Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) should be taken when the body has already started to feel withdrawal symptoms. When taken at the appropriate time, Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) should make you feel BETTER (not worse!).
When you should take Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) depends on your level of tolerance (how much your body has become “used” to having opioids) and the specific substance and dose you have been taking.
In general, patients should wait the following number of hours after taking their last opioid before starting their buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) induction:
A good rule of thumb to make sure you experience the appropriate amount of withdrawal before starting Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) is to make sure you have AT LEAST 3 symptoms of withdrawal AND you feel pretty uncomfortable:
A final good rule of thumb is to wait until you feel pretty uncomfortable in your withdrawal and THEN wait an additional 1-hour (set an alarm clock!) before taking Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone).
At Bicycle Health, we provide patients with a home-induction handout that will walk you through your withdrawal symptoms so you take Buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) at the appropriate time. We also provide clinical support specialists who are available 24/7 by phone to answer questions and provide support during patients’ home induction.