While tapering, some people experience difficult withdrawal symptoms. You can reduce symptoms severity with a slow tapering regimen* but you may still experience significant discomfort. Here is a list of OTC and prescription medications you may want to consider to help alleviate the discomfort of withdrawal.
*In addition to reducing the discomfort of withdrawals, a longer-slower tapering program also increases your odds of eventual success.
Typical Suboxone withdrawal symptoms include:
- Depressed mood
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal pain and diarrhea
- Runny nose and tearing eyes
- Muscle aches and cramping
- Lower back pain
- Light fever
- Elevated blood pressure and heart rate
Medications for Suboxone Withdrawal Symptoms
The following recommendations are from a 2009 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA) nursing publication on the use of buprenorphine (Suboxone).1
Over the Counter Medications
For Muscle Aches
- Try 800 mgs of ibuprofen, every 6 hours as needed.
For General Pain
- Try 1000 mgs of acetaminophen (Tylenol) every 4 hours, as needed.
For Gastrointestinal Problems
- Try 30 cc of Maalox every 2 hours, as needed.
- Try 2 mgs of lopermide (Imodium) every 6 hours, as needed.
- Try 50 mgs of diphenyhdramine (Benadryl) at bedtime, as needed.
If experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms while tapering, talk to your Suboxone doctor about the possibility of a prescription for one or more of the following medications.
For Abdominal Pain
- Try 40 mgs of dicyclomine every 6 hours, as needed.
For Nausea and Vomiting
- Try 25 mgs of promethazine, every 6 hours, as needed.
- Try 0.1 mgs of clonidine, every 2 hours, as needed.
Reducing Withdrawal Symptoms While Tapering
You may be able to reduce withdrawal symptoms while tapering by splitting your medication into smaller doses, taken 2 or 3 times per day.
Page last updated Nov 20, 2015