Baclofen is a muscle relaxer with a wide array of potential uses ranging from helping to manage the symptoms of MS, to stopping chronic hiccuping. When a patient first starts taking this medication, the dosage begins small and gradually increases over a period of days or weeks. When coming off of the medication, the process must be performed in reverse. This is to avoid baclofen withdrawal. What are some baclofen withdrawal symptoms? Continue reading to learn more about baclofen withdrawal.
Baclofen withdrawal symptoms
Whether on a large or a small dose of baclofen, if the drug has been used for an extended period of time, a risk of withdrawal exists. The severity of the withdrawal will generally depend on the speed at which the use of baclofen is stopped. A very abrupt stop to the treatment may result in an acute withdrawal. In this case, it may be necessary to begin taking the drug again, and then gradually reduce the amount taken.
What are some baclofen withdrawal symptoms to look out for? The symptoms are very similar to withdrawal associated with alcohol or benzodiazepine drugs. A common withdrawal symptom is hallucinations including auditory, visual, and even tactile hallucinations. Delusions, confusion, and delirium are also possible. A person may lose conscious periodically or may have trouble sleeping at night. Mood swings and behavioral differences are also prevalent. Other mental symptoms include depersonalization, mania, psychosis, anxiety, and restlessness. Seizures, tremors, and muscle rigidity are also possible.
There are several factors involved which can help to prevent withdrawal. As was mentioned, the most important is to take the medication as prescribed, especially when it comes to getting off of the drug gradually. The other factor involves abuse. Some have used baclofen for recreational purposes in order to experience euphoria or for its empathogen effect. This sort of off-label use of the drug is dangerous and can result in an overdose or in withdrawal when the abuse is stopped or the drug runs out. Baclofen is absorbed quickly into the bloodstream and spread through the body quickly. It is also used up quickly. This makes the body susceptible to dependance.
In order to maximize the benefits of this drug and minimize the risk of withdrawal and overdose, only use baclofen for the conditions it has been produced to manage, and even then, only do so under the care of a physician.