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How long do you keep Subutex under your tongue?

Medically reviewed by Carmen Fookes, BPharm. Last updated on Nov 8, 2021.

Official answer


Subutex should be kept under the tongue until it has completely dissolved (which takes 4 to 8 minutes on average). Do not swallow, chew, or move the film after it is placed under the tongue, as doing any of these makes the medicine less effective. Before taking Subutex, do NOT smoke, eat or drink for 15 minutes before putting it under your tongue, and do not smoke, eat or drink for 15 minutes after putting it under your tongue.

The effects of Subutex last for 24 hours.

Subutex has been discontinued and in most cases has been replaced by Suboxone.

Subutex was an oral sublingual medication that contained buprenorphine that was used to treat opioid addiction. Subutex was not approved to relieve pain. It takes 4 to 8 minutes for Suboxone to be absorbed.

  • Subutex Updated 01/2021 Cerner Multum
  • Suboxone (buprenorphine HCl and naloxone HCl dihydrate sublingual tablets) Subutex (buprenorphine HCl sublingual tablets) Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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