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Swallowing Suboxone

Posts: 17
Joined: August 7, 2010

Posted: November 29, 2010, 5:39 PM
Hey everyone,

I've been on suboxone for quite a while now. I'm on 16mg at the moment,

Just a quick question...... if you swallow your suboxone, does that make it not as effective??

I'm asking this as I have done it a couple of times and was wondering if it makes any difference?

Thanks x

Posts: 17
Joined: August 7, 2010

Posted: December 2, 2010, 5:41 AM
Has no-one got any advice??? x

Posts: 15
Joined: April 21, 2010

Posted: December 3, 2010, 6:10 AM
Hi Sinead,

My understanding is that they aren't as effective. When I was reducing I was cutting them in half then quarters and I had to swallow at that point.

By then I had reduced to 2mg daily and I think the need was partly psychological.

Have you got to the point where you forget to take one yet?

Once I'd done that a few times I started to reduce.

Good Luck,


This post has been edited by Eddie B on December 3, 2010, 6:50 AM

Posted: December 3, 2010, 8:51 AM
I started off taking suboxone 6 months ago but now take subutex due to some issues I was having withthe naloxone in suboxone. As far as swallowing it making a difference the amount you would be absorbing of the naloxone should not make too much difference. The only thing I found was that swallowing it and the same goes for the subutex it made me more nautious. Most people I have spoken to prefer not to swallow it in case it lessens the affects of the buprenorphine which I think is probably more psychological? I do find that swallowing the subutex seems to give me a stronger effect?
keep strong

Posts: 17
Joined: August 7, 2010

Posted: December 3, 2010, 5:18 PM
Hey Eddie B,

I'm supervised at the I can't forget to take them.

I have been on suboxone twice before and I managed fine on 8mg. So I have been trying to tell my drugs worker that I don't need to be on such a high dose (16mg) but she won't listen to me!!!

So there have been a couple of times when I have swallowed an 8mg tablet on purpose. I have been reading about suboxone and other people have also told me that less is more. I don't want to get really addicted to sub. Don't know if I'm doing the right thing or not...?? x

Posts: 20396
Joined: February 12, 2004

Posted: December 6, 2010, 1:11 PM
Probably should do what your dr tells you to do. I've never heard of people swallowing them. They are designed to be used under the tongue for a reason. Doing anything other than what your dr prescribes is addictive behavior and not condusive of recovery. You kinda miss the point, you know?

I used Drugs to forget, I got clean to remember.

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Joined: April 24, 2007

Posted: December 6, 2010, 6:43 PM
Excellent advice, Lisa...very insightful about the addictive behavior.

You will not change what you are willing to tolerate.

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Posts: 17
Joined: August 7, 2010

Posted: December 7, 2010, 9:40 PM

I know what you mean about the addictive behaviour.

But it's just so frustrating because I keep telling her that I don't need this amount. She said that she wasn't going to put me on methadone because of how addictive it is....but other people have been telling me horror stories of how addictive suboxone is.....and the woman that I see isn't even a doctor. I just don't get it.....when I'm fine on 8mg (I was actually down to 2mg at one point) she decides to put me on double the amount!


Posts: 10092
Joined: October 27, 2004

Posted: December 8, 2010, 8:48 AM
There has to be a reason she put you at 16mgs and a reason why she won't listen to you in terms of 8 mgs being enough. But I am wondering if you are reacting to the 16 mgs based on what you have read....There is no set dose, where one is comfortable is where they are comfortable.

And I am curious how do you feel on that amount not only physically but mentally. You were weaning in August and afraid to come off and thinking that you were being weaned off to fast, and now you are afraid you are to high???

In terms of swallowing your body will not absorb the full dose...
And in terms of being addicted to it, it is addictive there will be way around that but all opiates are... you really have to not read other people's experiences. You have no idea what coming off will be like and there are a lot of factors that play into this..Like how fast one weaned, if they got to the lowest possible dose, meaning .02 before they jumped and allowed themselves along the way to stable out at each drop... how long they were on and if it was enough time to help them heal, help them work out what got them here in the first place. Also the horror stories play as well and not knowing them does have a more positive effect in terms of a head trip, but knowing them also can show a what not to do if you know the whole story...If your are on a board like this reading stories then make sure you search back and read the whole story.

Being on this is affording you a chance to get your life back together. To find support, to work on your own issues, and driving yourself crazy about end result will not help you...actually it can be an easy distraction to avoid looking within...don't cheat yourself like that.

Good luck, try not to worry so much...

Well it sucks, now doesn't it? When you make your own bed and then have to lie in the filth.


There was a glitch due to system overload. Please stand by to find out what future you will design.

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Posted: December 8, 2010, 2:09 PM
My daughter jumped down from 8 to 4 to 2 in a month and only had two or three bad days...not horrible days, just normal bad days. Misty is right...forget about what others say...for every horror story there's a success story...let yourself be one of those.

Peace ~ MomNMore

You will not change what you are willing to tolerate.

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Joined: March 11, 2006

Posted: December 8, 2010, 4:25 PM
..What works for one Sinead dosen't nessacarily work for the other..Did you have a lapse/use on top of your subs between August (6mgs- when your dose was being lowered) and when she put you up to 16mgs..i can't understand why she would lower then up your dose without good reason ?..if she hasn't had good reason to up your dosage then i would have a word with the Doctor or the Service Manager about this if i were you..if she has had good reason/reasons you given her to make her top it up the maybe your not ready to have your dose lowered just yet and she is acting in your best interests..its not beneficial for you to be in this situation though..As you have been on them a couple of times before then maybe you need some stability at the moment and not be worrying about coming off them anytime soon..its not worse or better to come off 16mgs-0 than it is coming of 8mgs-0 it just takes that little bit longer..sometimes when we think something is hindering us it could actually be helping us ?..take it easy on yaself sinead and try not to stress to much..time is a great healer..Robbie..

..Hey Tina..hope ya well..things are good my end..take care..

..The key to happiness is being grateful for what you do have..Rather than thinking about what you don't have ?..

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Joined: October 26, 2005

Posted: December 10, 2010, 7:51 PM
Hi Sinead. I'm on suboxone for the 16th time now! I won't tell you any stories about coming off as like everyone here has said, everyone's different and there's no point scaring yourself listening to people's horror stories. There will be plenty of success stories too I'm sure. I actually have the patient information leaflet here and it does say that they are ineffective if swallowed and should only be taken sublingually. Again, I've never tried swallowing them as I don't want them to not work! My drug worker also tried to get me to stay on a high dose (16mg) for a long period of time the last time I was on them but I knew from past experience that it was too high for me. I just went along with it till I came off supervised and reduced myself at home down to 2mg a day. I've done this loads of times and it was painless. I personally can't sleep on a high dose and get headaches which is a listed side effect of taking them. I know these people are supposed to be the professionals but I also know how my body feels and what is good for me so I found a drug worker who actually listened to me and respected the fact I'd been on them before and was really good with me. They might have read all the books and got the qualifications but they have not experienced the actual effects of the medication/any side effects/titration and reductions so they have to listen to you too. I can understand them being catious if you keep asking for more but when you feel ready to reduce, they should be open to discussion about it and let you have some say in the matter. Suboxone/subutex are great if used properly and you find a dose which works for you. How long you stay on them is entirely dependent on how you are mentally and physically. I'd suggest just getting your life to where you want it to be and when you feel ready in both these ways, reduce at your own pace. Don't rush it, i've made that mistake a few times and screwed up.
Talk to your doc and ask for their reasons why they won't let you reduce and discuss it through. You can still stay on a maintenance dose, just a lower one if that suits you.
Good luck
Linz x

This post has been edited by Linz on December 10, 2010, 7:57 PM

Denial is not a river in Egypt!

