What Is Gabapentin?
Gabapentin is a prescription medication given to patients primarily to treat seizures stemming from epilepsy. This medicine can also be given to patients with restless leg syndrome, or with certain types of nerve pain conditions resulting from diabetes. It’s believed to work by stabilizing levels of GABA in the user’s brain and body. GABA is a neurotransmitter responsible for calming nerve activity. When certain electrical impulses are firing between nerves, it causes seizures and other symptoms. This medicine is available in generic and brand-name forms, as well as immediate and extended-release variations. Gabapentin is classified as an anticonvulsant. As well as calming nerve messages, it may reduce pain sensitivity.
While gabapentin does have therapeutic benefits, it also has possible side effects and risks associated with its use. One of the most common side effects is drowsiness. Many people who use gabapentin to experience drowsiness, slowed thinking and motor skills, as well as possible drowsiness. Other common side effects include nausea and vomiting, double vision, swelling and unusual eye movements. These side effects tend to dissipate after using the medicine for a few weeks.
Severe side effects can occur with gabapentin, although they’re rare. One area of concern patients are warned about when they’re prescribed this medicine is the potential for changes in mood. Gabapentin can cause new or increasing anxiety, as well as suicidal thoughts or tendencies. Anytime mood changes are recognized in someone on gabapentin, it should be reported to a medical professional.
Gabapentin’s recreational use as a means to get high has been on the increase in recent years. At high doses or when used in ways other than what’s prescribed, gabapentin may create a feeling of euphoria or sedation that users could find desirable. Despite this risk, it’s not considered addictive, and gabapentin isn’t currently a controlled substance in the U.S. There is also the potential for dependence, which is why it’s important for people to understand the half-life of gabapentin to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
Have more questions about Gabapentin abuse?Read the most frequently asked questions
Seeking addiction treatment can feel overwhelming. We know the struggle, which is why we're uniquely qualified to help.
Your call is confidential, and there's no pressure to commit to treatment until you're ready. As a voluntary facility, we're here to help you heal -- on your terms. Our sole focus is getting you back to the healthy, sober life you deserve, and we are ready and waiting to answer your questions or concerns 24/7.Speak with an Intake Coordination Specialist now.352.771.2700