Painkiller addiction is on the rise, and it must be stopped. Unfortunately, too many people are misusing their prescriptions and becoming addicted to substances like Gabapentin, also known as Neurontin. Some doctors are, unfortunately, prescribing it when something less addictive would be more beneficial and effective. We need to understand what Gabapentin is used for to know why some people are addicted to prescription medications.
What Is Prescribed Gabapentin Used For?
Neurontin (Gabapentin) is a prescription medication that is an anti-convulsant and anti-epileptic. It is prescribed to treat epilepsy, but it has a couple of other uses as well. Gabapentin is helpful to those with nerve pain or healing from shingles. Since it affects the central nervous system, Neurontin is an effective treatment for restless legs syndrome.
It is also for people with anxiety and mood disorders. For this purpose, it is prescribed at a lower dose. It has successfully combated suicidal ideation, reduced anxiety, and managed bipolar disorder throughout the day. Some also report improved sleep, which is helpful for many with mental health issues.
What Are The Signs Of Gabapentin Abuse?
With Gabapentin being beneficial to so many people, how do you know if someone is abusing it? There are some subtle signs to look for. Signs of Gabapentin misuse are:
- Refusing to stop, even under the direction watchful eye of their prescribing doctor.
- Doctor shopping for multiple prescriptions also means they are visiting various pharmacies to have them fulfilled.
- Taking extremely high doses that are not for them.
- Sudden changes in their appearance and social habits.
- Using it with other substances, such as alcohol or other drugs.
- Preoccupied with obtaining and using Neurontin.
- Faking symptoms to get more.
What Are The Withdrawal Symptoms?
Withdrawal symptoms will appear very quickly. Those who take their medication as prescribed will often feel some signs if they miss a dose. Those abusing Gabapentin are likely to feel this a bit stronger and resort to any effort to obtain more.
These withdrawal symptoms and side effects include:
- Rebound pain
- Suicidal thoughts
- Mood Swings
- Flulike symptoms
- Hot Flashes
The quickness of withdrawal symptoms and the intensity can lead someone to a gabapentin overdose. This is because they will take more and more each time to relieve their symptoms. It also means that detox from the drug must be supervised by trained medical staff. Detoxing without appropriate medical support is extremely dangerous.
Gabapentin Vs. Roxicodone
Roxicodone is a brand of oxycodone; therefore, it is an opiate. Gabapentin is not an opiate and targets different neurotransmitters. Gabapentin is often used to treat nerve pain, and opiates are prescribed for chronic pain. When both are misused, they are equally as dangerous to detox from. Neurontin is easy to acquire, but Roxicodone is a controlled substance watched closely. Opioid users will often obtain Gabapentin to help them get a fix.
Sometimes a person abusing and misusing Gabapentin will use oxycodone to intensify their high. This becomes more dangerous as it can slow the heart rate and impede the respiratory system. There is also an increased risk of brain damage with long-term use.
Addiction Treatment Helps
Treating addiction is most helpful with the right team of experts to assist you. Addiction specialists are available to help every individual combat their addiction. Many have their own experiences with addiction, giving them better expertise. The recovery process is not easy but is achievable. When one is ready to enter treatment, they should contact us immediately. Our team is well-educated in the opioid crisis and addiction treatment. Everyone will be set up for success when choosing a successful organization.