it induces mild euphoric effects, just potent enough to prevent symptoms of withdrawal. Also, the likelihood of developing tolerance is also quite limited because it is dissipated in a longer time than usual, which puts only a slight load on the receptors.

“Patients have proclaimed that they feel normal, instead of feeling high after adhering to a regimen of Buprenorphine.”

What Buprenorphine does best is remove your dependency on other opioids. You no longer feel the urge to inject yourself or take opioids regularly. This restores decorum to your life, giving you the freedom to carry out your day-to-day activities which other opioids had made it impossible to perform. With time, under the guidance of a Suboxone doctor, you can also lower the dose of buprenorphine to return your brain to its pre-dependence phase.

The potential for Buprenorphine abuse is trifling. However, as a precautionary measure, Naloxone is added to it.


Naloxone is an anti-agonist and is highly effective in blocking the effects of Buprenorphine. If one chooses to take high doses of Buprenorphine orally, Naloxone steps in and stops it from binding to opioid receptors, as it has even a greater affinity for them than Buprenorphine.

If you’re seeking extended guidance on the use of Suboxone, get in touch with a certified Suboxone doctor from our website: