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Letter: Suboxone’s use

Addicts don’t use suboxone to get high, but to lessen the symptoms of withdrawal and to reduce cravings by binding with the opiate receptor sites on cell walls.

Whereas a schizophrenic is controlled by voices, an addict is controlled by craving. Suboxone increases the likelihood of remaining clean and permits the addict’s brain to think of things other than getting high. For jails to have addicts withdraw cold turkey without medicine is cruel and abusive punishment; withdrawal from methadone is even worse than withdrawal from heroin.

It is long overdue for jails to offer suboxone, vivitrol and methadone to incarcerated addicts; failing to do so is denying them accepted and effective medical care. Inmate addicts can then stabilize before they are released and are much less likely to relapse. Then perhaps there wouldn’t be a need to smuggle suboxone into jail.



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