Cymbalta Addiction and Abuse

Cymbalta is the generic or brand name for Duloxetine, a commonly prescribed antidepressant used to treat anxiety or depressive disorders. This medication can also be used to treat certain medical conditions such as arthritis and helps to relieve nerve pain or damage. 

Although Cymbalta has several benefits and is thought to be non-addictive, it still has the potential to become abused and develop into a dependency. 

What is Cymbalta? 

Cymbalta, or Duloxetine, is a prescribed medication used to treat mild to severe depression and generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). This medication is categorized as a serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI), meaning it helps increase the brain’s levels of serotonin and balance the levels of norepinephrine. This helps the brain experience feelings of happiness and well-being and healthily regulate stress.

Cymbalta Effects and Abuse

Cymbalta is known for helping improve a person’s overall mood, sleep, and appetite, as well as increasing energy levels while reducing feelings of anxiety or worry. While these may seem like positive effects, this medication still carries risks of causing negative side effects and being abused. 

In some cases, the effects of using Cymbalta can be uncomfortable and dangerous. Adverse effects of taking Cymbalta include: 

  • Muscle weakness or tremors
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Weight loss
  • Excessive sweating
  • Skin rash

Chronic and long-term users may experience some of the less common effects of Cymbalta including sexual dysfunction or colitis. Doctors recommend avoiding the use of alcohol while taking this medication as it can increase the chances of developing liver damage.

Due to its soothing and mood-boosting effects, Cymbalta is often abused. People abuse this drug by taking it without a prescription, taking more than the prescribed or instructed amount, or mixing it with other drugs, such as alcohol. The act of abusing Cymbalta highly increases the chances of experiencing the adverse effects of this drug and can cause dangerous and painful effects such as seizures, serious skin reactions, or stomach cramps.

Cymbalta should never be taken without a valid prescription and should never be mixed with other drugs. Seek medical help immediately if you, or someone you know, are experiencing effects from Cymbalta abuse.

Cymbalta Dependency and Addiction

When taken regularly, a person may become physically dependent on Cymbalta and experience withdrawal symptoms when stopping the use of this medication. In some cases, the uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms may cause a person to continue using the drug, despite the desire to quit. It is important to note, that the chances of developing a dependency to Cymbalta are greatly increased if this drug is continuously abused.

Although drug dependency does not always result in drug addiction, it is still possible. Cymbalta abuse or addiction can increase the chances of health concerns like liver damage and can cause seizures, blackouts, overdoses, or death. Call 911 immediately if you suspect any sign of dangerous Cymbalta abuse or addiction.


Signs that someone is abusing or may have developed an addiction to Cymbalta include: 

  • Slurred speech
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Severe weight loss
  • Engaging in risky or illegal behavior to obtain more of the drug
  • Financial problems due to the drug use
  • Using more of the drug to reach desired effect (tolerance)
  • Sudden changes in physical appearance
  • Lying about symptoms to obtain more of the drug

Cymbalta addiction may result in dangerous health complications including seizures, overdose, and death. Medical attention is highly advised when a Cymbalta addiction is present to ensure safety during the withdrawal phase and to prevent possible relapse. 

How to Quit Cymbalta

You should never attempt to quit Cymbalta on your own. The withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous and may require medical support. Contact your medical provider before deciding to stop the use of Cymbalta to avoid experiencing negative effects and withdrawals.

Withdrawal symptoms of Cymbalta include:

  • Increased irritability
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Intense nightmares
  • Chronic headaches
  • Paresthesia (tingling sensation on the skin)

Discontinuing the use of Cymbalta also increases the risks of several psychological effects such as increased depression or anxiety, insomnia, or thoughts of self-harm or suicide. The withdrawal effects typically last up to two weeks, but in some cases, it can take up to three months before the effects completely stop.

Get Help Today for Cymbalta Abuse or Addiction

Cymbalta, like all other antidepressant medications, can be highly beneficial and positively change a person’s quality of life by helping to treat their mental disorder. However, this drug still has the risk for adverse side effects, which become increased and worsened when Cymbalta is abused.

If you or a loved one are experiencing signs of Cymbalta abuse, dependency, or addiction, then contact Quit Addiction Now (888 564-4780) to learn about the resources and treatment options available to you.

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