What is a Fioricet High? Can Fioricet Cause Abuse ?

Fioricet is a prescription medication used to manage frequent or uncontrolled tension headaches.  Fioricet may be helpful for someone struggling with tension headaches (although evidence supporting its effectiveness for recurring headaches is lacking); however, it must be used cautiously.

You can not be addictive to Fioricet but you can depend on it.

Fioricet is a known drug of abuse that has the potential to bring about serious physical and mental health complications. Anyone who is unable to control their Fioricet use should consider substance abuse treatment. By consulting with an addiction professional or attending substance abuse treatment, a person can quit Fioricet safely and learn to address the thoughts and behaviors that keep them using in spite of the harm that doing so causes.

One of the key active ingredients responsible for the so-called Fioricet high is butalbital.

Butalbital is a barbiturate that’s considered short-to-intermediate acting, and it can relieve symptoms of anxiety, reduce pain, relax muscles and act as a sedative. There are many neuropsychological effects of butalbital, some of which aren’t clearly understood to this day.

The belief is that the Fioricet high is caused by the fact that butalbital can increase the inhibition neurotransmitters in the brain called GABA. It can bind to certain receptor sites and ultimately central nervous system activity is depressed. This can lead to what feels like a buzz or to some people possibly a high.

So what does a Fioricet high feel like?

This article is not good. Fioricet can not be addictive because you will be die if you abuse fioircet.

For the most part, it’s likely to feel similar to other central nervous system depressant effects. There is some evidence pointing to the fact that taking Fioricet can feel similar to the effects of drinking alcohol, particularly when the prescription drug is taken at higher levels.

The following are some of the common experiences that people say come along with a Fioricet high:

  • Fioricet can reduce anxiety and some people with anxiety disorders may take it for this reason, although this is not what it’s approved for. There is the potential for Fioricet to decrease feelings of anxiety even when it’s taken at a normal dose, and this is because of the impact of butalbital on GABA. For some people, a Fioricet high is actually just equated with a reduction in anxiety.
  • Depersonalization may be another effect of the so-called Fioricet high, although this isn’t necessarily something people find pleasant. It can lead to feelings of confusion and sluggishness, and this is one of the reasons Fioricet isn’t frequently used
  • Drowsiness and sedation may also be side effects of a Fioricet high, particularly when it’s taken in larger amounts. While Fioricet has a stimulant component which is caffeine when larger doses are taken the central nervous system depressant effects may override the stimulant effects.
  • Some people may obtain a sense of euphoria when taking Fioricet, although it’s not as pronounced as what would occur with something like prescription opioids. As with most other drugs, if someone does experience euphoria with a Fioricet high, it’s likely to dissipate after using the drug a few times as they build a tolerance.
  • While not everyone who takes Fioricet says they experience euphoria, some people say that it does improve their mood. This can be because of the GABA-related effects of butalbital, but also the inclusion of the acetaminophen and the caffeine. There’s also the element of stimulation that can occur with caffeine, so some people may feel this is a Fioricet high when they experience it.
  • Lightheadedness and dizziness are common side effects of Fioricet, and these may also be symptoms that people associate with a Fioricet high.
  • One of the primary reasons people will abuse Fioricet and take high doses is to achieve relaxation, which occurs because of the slowdown of the central nervous system. People who take this drug may feel relaxed and also tranquil. Some of this is because of the loosening up of muscles the drug can stimulate.

Not everyone will associate the use of this drug with the Fioricet high. Some of the factors that determine whether or not a person will experience a Fioricet high can include the dosage they take and their tolerance. Newer users may be more likely to experience what they would describe as the Fioricet high. Other factors that could influence this include the specific formulation of the drug and whether or not other substances are taken with it.

Some people may try to extract the butalbital from Fioricet and remove it from the caffeine and acetaminophen for a greater high. This is not only drug abuse, but might not even achieve the effects the person is looking for.

It’s important to realize that there can be serious and deadly consequences associated with trying to achieve a Fioricet high. This can include addiction, adverse reactions, brain damage, emotional crashes, and overdose. Since Fioricet has acetaminophen, if people abuse it to get high they may also sustain liver damage or failure.

What Are the Withdrawal Symptoms?

Chronic excessive use of Fioricet may result in the development of significant physiological dependence. The unpleasant withdrawal syndrome that arises when a dependent person tries to quit can inhibit them from seeking the help they need to get off the drug. Symptoms can range from mild to very serious.

Fioricet withdrawal often begins with headaches, which people may see as a common headache instead of a withdrawal symptom. Unknowingly, they may use more Fioricet to manage the headache and restart the cycle of abuse.7 Someone who makes it past the initial headache stage of Fioricet withdrawal may have additional symptoms like:

  • Hand tremors.
  • Fast or jerky movements.
  • Anxiety.
  • Rapid pulse.
  • Hallucinations.
  • Nausea/vomiting.
  • Grand mal seizures.

Severe butalbital withdrawal symptoms may begin about 16 hours after the last dose.1 The symptoms will then peak on the second day and will typically show a noteworthy improvement by day 5 and then gradually improve over the course of about 2 weeks.1

Seeking professional treatment for Fioricet withdrawal is crucial, not only because it will alleviate your discomfort to prevent you from relapsing, but also because withdrawal from this drug is associated with sometimes-lethal complications. As many as 30% of those who attempt withdrawal from drugs like Fioricet without treatment will experience a seizure.6

Additionally, withdrawal can spark intense depression, leading to suicidal thoughts and attempts. Depression may be worse among people stuck in patterns of frequent intoxication and repeated withdrawal attempts.


What is Withdrawal from Fioricet Like?

Fioricet is a combination medication that contains three medicines: butalbital, acetaminophen, and caffeine.

Doctors prescribe this medicine to people who struggle with headaches, particularly tension headaches. It’s the 187th most-prescribed medication in the United States.2 Doctors prescribed an estimated 3.1 million prescriptions for Fioricet in 2019.

While the medicine is legal, some people abuse it illegally– the following information will outline Fioricet, signs of addiction and abuse, and treatment.

Is Fioricet Addictive?

Fioricet has the potential to be addictive. Doctors do not recommend taking it more than twice a week, as taking the drug more often can increase the potential of addiction and abuse.3 Developing a tolerance to Fioricet is possible. Withdrawal symptoms can occur if the drug is taken too often and then suddenly stopped.

Addiction to a substance like Fioricet causes a loss of control over how much and how often the drug is taken. While addiction may initially be easy to conceal, it ultimately causes problems in daily life, often from a financial, work, family, or friends standpoint.

Is Fioricet Safe?

It’s a safe medication when taken as a doctor recommends. There is a risk for overdose including when taken with other medications, such as opioid painkillers. A risk for acetaminophen overdose exists, as well.3 This can cause life-threatening liver damage.

Due to safety concerns, the medication is banned in most European countries.

How Fioricet Used?

Doctors prescribe it to relieve tension headaches.3 This headache type causes tension and pressure in the neck and scalp.3 Some people who experience tension headaches describe the feeling as if they have a rubber band wrapped around their head and the rubber band is squeezing tightly around them.3

In many instances, tension headaches can be resolved with non-prescription medications. Examples of ways to relieve tension headaches include drinking plenty of water, reducing stress, resting, and taking over-the-counter pain-relieving medications, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. However, these medicines sometimes don’t provide relief for tension headaches. As a result, doctors may prescribe Fioricet.

When doctors prescribe the medication, they usually intend it as a short-term remedy, or as-needed for headaches.3 Doctors don’t usually intend the use of this the medication daily or past a few weeks when a history of tension headaches is prevalent.

Can You Overdose on Fioricet?

Yes, it is possible to overdose. Some of the symptoms that a person may be overdosing include the following:

  • Losing consciousness
  • Shallow breathing
  • Slowed or no breathing, which may cause a person to turn blue in appearance
  • Stomach pain
  • Sweating
  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes

These indicate a medical emergency, and 911 should be called at the first signs of overdose.

