Gabapentin is an effective medication in treating epilepsy, back pain and other nerve related conditions that can be painful to the individual suffering. It is typically prescribed to treat epilepsy, nerve pain (caused by illness’ such as diabetes, shingles or after an injury) or occasionally to treat migraines.
What is Gabapentin?
Gabapentin is used to treat a number of conditions. It can treat epilepsy, nerve pain (caused by illness’ such as diabetes, shingles or after an injury) or occasionally to treat migraines. The drug works by affecting the chemicals and nerves in the body that are responsible for seizures and transmitting certain types of pain. It is considered to be effective in treating epilepsy, back pain and other nerve related conditions that can be painful.
Gabapentin comes in capsules containing 300mg of the medicine. It can be taken by adults and children who are over the age of 6. The mixture contains liquid sodium and potassium, which means those who are on a sodium controlled diet or have kidneys which do not work well should speak to their doctor before taking any Gabapentin.
The amount of doses taken per day will vary, depending on your condition. The maximum dose taken per day is usually between 1800 and 3600mg. The dose used to treat children between the age of 6 and 12 will vary and be dependent on their weight.
How should Gabapentin be taken?
The capsules have been created to be swallowed whole with water. You can use the pill before or after eating. If you are taking numerous doses, try and space them out evenly throughout the day.
If you forget to take your dose of the medicine, you can take it as soon as you remember. However, do not take the forgotten pill if it is within 2 hours of the next dose. In these cases, you should skip the pill and continue as normal. Do not double dose. If you are suffering from epilepsy, it is important that you remember to take the medicine regularly as missed tablets can cause a seizure. If you have trouble remembering, you could set reminders on your phone or incorporate it into a part of your daily routine to help you.
You must follow the advice given to you by you doctor on how to administer Gabapentin. Below there are the general recommendations of when to take the medicine in accordance to different conditions.
On day one you will take just one 300mg tablet of Gabapentin. Day two of the course, it should be taken twice, and on day 3 it will be upped to three times. This will then be maintained on 300mg, 3 times a day. It may even be increased to up to 3600mg in some cases. To avoid seizures, the maximum amount of time between doses when taking it three times a day should be no longer than 12 hours.
- Nerve Pain
To treat nervous system pain in adults and children, Gabapentin will be taken in 3 doses daily. It may be prescribed for the treatment of neuropathic pain caused by diabetes and post herpetic neuralgia.
- Prevent Migraines
Gabapentin can sometimes be prescribed to treat migraines. The dosage to treat them can vary, but it can be up 2,400mg each day in 3 split dosages
Gabapentin dosage for chronic pain and back pain
Generally, doctors will begin a patients’ treatment on as low a dose of Gabapentin as possible, in order to reduce the risk of side effects. Once your optimum strength has been found, you will be kept on this. If you are taking this medicine to treat epilepsy you will probably be maintained and take Gabapentin for several years. For nerve pain, once the initial pain has been treated you will probably then continue a course for some months to ensure it doesn’t return.
The gabapentin dosage for chronic pain will depend on how severe the pain is that you are experiencing and the duration of which you have been suffering from it. It is essential that you provide our doctor with as much information as possible with regards to the pain you are suffering from, a background of when symptoms first arose and to ensure that there are no underlying issues in connection with your condition.
Possible Side Effects of Gabapentin
It is rare to experience side effects when taking Gabapentin. However, it is safest to be aware of potential side effects so that you can recognise them should they arise and seek medical advice. Below are listed some of the common and less common side effects experienced when taking the medicine. If you experience any of the more severe effects, seek immediate medical attention. It is always best to take the medication box with any left tablets in if you are going in to for a consultation or emergency appointment regarding side effects.
Common Side Effects
- Feeling dizzy or clumsy
- Nausea or vomiting
- Being more susceptible to infection
- Memory problems
- Change in mood
- Swelling of the arms and legs
- Distorted vision
- Increase in weight
Uncommon Side Effects
- Tarry stools
- Symptoms of a cold such as chills, cough, sore throat
- Change in mood depression, irritability, confusion
- Swelling of the arms or legs
- Ulcers or sores on the inside of the lips or mouth
- Unusual bleeding, bruising, tiredness or weakness
In rare cases patients taking Gabapentin can suffer from a severe allergic reaction to the medicine. If you experience any of the warning symptoms you MUST contact an emergency service such as 111 or 999 immediately. The signs of a severe allergic reaction are:
- Developing a skin rash which is itchy, red, swollen, blistered or peeling
- Your chest or throat feeling tight. This can also be displayed through wheezing.
- Experiencing difficulty in breathing or talking
- Your facial extremities become swollen i.e. you mouth, face, lips, tongue or throat.
How can I buy Gabapentin online in the UK?
If you are a valid UK citizen and have a prescription from a doctor, you will be able to purchase Gabapentin online in the UK with us, Medicine Direct. If you do not yet have a prescription for Gabapentin, you can fill in one of our health questionnaires which will be reviewed by one of our doctors. After assessing your answers, the doctors will then prescribe you the medicine if they deem it appropriate to do so.
What are Gabapentin tablets for?
Gabapentin is used for a range of things. It can be prescribed to treat epilepsy, nerve pain or migraines. The dosage and strength you will take will be dependent on your condition. Our UK based doctors may also prescribe gabapentin for back pain if you have previously had this medication and experienced positive results.
Is Gabapentin safe to take if you are pregnant or breastfeeding?
It is not generally recommended to use Gabapentin whilst pregnant or breastfeeding. However, if you become pregnant whilst taking the medicine for epilepsy do not stop taking it until you have spoken with your doctor. This is very important as, if you stop it may trigger a seizure which would be very damaging for the baby. If you are pregnant and taking Gabapentin, you will need to take more than the recommended 400mcg of folic acid per day to help the unborn baby to grow normally.
How long does it take Gabapentin to work?
The speed of results will depend on the reason you are taking Gabapentin. Some patients have reported feeling positive effects from as early as a few days. It takes up to 2 months for a full effect to be made.
Can you drink alcohol whilst taking Gabapentin?
It is possible to drink alcohol whilst taking Gabapentin. However, whilst you are beginning the course it is best to stop drinking alcohol so that you can judge how the medicine affects you.
What happens if you stop taking Gabapentin?
You should not stop taking Gabapentin without first consulting your doctor. It can cause serious problems and complications, especially if you have epilepsy. This is because the medicine can build up in your body which means that if you suddenly stop taking it you can suffer from big withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal syptoms can include anxiety, problems sleeping, nausea, pain or sweating. Your doctor will create a schedule for you to safely gradually reduce, and then stop, your consumption of Gabapentin.
Gabapentin Recreational use and abuse
The doctors at Medicine Direct will only prescribe gabapentin if you have been prescribed this medication before and experienced positive results. If our UK doctor prescribes you with gabapentin, we will keep a record of your purchase history and medical information to ensure that you are not purchasing the medicine too frequently.
If our doctor suspects that you may be using gabapentin for recreational use, they will reject your prescription and allow no further purchase of the medication or similar medications.
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