Nursing Beyond the Vital SignsNursing Beyond the Vital Signs

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Nursing Beyond the Vital Signs

Nursing is so much more than simply popping a thermometer in a patient's mouth or recording a blood pressure. In my time as a nurse, I have participated in life saving efforts when time was critical, I have held a mother's hands when her newborn baby was being prepped for surgery, and I have looked into the terrified eyes of an elderly person in pain. Nurses literally go into battle, serving in military operations all over the world. They also learn and implement the latest in medical technology. This blog is to highlight nurses and prove that they deserve respect and appreciation for all that they do.

The Two Drugs in Suboxone

If you have been struggling with opiate addiction and have decided to get clean, then your doctors may recommend that you use suboxone treatment. Suboxone is designed to ease withdrawal symptoms and keep you from turning to opiates. You start with a larger dose, and over time, you reduce your dose and slowly stop using the suboxone.

Suboxone has been an incredibly successful medication and has helped thousands of patients quit opiates. However, many people have a bit of a misunderstanding or a lack of understanding as to how suboxone works. To better understand its function, you need to consider that suboxone actually consists of two different medications.


Buprenorphine is an opiate medication, which may initially make you wonder why you'd take it for opiate addiction. However, it is a much milder opiate with milder effects than heroin, oxycontin, and the other opiates that are typically abused. You also only need to take a very small amount for it to bind to your opiate receptors and essentially satisfy them so they no longer cause withdrawal symptoms. 

Most people struggling with addiction do not feel high from buprenorphine when they take suboxone, but they do feel their withdrawal symptoms subside. As such, buprenorphine is really helpful for anyone withdrawing from stronger, more addictive opiates. It keeps you from having to deal with the misery of withdrawal, but it does not give you a lot of the pleasurable feelings you're so addicted to from the other opiates. A dose of buprenorphine also lasts for at least a day, so you do not need to take it often.


Naloxone is a drug that is designed to bind to your opiate receptors, although it does not have any of the desirable effects of opiates in the body. As a component of suboxone, it binds to any receptors that are not taken up by the buprenorphine in the drug. Why is naloxone a component of suboxone? Well, it ensures that if you do take any opiates after your dose of suboxone, you do not get high. The opiates cannot bind to your receptors. This deters patients from relapsing. The presence of naloxone also prevents patients from injecting suboxone. If they do inject it, the naloxone will instantly bind to their opiate receptors and cause intense withdrawal symptoms.

Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of the drugs contained in suboxone and how they both work. If you struggle with opiate addiction, this is a medication that can really help you.