How Do I Stop Using Fioricet?

Fioricet usage should not be stopped without a doctor’s recommendation. Depending on the dosage, symptoms will vary in individual cases.

Talking to a doctor before stopping taking the medicine can help establish a treatment plan that reduces the risks of a withdrawal seizure.

What is Withdrawal from Fioricet Like?

If Fioricet has been abused, withdrawals will usually begin about eight to 36 hours after the last dose of Fioricet taken.3 Doctors usually recommend a medical treatment facility for withdrawal because as a central nervous system depressant, Fioricet can cause life-threatening seizures.3

Other withdrawal symptoms that a person can go through after abusing Fioricet include:

Treatment for Fioricet Abuse

Fioricet can cause symptoms that are similar to excess alcohol consumption. Its withdrawal symptoms also closely resemble those of alcohol withdrawals, according to an article in the journal JAMA Neurology.

Those who struggle with Fioricet abuse should seek treatment at a medical facility, such as a hospital or rehabilitation facility. There, a doctor can establish a tapering plan, slowly stopping the dosage. Tapering the medication is extremely important to avoid a higher risk for seizure. According to JAMA Neurology, most doctors will recommend reducing a person’s overall daily dose by ten percent a day until the person stops taking the medicine entirely.

Benzodiazepines, such as midazolam, may be prescribed for those withdrawing from Fioricet. This reduces the risk of a withdrawal seizure. However, it is still always possible that a seizure may occur.

Addiction can be more than just a physical dependence on a particular drug-there may be a mental connection to how the medication makes the person feel. When this is the case, it’s important to seek counseling and sometimes a support group that can help navigate the strong cravings present for the drug. A counselor or therapist can help teach other, healthier ways of coping with anxiety or headaches that can reduce the risks of a return to Fioricet abuse.


Fioricet is a headache medicine intended for infrequent use but has been abused as a remedy to treat headaches or as a means to increase the relaxation and slowed-down feelings that alcohol or illegal drugs can produce. While it is not on the drug schedule across the country, some states have it on their drug schedule. This means the substance may be more tightly controlled for prescribing across those particular states.

If you or someone you love suffers from Fioricet addiction, seek medical treatment. Trying to withdraw or quit “cold turkey” could cause seizures, which may be life-threatening.

How to Use Fioricet and What is the Dosage of Fioricet ?

Fioricet is a prescription pain medicine used to treat the symptoms of tension headache. Fioricet may be used alone or with other medications.

Fioricet is an analgesic barbiturate combo.

It is not known if Fioricet is safe and effective in children younger than 12 years of age.

Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually every 4 hours as needed.

If you are using the liquid form of this medication, carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose.

The dosage is based on your medical condition, age, and response to treatment. This medication works best if it is used as the first signs of a headache occur. If you wait until the headache has worsened, the medication may not work as well.

If you suddenly stop using this medication, you may have withdrawal symptoms (such as nausea/vomiting, mental/mood changes, seizures). To help prevent withdrawal, your doctor may lower your dose slowly. Withdrawal is more likely if you have used this medication for a long time or in high doses. Tell your doctor or pharmacist right away if you have withdrawal.

Though it helps many people, this medication may sometimes cause addiction. This risk may be higher if you have a substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol). Take this medication exactly as prescribed to lower the risk of addiction. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Tell your doctor if you notice increased use of this medication, a worsening of headaches, an increase in the number of headaches, the medication not working as well, or use of this medication for more than 2 headache episodes a week. Do not take more than recommended. Your doctor may need to change your medication and/or add a separate medication to prevent the headaches.

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor’s orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage forms (capsules or tablets):
    • For tension headaches:
      • Adults and children 12 years of age and older—One or two capsules or tablets every 4 hours as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 6 capsules or tablets per day. Do not exceed 4 grams (4000 milligrams) of acetaminophen (Tylenol®) per day.
      • Children younger than 12 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Use & Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.