Monday, January 17, 2022

FDA Warns of Higher Risk of Dental Problems from Use of Buprenorphine a Drug Used for Opioid Addiction


One of the biggest problems with addiction to opioids and opiates, is the simple fact that once the body is used to a regular supply of the chemicals in this family, the body rebels when those chemicals are not available.  The common term for that condition is withdrawal and depending on the drug being used and the amount of time it has been used for, withdrawal can be uncomfortable on the low end and intolerable on the other.

That little fact is one of the biggest reasons people stay addicted.  Simply stated, even those individuals who want to stop cannot tolerate the pain and other symptoms that are part of withdrawal.  I am no expert on addiction or withdrawal, but I did learn a bit about the situation in my undergraduate studies in psychology and I know that the high end of withdrawal can be excruciating.  That means for many people dependent on the drugs, alleviating the pain of withdrawal with an intake of opioids is a much better solution than suffering.

The agony of withdrawal is what keeps many continuing the path of drug abuse.

In 2002, a drug was approved by the FDA to help with this pain.  It is called buprenorphine and when taken it can greatly curve the pain and cravings that come with addiction.  It has helped countless numbers of individuals to get their lives back and for many people it has helped provide a path out of the hell that is addiction.

Now comes word that some forms of buprenorphine can cause dental problems which are sometimes severe.  There are multiple forms of the medication, but the problems stem from tablets and films that are placed in the mouth under the tongue and dissolve, thereby delivering the medication through absorption through the sublingual route.

Buprenorphine can also be delivered by injection and transdermal patches.  Both of those types are not related to dental problems.

If you are a patient using one of the dental related products, make sure to make an appointment with your provider and explain your situation to them.  Dentists are more than happy to help folks in recovery.

No comments:

Post a Comment