Codeine, also known as 3-methylmorphine is used as a cough medicine. It is also used to treat pain and diarrhea. In general it cures mild to moderate degree of pain. This opiate pain killer medication works by binding to small areas in the central nervous system like brain and spinal cord and decrease the way the person feels and reacts to the pain. The drug starts to work within half an hour upon consumption and it’s very effective for 2 hours and lasts up to 6 hours.
Codeine medication is taken orally in strength of 30 to 60mg every 4 hours to relieve pain. It should not be taken frequently as it may lead to severe side effects if taken often.
The maximum dosage is 240 mg per day for pain relief and people taking this pill are advised not to take more than this to avoid harmful effects.
The pill can be taken with or without food but, generally it is taken after food to avoid feeling sick. Codeine is a short term medication and should not be taken for a longer duration than actually prescribed.
This is because when taken for a long time, if the consumption is stopped suddenly, it may lead to withdrawal symptoms like irritation and restless feeling. So, it is safe to consult a doctor before you stop taking the medicine as he may reduce the dose gradually to avoid such risks.
In particular it is available in combination with the pain killer paracetamol. Before taking Codeine medicine one should also know if he is an eligible person for the medicine. People with below mentioned symptoms should consult a doctor before taking this medicine.
Codeine is generally not recommended for use in someone who is pregnant, have asthma, any uncontrolled breathing problem, and paralytic ileus.
Disclose all medical conditions to the healthcare provider before getting prescribed to take this drug. Codeine use can cause dangerous side effects if not taken keeping in mind all possible interactions.
Along with its beneficial effects the drug also causes side effects like feeling sick, upon which the person is supposed to stop taking spicy food, feeling sleepy upon which a person is not supposed to drive, operate machines or drink alcohol all of which will worsen the situation.
Common side effects of taking Codeine include:
Severe symptoms that require immediate medical attention include but are not restricted to the following:
The drug is contraindicated for use primarily in persons with some kind of breathing disorder. Avoid harmful drug interactions by informing all your doctors regarding any kind of drug currently being taken, be it over the counter, prescription, herbal supplements or vitamins. Check with the doctor regarding taking Codeine along with drugs that produce similar results.