Doctors have been coming up with drugs to treat many illnesses throughout the year, from the common headache to seizures to anxiety and many more. They also, at the same time, try to consider the chances of it being addictive. Still, it seems that either physical or psychological addiction is at risk for any abused substance.
Gabapentin Is Widely Used Today
One such prescription drug that is fairly new and not considered a drug that is abused is Gabapentin. Originally approved as an anti-seizure medication, gabapentin (Neurontin) is one of the most popular drugs in the country. In addition to treating seizures, gabapentin is widely used today to treat nerve pain related to diabetes, lumbar spine disc disease, and shingles. But as it turns out, this drug has many other interesting benefits such as:
- Pain after surgery
- Alcohol withdrawal
- Cannabis withdrawal
- Nighttime hot flashes from menopause
- Restless leg syndrome
- Chronic vaginal or pelvic pain
- Headaches after a concussion
- Itchy skin
- Social phobia
Gabapentin: Hardly Harmless
Although Gabapentin is considered not a highly addictive drug because it acts as a sedative and can have the same euphoric feeling similar to marijuana, it still can become a habit. Gabapentin is made as white, yellow, or orange capsules and tablets. They are usually taken orally but are also crushed up to powder form to snort into your nasal passages.
On the street, it can go by the names morontin and gabbies, and it is most commonly used by people who mix it with other substances to increase the effects of the gabapentin or other intoxicant. It has also been known to be used to aid withdrawal symptoms from opiates and alcohol.
Withdrawal Symptoms Of Gabapentin
Gabapentin can produce withdrawal symptoms when taken over long periods. The withdrawal symptoms may resemble some of the symptoms of alcohol and benzodiazepine withdrawal. Like any other substance abused, factors such as age, dose, length of use, medical or mental health problems, and use of other drugs or alcohol can affect withdrawal.
The primary withdrawal symptoms associated with gabapentin use include:
- Sensitivity to light
- Irregular heartbeat
Withdrawal usually occurs within 12 hours to 7 days after quitting the medication. Though a withdrawal timeline hasn’t been documented, some studies have noted symptoms that last up to 10 days.
Gabapentin: A Not So Innocent Drug
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NCBI):
A RECENT POLICE REPORT INDICATES THE INCREASING TENDENCY TO USE GABAPENTIN AS A ‘CUTTING AGENT’ IN STREET HEROIN (AND TO RECOVER GABAPENTIN ON THE STREET) IN PRISONS), FURTHER ADDING TO THE ABUSE AND DANGER POTENTIAL. LIKE OPIATES, GABAPENTIN IS FATAL IN OVERDOSE; UNLIKE OPIATES, THERE IS NO ANTIDOTE, AND THE LONG HALF-LIFE INSTILLS THE NEED FOR PROLONGED, INTENSIVE MANAGEMENT OF OVERDOSE.
Call Aria Florida’s Clinical Staff For Severe Treatment Options
If you or a loved one may think they have an addiction to Gabapentin, know there is help at Addiction Recovery Institute of America.
The team of addiction specialists at the Addiction Recovery Institute of America in West Palm Beach knows that no two individuals struggling with addiction are the same. This is why we are careful to design a drug and alcohol treatment center for each of our clients tailored to their individual needs. From our detox programs to our residential recovery programs to our outpatient care, ARIA has the right solution for you.