For as long as we can prove, there have been medications used to treat ailments ranging from pain to insomnia. You can find scriptures dating back to 3,000 B.C. showing that opioids were used to treat discomfort. If you fast forward to today, these same ailments still affect our society. Unfortunately, due to an explosion in population, we are affected at a much higher rate. 

Sleep disorders have become more prevalent due to technological advances. We have always searched for the most efficient means to treat these problems. Insomnia, anxiety, and seizures are all issues that drugs like Seconal are designed to prevent. While it can be useful to a certain extent, it can create worse problems.

Barbiturates are among the oldest forms of modernized treatment designed to treat sleep and anxiety disorders. A relatively high percentage of the population became addicted to the drugs, which caused an epidemic decades ago. 

It was meant to treat those with an overactive nervous system and provide them relief for their symptoms. It is designed to cause anxiolytic and feelings of sleepiness. Unfortunately, an unintended consequence of barbiturates was euphoria, which makes it more prone to being abused.

Seconal was extremely popular in the 1960s before benzodiazepines entered into the picture. Barbiturate prescriptions have declined sharply over the years as the medical community expressed concern about the drug’s addictive highs. Some people abuse Seconal to help them come down from a cocaine or methamphetamine high. It can alleviate the symptoms of a stimulant crash and allow users to fall asleep.

Seconal is so dangerous that is has been used in physician-assisted suicide. When a drug is explicitly used for death, it should indicate the dangers that are present as a result. Seconal withdrawal, or barbiturates in general, is not something that should be taken lightly.

How Seconal Affects the Brain

Seconal, as with most barbiturates, will affect your body similar to other depressant drugs. It binds to receptors in the brain and increases the neurotransmitter gamma-Aminobutyric acid or GABA. 

GABA is a naturally produced chemical that slows down nerve activity in the central nervous system (CNS). The purpose of Seconal is to relieve stress, relax muscles, and alleviate tension in the body. It also inhibits nerve impulses that may cause these feelings naturally.

Seconal will copy the effects of GABA and bind to receptors to cause relaxation. It stimulates the receptors and produces excessive amounts of the neurotransmitter. Prolonged use, as we’ve described, can lead to dependence and addiction. 

If you try to stop using Seconal on your own, it has a high probability of being fatal. While it may sound tempting to stop on your own, or if you have dealt with withdrawal symptoms before, you should never underestimate Seconal detox.

What to Expect From Seconal Withdrawal

Seconal is a central nervous system depressant that tricks the brain into believing there is enough GABA for the brain to function. Unfortunately, there is only a small difference between a prescribed dose and overdose when it comes Seconal. 

If you are prescribed the drug, you must follow the instructions given by your doctor. If you have become addicted to Seconal, abrupt cessation can be dangerous. The withdrawal symptoms may be extremely uncomfortable and could result in death.

Seconal withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Restlessness
  • Irritability
  • Tremors
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Nausea
  • Stomach cramps
  • Vomiting
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Hallucinations
  • High fever
  • Seizures
  • Heart failure
  • Death

What are the Stages of Seconal Withdrawal Timeline

Seconal withdrawal symptoms are going to vary depending on the severity of the addiction. Minor withdrawal symptoms will start eight to 12 hours after your last dose, but the significant symptoms will occur around 16 hours of the previous dose. The symptoms may last up to five days.

At the 15-day point, the intensity of the symptoms will start to diminish, but they may continue for months or years depending on certain factors. 

These factors will determine the length and severity of withdrawal:

  • Tolerance level
  • Age and physiology
  • Co-occurring mental illness
  • Length of time Seconal was used
  • The last dose before stopping Seconal
  • The average dose the user was consuming

Minor Seconal withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Tremors
  • Dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Muscle twitching
  • Distorted vision
  • Weakness
  • Restlessness
  • Low blood pressure
  • Vomiting

Severe Seconal withdrawal symptoms may consist of:

Seconal Withdrawal Timeline

  • Days 1-3: The first symptoms someone will experience is an increase in their heart rate, nausea, insomnia, vomiting, fatigue, anxiety, and sweating. By the third day, the symptoms will reach their peak. The most critical part of this stage is the potential for seizures. Medical detox is essential for your safety.
  • Days 4-7: It is good news if you have reached this stage. The physical and psychological symptoms will be nearing normal. Emotional symptoms, however, can be present. It may still be difficult to sleep, eat, and keep your mood stable.
  • Weeks 1 and 2: The symptoms will, for the most part, subside, and you will be able to start focusing on your new life. Emotional symptoms will continue for a few weeks as your body stabilizes.

Why Should I Detox?

Abstaining from any drug comes with its challenges, but Seconal provides a whole new level of dangers that you must overcome.

You must seek out professional help if you are trying to stop barbiturates. 

Medication-assisted detox programs are designed to deliver you to the other side safely with the least amount of pain.

Detox is intended to mitigate dangers and plan for any unplanned emergencies.

If you are serious about your sobriety, you must go about it in a way that is not harmful.

Person having trouble sleeping with a glow in the dark clock on their nightstand

What is the Next Treatment Step?

While medical detox is a significant step in the right direction, it isn’t nearly enough to compete with the battle of addiction. The continuum of care refers to a set of intensity levels regarding addiction treatment. 

Entering residential or outpatient treatment will allow you to get to the root of your addiction. Therapy will offer you the necessary tools to help you cope with your triggers. If you are serious about long-term care, you must complete a process designed to give you a better life.

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