Are you, or someone you know abusing Cyclobenzaprine to get high? Drugs like Flexeril are commonly misused recreationally and can lead to addiction.
Drug addiction can come in many forms from a variety of sources. Though some addictions start on the street, many begin within the home with prescription medications.
Addiction research estimates that 18 million Americans 12 and older have misused a prescription at least once in the past year, affecting teens and young adults. High school seniors abuse prescription drugs most commonly, after marijuana and alcohol.
Narrowing our focus, the drug Cyclobenzaprine carries a potential risk for abuse by Americans of all ages. Users chase the cyclobenzaprine high and risk becoming addicted to the drug.
What Should I Know About the Cyclobenzaprine High?
The most important thing to understand about cyclobenzaprine is that it produces a high when misused, which can ultimately pose a risk for addiction. Understanding the drug will help you seek proper treatment for yourself or your loved one.
What Is Cyclobenzaprine?
Cyclobenzaprine is a tricyclic antidepressant derivative, but because it is also a central nervous system depressant, it works much like a sedative.
Though created to treat depression, doctors often prescribe this medication as a muscle relaxant due to the way it blocks nerve signals to suppress the central nervous system. This drug does not come in over the counter form and always requires a prescription.
Most often, patients use this medication to treat muscle stiffness and pain. Doctors select this drug for physical therapy because it dulls the pain as patients move sore muscles and it does not interfere directly with the use of the muscle. It is often used to treat fibromyalgia as well.
Cyclobenzaprine denotes the generic name of this medication. Brand names include:
The various brands may differ in the way the drug is released from the tablet and the potency of the pill. Though doctors most often prescribed Flexeril at one time, the FDA discontinued the use of this brand in the United States.
This drug comes in a variety of dosages. Flexeril dosage is 5 or 10 milligrams, while Amrix comes in a 7.5mg extended release. Regardless of the dose each brand offers, patients should not exceed 30mg per day.
Street Names for Cyclobenzaprine
Sometimes people turn to the streets for this drug when they can no longer get it prescribed by their doctor. Street names include:
- Mellow Yellow
Street users most often seek Cyclone.
As the name suggests, muscle relaxers make a person feel relaxed. Some people develop a dependency due to the drug’s effects and the pleasurable way it makes them feel, both physically, and as an emotional escape tool.
Common side effects of the drug include:
- Dry mouth
- Diarrhea or constipation
Most of these side effects sound unpleasant, however, some people enjoy the tranquility associated with the Cyclobenzaprine high and ultimately become dependent upon the drug and its physical response in the body.
People often misuse this drug for a number of reasons because of the high created when the substance works with receptors in the brain.
People may start to abuse the drug when:
- They no longer feel the same effects from their current dose
- They enjoy the feeling the drug creates and take more to intensify the effects
- They hear it can make you high and steal or buy it from family or friends
This drug creates a physical dependency when people abuse it and over time, they may need it to sleep or even function normally.
Dangers of Dependency
Drug dependency can start to control the user’s life, which can inevitably lead to lying, stealing, the loss of employment, and more.
This medication can also negatively interact with alcohol and a host of other medications to produce annoying to serious side effects. If you do not drink or take other medications, this may not seem like a dire warning.
However, a more immediate danger exists. Abusing this drug increases the risk of anticholinergic toxidrome, as the acetylcholine builds up in the system due to the blockage of its receptors.
Symptoms of anticholinergic toxidrome include:
- Dilated pupils
- Difficulty urinating
- High blood pressure
- Tachycardia (high heart rate)
If left untreated, this can result in seizures, coma, and heart attack. It can be fatal, so call 911 if you notice somebody experiencing these symptoms while taking Cyclobenzaprine.
As people suffering from Cyclobenzaprine addiction build up a tolerance to the medication, they tend to increase the amount they take. Doing so increases their risk of developing anticholinergic toxidrome and overdosing on the drug. This makes treatment imperative.
As a person moves from use, to abuse, and into addiction, some changes usually become relatively apparent. They may seem very tired and moody, and it’s not uncommon to notice them sleeping more and having less interest in normal activities.
A person taking high amounts of this drug over a long period of time may start to suffer memory loss and hallucinations as well. This is sometimes followed by a deterioration of their muscle coordination as well, making them clumsier than usual.
As serious behavioral changes settle in, they might see their friends less frequently, suddenly seem to not have any money, or begin stealing to get more of the medication than their doctor will prescribe. They might also try going to different doctors, seeking more of the medication.
For people suffering from an addiction to muscle relaxers, it’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible. The severity of the addiction will depend on factors such as the person’s physiology, the amount of time they have used the medication, and the amount typically taken.
Medications like Cyclobenzaprine, Flexeril, or Amrix are frequently used to get high, and those who misuse them for this purpose run the risk of becoming addicted, or at the very least, increase the chances of developing serious health issues. It’s not worth taking the chance that it may become a regular habit.
Dr. Ronaye Calvert-Conley is the CEO and Founder of Revive Detox, a Joint Commission Accredited and Legit Script Certified Addiction Treatment Center in Los Angeles, CA. She earned her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Alliant International University in Los Angeles in 2007 and has extensive experience working in the addiction and recovery field and the LGBT community. To learn more about Dr. Calvert-Conley click here.