Started from the bottom, now we’re here”
Look, I get it.
You’ve got your life on track. Your relationships are improving. You’re holding down a job. You feel better.
You’re no longer trying to figure out how to get 10-20 pain pills to take today.
You’re in a treatment program and it’s working.
And now you feel ready to stop your Suboxone or buprenorphine. But how?
The last thing you want to do is go through withdrawals or God forbid…..relapse.
I’ve written a 16 week template to taper from the highest dose (24MG=3 TABS or FILMS) down to ZERO. Obviously, if you are on a lower dose, then you can jump right in wherever you are at and it won’t take you a full 16 weeks.
Now just to be clear: This is not medical advice. This is a conversation. It’s something you can discuss with your doctor and see if it’s right for you.
No one wants to be on medicine forever. But sometimes it’s hard to see an end point.
When things feel overwhelming…break them down to the basics. Keep it simple.
How to Taper Off Suboxone in 16 Weeks
- Week 1: 24mg a day (3 tabs or films)
- Week 2: 24 mg one day, 20 mg the next. Alternate the two doses. (20mg = 2 1/2 films)
- Week 3: 20 mg a day
- Week 4 16 mg a day (2 tabs)
- Week 5: Alternate 16 mg and 12 mg. (12mg= 1 1/2 films or tabs)
- Week 6: 12 mg a day
- Week 7: Alternate 12mg and 8mg
- Week 8: 8 mg a day
- Week 9: Alternate 8mg and 4 mg
- Week 10: 4 mg a day
- Week 11: Alternate 4mg and 2mg
- Week 12: 2mg a day
- Week 13: Alternate 2mg and 1mg
- Week: 14: 1mg a day
- Week 15: 1mg every other day
- Week 16: 1mg every 3 days
If my math is right, this will take approx #128 of the 8mg strips or tablets of Suboxone or Subutex. If your first prescription is for #90 then all you will need for your next rx is #38.
This is a template.
You stay on the week you’re on until you’re ready to come down. The main thing is…don’t go backwards.
If you have to stay on week 8 for a full month, then do that. If you have to stay on it for a full year, then that’s okay.
I have patients that do great. Then they get down to 1mg a day and just can’t seem to take the next step. But I know that with time, they will.
Don’t worry about what other people are doing. It’s easy for some and difficult for others.
You be you.
Talk to your doctor and see if this is a reasonable plan for you.
Please don’t take Suboxone off the street.
Get into a program and do it the right way.
The safe way.