What is Metaxalone?
Metaxalone, brand name Skelaxin, is a quick-acting muscle relaxant usually given to individuals suffering from acute low back pain, people who have suffered injuries to their lower back, and people who have illnesses that cause serious physical pain, including painful musculoskeletal conditions including strains, sprains, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, bursitis, and arthritis.
Metaxalone comes in 400-milligram tablets or 800-milligram tablets, and a typical adult dose of this medication is usually around 800 milligrams 3 or 4 times per day. You may cut a Skelaxin metaxalone tablet in half or crush it. It does not matter if it is taken with or without food. This medication works by inhibiting the transmission of discontinuous messages in the spinal cord, and through central nervous system depression, it reduces the level of excitement in muscle cells, relaxing the body via neuromuscular pathways.
This medication is a centrally acting schedule IV drug. This means it reduces heart rate and blood pressure, and can be prescribed by a licensed doctor or a pharmacist, but should be controlled due to its potential for abuse and addiction. It is not approved for long-term use by the FDA, even when used at the recommended dose, for this reason.
Skelaxin (metaxalone) has several noticeable side effects, including:
- Constant sedation, tiredness, and drowsiness
- Fatigue and weakness
- Difficulty concentrating and focusing
- Decreased blood pressure
- Dry mouth
Some people also experience headaches, irritability, nausea, and vomiting when they take this medication. It is important to never take this medication with other drugs without clearing it with your doctor and pharmacist, as this may result in depressed breathing, dangerously low heart rate, coma, and death. Even common tricyclic antidepressants can cause serotonin syndrome, a serious drug reaction that can cause diarrhea, muscle rigidity, seizures, and death if untreated. Muscle relaxers should never be used with alcohol or recreational drugs, so it is important that you are honest with your doctor about any substance use when being prescribed this medication.
Signs of Metaxalone Abuse and Addiction
It may be in your best interest to contact a professional drug rehab facility or your doctor if you notice the following signs of metaxalone abuse and addiction in yourself or one of your loved ones:
- “Doctor shopping”, or faking injuries and back pain to obtain prescriptions for Skelaxin (metaxalone)
- Lying about losing your prescription or making up other excuses for why you ran out so quickly
- Spending a lot of time planning how to get more of the medication
- Stealing medication from other people’s drug cabinets
- Taking metaxalone when you do not need it, or taking more than you were prescribed
- Feeling like you need to take metaxalone just to get through the day normally
- Noticing withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking metaxalone or even after a missed dose
- Being unable to stop yourself from taking more of the drug
- Continuing to abuse Skelaxin (metaxalone) even when others notice and say something about it
- Becoming socially withdrawn and giving up hobbies and other fun activities due to drug addiction
- Your performance is starting to suffer at work, you are having trouble in your relationships, or you have health problems due to your drug abuse
Metaxalone Withdrawal Symptoms
Common metaxalone withdrawal symptoms are:
- General malaise
- Discomfort in the body
Hallucinations, seizures, and other adverse effects may occur in the case of serious addiction.
Long Term Side Effects of Metaxalone Abuse
Taking metaxalone can affect kidney and liver functions, resulting in serious renal or hepatic issues like jaundice, anemia, painful urination, liver damage, and kidney damage. These issues are exacerbated when the medication is used with alcohol or other drugs.
Metaxalone can also cause serious blood pressure changes if taken with certain high-fat foods, which can result in extreme drowsiness and dizziness, fainting, and memory issues.
Metaxalone Addiction Treatment
TruPath is a nationwide network of rehabilitation centers, that provides the full continuum of drug addiction treatment. From medical detox to inpatient rehab, and outpatient treatment programs like partial hospitalization programs (PHP) and intensive outpatient programs (IOP), our rehab programs are customized to best suit each person as an individual. Treatment options include:
- Behavioral therapy like cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy
- Medical care and medication management services
- Individual therapy and group therapy
- Family therapy
- Psychodynamic therapy
- Dual diagnosis for co-occurring disorders and mental health issues
- Experiential therapy
- Relapse prevention
- Case management services
- Holistic treatments including yoga and meditation
- Connections to 12-step programs, aftercare programs, and alumni services
Call TruPath today to learn more about treatment for metaxalone addiction or other substance use disorder. We are here for you and can help you stop abusing this medication, heal the underlying causes of addiction, and gain relapse prevention tools that will last a lifetime as you grow stronger and take back control over your life.