Carisoprodol, also known by the brand name Soma, is a prescription medication used to treat muscle spasms and severe muscle pain. However, due to its psychoactive (sedative and anxolytic/anti-anxiety/relaxant) effects, its abuse is becoming a more prominent problem.
The effects of carisoprodol are relatively short in duration. Users may quickly find themselves taking more and more to prolong the pleasurable sensation it elicits, quickly leading them towards dependence and addiction.
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Carisoprodol Abuse: Key Facts
Carisoprodol abuse can have serious consequences. Addiction to this drug can severely diminish quality of life and the health and wellness of the person suffering from it.
It was once considered to have a low addiction rating, but more evidence is emerging proving that it is more addictive than originally thought.
The Drug Enforcement Administration has released statistics that show that there were almost 6,500 cases involving carisoprodol abuse reported to the American Association of Poison Control Centers in 2012, two of which resulted in death.
Additionally, the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reported that more than 3 million people used carisoprodol recreationally at some point in their lives.
- Abdominal discomfort.
- Muscle spasms.
- Inability to sleep without using the drug.
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Signs and Symptoms of Abuse
If you believe that someone you care about may be addicted to carisoprodol, check for these telltale indications of abuse:
- Poor physical coordination, loss of balance.
- Flushing of the skin.
- Agitation when not taking the drug.
- Euphoric or drunk demeanor.
Drug Combinations: A Recipe for Addiction
Carisoprodol is often prescribed in combination with other drugs. For example, it may be coupled with codeine, or a benzodiazepine drug like Xanax. Even when taken medically, these combinations can be highly addictive and prescription use can quickly turn into abuse. Carisoprodol amplifies the effects of other sedatives and pain-relieving medications, so it is often abused with other medications/prescriptions.
Illicit users of carisoprodol often combine the drug with substances like alcohol or other street drugs to enhance its psychoactive effects. Doing so is dangerous and creates a high risk of addiction.
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Effects of Abuse
People who are struggling with a carisoprodol addiction may find themselves experiencing a range of unpleasant effects, some of which occur immediately and others after continued use. Effects can include:
- Impairment of physical or mental capabilities.
- Increase in heart rate.
- Seizures (typically associated with drug combinations).
- Rebound anxiety and/or insomnia.
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If you or someone you love is wrestling with carisoprodol addiction, there are treatment options available that can help with overcoming the hurdle of dependency.
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The following are all helpful methods to overcoming substance abuse:
- Attending 12-step meetings.
- Getting treatment at a medical rehabilitation center.
- Participating in group or individual psychotherapy.
Most often, someone who is addicted to a prescription drug like carisoprodol should first get care at a treatment center. If you have a prolonged, severe addiction to the drug, treatment at a residential rehabilitation center will likely be best.
A residential rehab center helps the patient through the detox process, during which the patient is weaned off his physical dependency on the drug. These centers also provide in-depth, 24/7 care for the duration of the patient's stay, which is generally up to 3 months (but can be longer for especially serious cases).
However, there are many paths that lead to recovery. If you would like more information on available recovery options, call 1-888-744-0069Who Answers?. Representatives are waiting to help you begin the process of finding treatment.
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Teen Carisoprodol Abuse
Teen carisoprodol abuse is becoming increasingly common and is worrisome because it is so commonly abused with other prescription and/or street drugs.
Many teens feel that misusing prescription medication is safer than using street drugs, although this is often not at all the case, especially when several drugs are mixed.
Carisoprodol abuse can have serious negative effects, and many teens do not realize the full extent of the danger.
To read more about carisoprodol abuse, see the following articles:
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