Barbiturates are a synthetic drug classified as a sedative hypnotic. Sedative hypnotics depress or slow down the body's functions. Often these drugs are referred to as tranquilizers, sleeping pills, or simply sedatives. Their effects range from reducing
anxiety to inducing sleep, depending on the amount taken.
There are several medical uses for barbiturates, besides controlling anxiety and sleep disturbances. They are also used as a mild form of anesthesia and to control peptic ulcers, high blood pressure and epileptic seizures.
The effects of barbiturates are much like the effects of alcohol. Small amounts produce calmness and relax muscles. Larger doses cause slurred speech, staggering, and poor judgement. High doses can cause unconsciousness
and death. Effects of prescribed doses of short-acting barbiturates such as secobarbital generally last 4 - 6 hours while effects from phenobarbital, a longer-acting barbiturate will last from 8 -12 hours.
Although barbiturates are sometimes prescribed for insomnia or anxiety, doctors are careful when prescribing them because they can become addictive. If your doctor has prescribed barbiturates
for you, he will monitor you carefully for signs of addiction and change or replace your medication if necessary. However, you should also familiarize yourself with the signs of barbiturate addiction so you won’t fall into an addictive pattern. talk to
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