Seconal Sodium Abuse

Seconal Sodium AbuseSeconal Sodium is the brand name for the generic secobarbital, which is a barbiturate drug used in the short-term treatment of insomnia. It is also often used as a sedative before surgery. The medication should only be used for short-term treatments as Seconal Sodium is a barbiturate hypnotic.

When used properly, Seconal Sodium causes drowsiness in order to induce sleep. When used in the treatment of insomnia, Seconal Sodium is generally only prescribed to people who are already taking barbiturate medications as healthcare professionals tend to avoid prescribing Seconal Sodium to new patients. This process is in place simply due to the medication’s high potential for dependence and addiction.

Abuses of Seconal Sodium

Seconal Sodium can be highly addictive as it affects the central nervous system to cause a physical and psychological addiction. The drug slows down the brain, which relieves anxiety and makes the individual sleepy. Withdrawal symptoms can be fairly immediate, instigating the physical addiction. In fact, addiction can emerge in less than a week of taking Seconal Sodium.

The “high” that can be achieved with Seconal Sodium is very similar to alcohol intoxication. Individuals may also use the drug to counteract the effects of stimulant drugs, creating a cocktail of drugs that can be life-threatening. Such users tend to take more than the safe amount to achieve a desired “high”, resulting in abuse of the drug. Over time, the brain develops a need for Seconal Sodium, making it very difficult for the user to function without it.

Effects of Seconal Sodium

As a barbiturate, Seconal Sodium slows the activity of the brain and the central nervous system. It also enhances the action of a neurotransmitter called GABA in the brain. The drug is anesthetic, anticonvulsant and hypnotic. It is usually used to treat epilepsy, insomnia and given as an anesthetic in surgery, but it has also been used for depression, although rarely.

Certain side effects can include unwanted sleepiness, trouble waking up, dizziness, excitation, headache, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea, or vomiting. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: mental/mood changes, including agitation, confusion, depression, hallucinations, thoughts of suicide, nightmares, slurred speech, staggering walk/clumsiness, double vision, and memory problems.

Withdrawal of Seconal Sodium

Seconal Sodium depresses the respiratory and central nervous system functions, increasing the risk of building a tolerance to the drug very rapidly. For those who are dependent or addicted to Seconal Sodium, withdrawal symptoms can occur almost immediately after the last dose.

Withdrawal symptoms associated with cessation of Seconal Sodium can include, but are not limited to:

  • Anxiety
  • Muscle pain
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Elevated respiration rate
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures

Treatment of Seconal Sodium Addiction

Seconal Sodium can be life-threatening, even if it is prescribed by a physician. For those taking the barbiturate for its intoxication effects, dependence occurs rapidly, making it difficult to discontinue the drug. Even those under a doctor’s care can develop an addiction in less than a week, making this drug a very difficult one to safely administer.

Seconal Sodium is meant for short-term use only and extending use or increases dosage as a result of dependence can create significant problems for a person once they seek to discontinue the medication.

As this dependence can be both psychological and physiological, it is recommended that users taper off the medication slowly under the care of a board-certified physician and board-certified addiction psychiatrist. Entering a quality center for 24/7 comfortable detoxification treatment will ensure the safe and complete removal of the drug from the body. The individual can then receive behavioral treatment to learn how to function without the drug.

Seconal Sodium addicts are also likely to work on their relationship with sleep as part of their treatment. They can be taught how to use specific tools like yoga, meditation and exercise as well as diet and nutrition, changing caffeine intake, creating new patterns and counseling to determine the cause for taking Seconal Sodium in the first place.

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