Fioricet Tolerance and Addiction

Fioricet with Codeine is supplied in capsule form for oral administration.

Each capsule contains:

Butalbital, USP ………………. 50 mg
Acetaminophen, USP ……………….300 mg
Caffeine, USP ……………….40 mg
Codeine Phosphate, USP ……………….30 mg

Tolerance and addiction may also occur with butalbital. Tolerance means that a person needs more of the medication to achieve headache relief. Addiction to butalbital is characterized by persistent behaviors, like compulsions, to take a butalbital-containing medication.

These behaviors impair their life in some way, negatively impacting relationships and/or everyday functioning.

Is Fioricet Addictive?

Although it’s only a prescription headache medication, Fioricet has the potential to cause addiction.

If a person follows their prescription guidelines and uses the medication correctly, the risks of addiction are low. However, if someone takes too much Fioricet, they may develop tolerance to its effects.

A person with tolerance to a certain dose of Fioricet will require higher doses of the medication to alleviate their headaches.

When a person with tolerance starts to take more Fioricet, possibly by obtaining more prescriptions, they may eventually become dependent on it. In other words, they may feel unable to get through the day without taking Fioricet, and if they stop, they will experience symptoms of withdrawal. These symptoms arise because their body has grown accustomed to Fioricet in high doses.

If a Fioricet-dependent person attempts to weather withdrawal alone, it’s likely they will take Fioricet again just to relieve the symptoms. This is a hallmark characteristic of addiction. Anyone who compulsively abuses Fioricet to avoid withdrawal likely has an addiction to Fioricet. Additionally, people with an addiction to Fioricet will experience cravings for the medication which further compel them to keeping using it.

Moreover, the ingredient butalbital is an addictive substance in its own right. Butalbital can cause someone to “get high” because it’s a central nervous system depressant. Since butalbital is part of Fioricet, it is possible for someone to abuse Fioricet as a recreational drug. At high doses, Fioricet can intoxicate a person in a manner similar to alcohol. People who abuse Fioricet for this purpose have as much of a risk of developing an addiction as they would have if they repeatedly use an illegal drug.

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