Treatment of Barbiturate Abuse
Home Treatment of Barbiturate Abuse
There is no home treatment for barbiturate abuse. If you believe someone has
taken barbiturates inappropriately, take him or her to the hospital for
evaluation by a doctor.
- Barbiturates can cause coma or death if taken
inappropriately. This is especially true in children and in elderly
- Because children are smaller and weigh less than adults, even small doses
of barbiturates could be life threatening.
- Elderly people can be more sensitive to barbiturates and develop a coma
with small doses.
Medical Treatment of Barbiturate Abuse
The treatment of barbiturate abuse or overdose is generally supportive. The
amount of support required depends on the person's symptoms.
- If the person is drowsy but awake and can swallow and breathe without
difficulty, the treatment may consist of just watching the person closely.
- If the person is not breathing, a breathing machine is used to ensure the
person can breathe well until the drugs have worn off.
- Most people receive a liquid form of activated charcoal to bind to any
drugs in their stomach. This may be done by placing a tube into the stomach
(through the nose or mouth) or by having the person drink it.
- Most people are admitted to the hospital or are observed in the emergency
department for a number of hours. Other treatments depend on the specific