Do you suffer from headaches? Have you used Fioricet to relieve them? Just what is Fioricet used for? This medicine is commonly used to treat pain and disability from a headache caused by tension. It also comes with the risk of addiction as well as the benefit of relieving headaches. Fioricet addiction can be severe, and people should not attempt withdrawal alone.

What is Fioricet?

You may be wondering what is Fioricet and what is Fioricet used for? This medicine is a combination of the following three drugs:

  • Butalbital – A type of barbiturate, which helps muscle relaxation
  • Acetaminophen – Also called paracetamol (sold as Tylenol); it aids in relieving pain
  • Caffeine – Deepens the effects of acetaminophen

There are even some varieties of Fioricet that have codeine, a substance known to be addictive. As a controlled substance, a prescription is required to get Fioricet.

If you have ten or fifteen headaches every month, not just occasionally, your health care provider may write a prescription for Fioricet.

It should be taken correctly, as recommended by your doctor. This medicine should be taken in tablet or liquid, using a special measuring device, rather than a household spoon. Fioricet is taken by mouth, with or without food.

Other brand names for this medicine are Americet, Ezol, and Alagesic. A street name for Fioricet might be Barbs.

Fioricet with Codeine

When stronger management of tension headache pain is required, this may be prescribed. It comes with a higher risk of abuse, creating a dependence of the morphine type.

Fioricet Side Effects

If you have any of these symptoms, you should tell your doctor, as some people experience side effects, and others do not. They might be: Abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, constipation, shaking (tremor), dry mouth, shortness of breath, increased urination, dizziness, lightheadedness, drowsiness, or trouble sleeping.

Fioricet Addiction & Abuse


Symptoms of an overdose may include severe drowsiness, vomiting, loss of appetite, slow/shallow breathing, severe dizziness, nausea, sweating, stomach/abdominal pain, extreme tiredness, yellowing eyes/skin, and dark urine.

People who use Fioricet as a recreational drug are the most likely to suffer an overdose. Butalbital is addictive, but acetaminophen is the ingredient that is most likely to cause an overdose. Liver failure can be the result of a severe overdose. Additionally, drinking alcohol while taking this medicine can cause damage to the liver.

How Long Does Fioricet Stay in Your System?

The recommended dosage is one or two capsules every 4 hours. Exceeding six capsules per day is not recommended, as this can lead to addiction.

Half-life refers to how long Fioricet or a drug will stay in your system. With its combination of drugs, it is the Butalbital, which has the longest half-life, which is 36 hours. The elimination of Fioricet is dependent on the removal of Butalbital from the body. This can take as long as 180 hours, or almost eight days.

Factors that could influence the elimination of this drug from your body include:

  • Overall health
  • Age
  • Frequency
  • Amount used

Addiction to Fioricet

If you take too much, you may develop tolerance to its effects. Higher doses will be required to make you feel better, and your body will need it to get through the day. You will eventually become accustomed to high doses and will experience withdrawal symptoms if you stop.

The ingredient, Butalbital, can cause the feelings of getting high, primarily when one has used Fioricet as a recreational drug. This drug is a depressant of the central nervous system. At high doses, Fioricet produces intoxicated feelings such as with alcohol; this poses a risk for those who take it in this manner, to become addicted.

Withdrawal Symptoms

If you stop taking this medicine suddenly, you may have the following symptoms:

  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Mood changes and mental effects
  • Seizures
  • Anxiety
  • Dizziness
  • and more

Withdrawal should be made gradually with the help of a doctor or medical professional. Many symptoms of withdrawal can last from 8 hours to three days after your last dose.

Knowing what Fioricet is smart, this drug can cause an addiction, which is a severe problem. If you or someone you know is abusing Fioricet, you should get professional treatment with those who care and can help in the path to recovery.

Reaching out to a rehab center is the first step in treatment. There are many other ways to deal with tension headaches that do not include this drug; part of recovery is learning alternative methods to freedom from tension.