What Are The Symptoms Of A Phenobarbital Overdose?

Phenobarbital, a prescription drug with sedative effects, can be life-changing for people struggling with seizure disorders or crippling anxiety or insomnia. But like many other medications, phenobarbital comes with certain risks. If the medication is used other than as advised, you can experience adverse effects, including possible phenobarbital overdose. What are the symptoms of a phenobarbital overdose?

Protect yourself or a loved one from the dangers of phenobarbital by getting help from Promises Right Step. We offer residential and outpatient treatment options because we believe in providing numerous levels of care. To learn more about our comprehensive addiction treatment programs, give us a call at 17135283709 or fill out our online form.

What Is Phenobarbital?

Phenobarbital is a prescription drug belonging to the barbiturate category. Some brand names for phenobarbital include:

  • Luminal
  • Sezaby
  • Sulfoton

The medication acts on the central nervous system to slow down activity in the brain. This action serves to prevent or control seizures in people with epilepsy. Phenobarbital can also induce sedation, making it beneficial for those struggling with insomnia or anxiety disorders.

The Dangers of Phenobarbital

While phenobarbital can help people effectively manage seizures, insomnia, and anxiety, the drug can pose a threat when misused. Some of the risks associated with phenobarbital use include:

Respiratory Depression

The sedative effects of phenobarbital depress the central nervous system, which can slow your breathing. Taken in high doses, this can lead to respiratory depression or breathing slow enough to lead to harm and even fatality.


Over time, you may feel the need to take larger doses of phenobarbital to achieve the same effect. This indicates a tolerance to the prescribed dosage.


Prolonged use of phenobarbital can lead to dependence on the medication, making it harder to stop using it without the help of addiction treatment professionals.


Taking larger doses to overcome tolerance to the drug can result in phenobarbital overdose, which can be deadly.

What Are the Symptoms of a Phenobarbital Overdose?

What are the symptoms of a phenobarbital overdose? Recognizing the symptoms of a phenobarbital overdose is imperative so you can get help as quickly as possible to prevent fatality. Some signs and symptoms to be aware of are:

  • Extreme drowsiness or sedation
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Slurred speech
  • Extremely slow or shallow breathing
  • Bluish tint to the fingertips or lips
  • Loss of coordination
  • Muscle weakness or limpness

Without prompt medical attention, phenobarbital overdose can be life-threatening.

What to Do in the Event of a Phenobarbital Overdose

If you suspect that someone has overdosed on phenobarbital, you must act quickly. The following steps can help save a life:

  • Call 911 for emergency help
  • Stay with the person until medical professionals arrive
  • Provide emergency technicians with as much information as possible about the person, including what you believe they have ingested, how much, and when
  • Stay on the line with 911 to listen for any instructions they provide, such as how to position the person’s body or whether they should be moved at all

A phenobarbital overdose can be scary, but by remaining as calm as you can and reaching out for emergency assistance as soon as possible, you can give your loved one a second chance at life.

Call Promises Right Step to Overcome Phenobarbital Addiction

Phenobarbital can be an effective medication when used appropriately. However, taking the medication too often or in larger doses than advised can lead to devastating consequences. Recognizing when someone is having an overdose and calling for help right away is crucial. But it is even better to get your loved one help before an overdose occurs. If someone you know is struggling with phenobarbital dependence, contact Promises Right Step online or call at 17135283709. Our full range of treatment programs can help your loved one break free from addiction and move on toward a healthier future.

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