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Joined: February 12, 2004

Posted: December 22, 2010, 1:02 PM
My son's doctor told him something about there having to be enough suboxone in your system to fill the receptors? Maybe 8mg wasnt' enough. But whatever the case, it worries me that your Sub "dr" isn't a "dr" at all...what is she? How are you doing with all of it now?

I used Drugs to forget, I got clean to remember.

Posts: 78
Joined: June 28, 2010

Posted: January 5, 2011, 3:06 AM
hey sinead, I've posted on here a bit about getting off of drugs (and getting off of the drugs to get off of the drugs, namely Suboxone). It can be done, but many people have problems with it. Getting off of drugs is far more hard-core than getting hooked is.

I have over a year off suboxone, 2 years off cigarettes/nicotine, and 6 months off zoloft. I'm currently not physically dependent on any substances, which is completely amazing. It can be done.

The key is a willingness to change ... EVERYTHING.

The things you retain are the best parts of you, the parts that addiction has hidden from ourselves and our loved ones.

If you're interested in particulars, let me know. I don't use the fellowship of NA/AA, but I do use the principles of NA/AA. Maybe when I'm older I'll find a fellowship that suits me, I couldn't find anyone in this town to sponsor me, really. I hope to find a mentor in the program one day who feels comfortable being my mentor.

Good luck.


As you grow older, you'll find the only things you regret are the things you didn't do. ~Zachary Scott

Posted: January 19, 2011, 11:59 AM
hi regarding suboxone,
iv been on the stuff for 4 years now like you 16 ml a day,the only reason to put you on a high dose is to complete a full opiate blocking effect,so if you use on top its a waste of time and money,bupenorphine has to enter the blood stream directly which is why sublingual,they only put the nalxon in the stop people snorthing and banging it up.which was what was happening with subtex,as for swollowing it has no effect at thinking hard about rehab does any one have experiance or advice,love to know your thoughts.
good luck

Posted: January 26, 2011, 11:06 AM
if you swallow the tablets ? your kidneys and liver digest some of the qualities you're supposed to be gaining. It DOES make a difference.

Posted: February 3, 2011, 1:49 AM
I have been involved with a program called Recovery2day and the point of this program is to remove all barriers to recovery,eliminate magical thinking and is based on proven science...

I have been battling substance issues for better than 30 years and have made some very important changes in my life...The only thing I am currently addicted to is nicotine and that is next.

I won't comment on sub withdrawl as we all react differently...

Anyone interested in recovery 2day it can be found at or at our facebook page...There is 2 paths in recovery 2day. one is the south pass and contains terminology such as god or higher power and if you flip the book over it is the north pass for secularists,atheists,agnostics or anyone just wishing to utilise science based tools without having to read around words such as god...
Good Luck

Posted: April 26, 2012, 10:27 PM
Wow! Reading all these post make me get the sense that there is a real community; that is reassuring. I was addicted to heroin and withdrew with bupe. Many years later I developed chronic pain issues and was reluctant to try oxycontin as my Doctor suggested. I found an addiction specialist who recommended that I use Suboxone for pain management. It is very effective for my peripheral neuropathy and quite honestly gives me the same mood stabilizing effect that heroin did without all the grossness involved. I used to swallow the saliva with the strips, but now I don't. I usually dose after a cup of coffee and this keeps my mouth from salivating too much. I keep the eight mg/2mg stip under the center of my tongue for about 30 mins and then spit. The absorbtion rate is good and the spit is usuallhy clear, not orange. I came to this forum to see why it is recommended not to swallow the medication. my best guess is that the nalaxone stays in the expelled spit, making the dose more effective. Any comments?

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Joined: February 12, 2004

Posted: April 27, 2012, 11:31 AM
Hollywood..they were talking about swallowing the whole pill, not just the spit.

I used Drugs to forget, I got clean to remember.

Posted: April 27, 2012, 3:33 PM
Thanks, Cowgirl.
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