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How Long Does Gabapentin Withdrawal Last?

What are the most serious side effects of gabapentin?

Gabapentin, also known by its brand name Neurontin, is a prescription painkiller with anti-convulsive properties. The FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) approved gabapentin for the treatment of epileptic disorders and neuropathic pain. Medical professionals also prescribe gabapentin as an “off-label” treatment for restless leg syndrome, fibromyalgia, seizures, and/ or hot flashes. To date, medications containing gabapentin are not currently scheduled as controlled substances by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The chemical makeup of gabapentin is known to have fewer addictive qualities than opioid medications used to treat similar ailments. However, as is true with any medication, there are risk factors and potential side effects associated with taking gabapentin which exponentially increase when the substance is abused. The longer an individual abuses gabapentin the more her brain relies on functioning with it present in her system, eventually resulting in the inability of one’s brain to function properly in its absence. 


Any individual that needs treatment for gabapentin abuse or addiction must first undergo detox. Detox is the process that rids one’s body of all foreign substances. There are a variety of detox methods with a wide range of support. Individuals that are detoxing from gabapentin are encouraged to undergo a detox method with the maximum amount of support, such as a medically supervised detox. It is not uncommon for individuals to taper off gabapentin. Tapering off medication is when the prescribing medical professional slowly decreases the dosage of the medication that an individual takes over time. This is the safest method for an individual detoxing from gabapentin but will likely extend the duration of her detox process. Tapering off the substance will allow one’s body to slowly acclimate to the reduced amount of medication present in her system and can lessen some of the discomforts of the detox process. 

Withdrawal Symptoms

Stopping gabapentin abruptly can lead to severe withdrawal symptoms and dangerous side effects. Every person will experience a unique combination of withdrawal symptoms with varying levels of severity when it comes to detoxing from gabapentin. Common examples of withdrawal symptoms could include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Headache
  • Sweating
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Dizziness
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Nausea
  • Pain 

The exact duration an individual will experience withdrawal symptoms when detoxing from gabapentin will differ. Some studies have indicated that gabapentin withdrawal can last up to five days or longer, but the precise duration has not been well established in human studies. 

For Information and Support 

Substance abuse and addiction can be incredibly dangerous and can result in severe short and long-term consequences. If you or someone you know is suffering from substance abuse or addiction, please get help as soon as possible. The earlier you seek support, the sooner you and your loved ones can return to leading happy, healthy, and fulfilling lives. There is no reason to go through this alone, and we are here to help. Please feel free to reach out to us for further information or with any questions regarding substance abuse or addiction. We are available anytime via telephone at: 213-389-9964, or you can always email us at:

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