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Soma Dependence – Signs of Soma Use Vs. Abuse, Tolerance

Some drugs are more likely to lead to  abuse because of the way they interact with other drugs. Soma is the trade name for the muscle relaxant carisoprodol, a drug that is only available by prescription in the United States but is not on the federal controlled substances list. When used by itself and as directed, Soma has only a minimal potential for abuse. It offers pain relief without the addictive potential of opioid-based pain medication, such as Vicodin.

Soma abuse often arises from the drug’s interaction with other drugs. The drug itself is not particularly addictive, but people can take Soma with other uncontrolled substances to simulate the effects of a highly addictive narcotic. It is this type of abuse that you have to watch for with friends and loved ones.

Is Soma Addictive?

Soma is used to relieve pain from muscle spasms and injuries. It relaxes muscles and has a sedative effect on the user. So, how addictive is Soma? It is not ordinarily addictive at all when used as directed, which is why the federal government has not placed carisoprodol on the controlled substances list. Problems arise, however, when a person’s metabolism and liver are particularly adept at metabolizing carisoprodol into its sister drug meprobamate.

Unlike carisoprodol, meprobamate is a controlled substance. It is a depressant that reduces anxiety. In a person with a system that readily metabolizes carisoprodol, large amounts result in a sleepy, hypnotic effect that could create a psychological addiction.

Understanding Soma Dependency and Tolerance

The problem with Soma does not lie in its addictive potential. Soma dependence is driven by the drug’s interaction with other drugs, like alcohol, codeine, and hydrocodone. Abusers use Soma to enhance the effectiveness of other drugs and to create cocktails that simulate the effects of narcotic substances, like heroin.

For example, Soma and codeine are often taken together to heighten the hypnotic effect of each individual drug. This combination is known on the street as a Soma coma. Likewise, Soma is often taken with the hydrocodone-based prescription drug Vicodin to produce heroin-like effects. On the street, this combination is called a Las Vegas cocktail. The propensity of individuals of all ages to use Soma in conjunction with other drugs to create narcotic effects has led many states to regulate Soma as a controlled substance, even though the federal government has yet to classify it that way.

Soma use by itself will not create a physical dependence, and will produce only a mild psychological dependence when the drug is taken in excessive dosages. The danger with Soma is in the dependencies that can be created when using it to heighten the effects of highly addictive drugs.

Effects/Side Effects

Short-term Effects of Soma

Like any drug, Soma can be abused to create a Soma “high.” If it is taken in excessive dosages, the drug can produce a hypnotic, lethargic effect that some people enjoy. This type of abuse can have significant physical side effects, including blurred vision, dizziness and loss of coordination. Coming down from Soma can cause chills, depression and vomiting.

Long-term Effects of Soma

Prolonged Soma abuse can significantly impact a person’s health. The drug can cause tightness in the chest and a racing heartbeat, damage organs and result in hospitalization.

Withdrawal and Detoxification

If you suspect Soma abuse by friends or loved ones, you should be aware of the symptoms of a Soma overdose and how to handle withdrawal. A person who has overdosed on Soma will typically experience difficulty breathing. There aren’t many other signposts that are specific to a Soma overdose, but you also have to be aware of other symptoms that may manifest if the person combined Soma with another drug. The Soma overdose alone can cause shock and result in the person slipping into a coma. Death is also a possibility.

Withdrawal from Soma is not as severe as withdrawal from a highly addictive narcotic. Soma withdrawal symptoms can include abdominal cramps, nausea, headaches, and insomnia. With Soma abuse, however, the withdrawal problem is rarely limited to the effects of one drug. Taking Soma with other drugs means that structured medical intervention is often required.

Treatment for Soma Addiction

Soma abuse treatment can be complex, if a person has been combining Soma with other drugs. People who are interested in finding inpatient or outpatient services should consider calling 1-888-803-9961 Who Answers? or filling out a quick contact form so that they can find the support they need.