Is It Safe to Take Muscle Relaxers with Gabapentin?

Is It Safe to Take Muscle Relaxers with Gabapentin?
Published : Sep 12, 2023
Last Updated : Jan 25, 2024

Muscle relaxers when taken with gabapentin can cause problems. Some people experience problems that lead to side effects on the body.

When muscle relaxers are taken with Gabapentin, they cause side effects like fainting, lack of concentration, and feeling sleepy.

Nevertheless, elderly people experience issues like impairment in thinking, motor coordination, and judgment.

In case, you are planning to take muscle relaxers along with Gabapentin then consult your doctor once.

What is Gabapentin?

Gabapentin is a prescription drug called a gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) analogue.

GABA decreases impulsiveness of nerve cells in your brain which play a vital role in seizures & transmission of pain signals.

Gabapentin belongs to a class of drugs called anticonvulsants and mirrors the effects of GABA calming excited neurons.

You need to know that Gabapentin is a generic name, while the brand name is Gralise, Horizant, Gaborone, and Neurontin.

What do you mean by muscle relaxers?

Muscle relaxers are prescription drugs that provide relief from muscle-related symptoms such as spasms and spasticity.

Nowadays, you can find different types of muscle relaxers and each of them works in a unique way.

Before starting your treatment, it is necessary to consult a doctor once about the risks and benefits of muscle relaxers.

Different muscle relaxers like Cyclobenzaprine, Methocarbamol, and Tizanidine treat muscle spasms, pains in muscles, and hyperreflexia.

What is Gabapentin used for?

Doctors prescribe Gabapentin for various purposes:

Prevent and control your partial seizures

Gabapentin medication is safe for use in adults, children above the age of 3, and elderly people who suffer from partial seizures.

Ease nerve pain following shingles in adults

Shingles is a painful rash condition that develops after several years you have had chickenpox.

The virus that is responsible for causing chickenpox stays hidden in a portion of the spinal nerve root known as the dorsal root ganglion.

When you are stressed, this hidden or inactive virus gets reactivated and causes a shingles rash.

Nerve pain along with a case of shingles is known as postherpetic neuralgia or PHN.

Treats moderate to serious primary restless legs syndrome condition

Remember branded gabapentin products such as Gralise and Neurontin are approved for treating PHN and partial seizures.

While branded Gabapentin like Horizant is approved to provide relief from restless legs syndrome or PHN.

How does Gabapentin work in your body?

Gabapentin works in your body by discharging some chemicals in the brain known as neurotransmitters.

This further works by sending chemical reaction modifications between your nerve cells.

In this way, alternative cells in the body start to work on your brain and provide relief from your medical conditions.

How one can take Gabapentin?

To attain maximum benefits from Gabapentin, it is important to take this medicine as directed by your doctor.

Take Gralise tablets along with your evening meal without crushing or chewing them. Swallow tablet with a glass of water.

Doctors prescribe patients to take Horizant tablets with food without breaking or crushing. Swallow tablet as a whole.

Nevertheless, other forms of Gabapentin can be taken with or without food as recommended by a doctor.

Neurontin and generic forms of Neurontin tablets can be broken into two pieces. Second half can be taken in next dose.

After whole tablet is cut or broken, do not use half left medicine after 28 days.

If a doctor has advised you liquid formulation of Gabapentin, then measure it carefully with a measuring device provided with medicine.

However, if you have not received a measuring device then ask your doctor for it.

When taking an aluminum or magnesium-containing antacids like Maalox or Gaviscon, wait for two hours before taking next dosage of Gabapentin.

What you must consider before taking Gabapentin?

To avoid side effects and achieve complete benefits of Gabapentin, you must consider a few things.

Inform your doctor about all medicines and herbal supplements you take to treat other medical conditions.

Gabapentin is not recommended for patients who are sensitive to it or suffer from following conditions:

Breathing problems

Lung disorder


Problem in kidneys

Are there any serious side effects of Gabapentin?

Not following your doctor’s direction for the prescribed dosage can make you suffer from the side effects of Gabapentin.

In case, you experience any below-stated symptoms then call your doctor immediately:

Signs of an allergic reaction

If you suffer from a skin rash, blistered or peeling skin, itching, or hives with or without fever then contact a doctor.

Also let your doctor know when you find difficulty in breathing or swallowing, or swelling of your mouth, face, tongue, or throat.

Symptoms of kidney abnormalities

Blood in your urine, trouble in urinating, weight gain, a change in how urine is passing, or swelling of feet & legs.

Changes in mood or behavior

Let your doctor know immediately if you have any suicidal thoughts, anxiety, new or worsening depression, or feelings of agitation. 

Call your doctor if you suffer from following conditions:

Panic attacks

Impulsive behavior

Trouble sleeping

Changes in mood or behavior

Extreme increase in activity

Feelings of aggression or anger


Not able to concentrate or memory issues

Signs of liver problem

Gabapentin can also cause side effects like dark urine, vomiting, yellowing of skin, unusual bleeding, or light-colored stools.

Get emergency medical help, if any of these symptoms do not go away or bother you.

Are there any serious interactions with gabapentin?

Serious breathing issues can happen if you take gabapentin with medicines that cause decreased awareness or severe sleepiness.

During your treatment with gabapentin, avoid using anti-anxiety drugs, muscle relaxers, narcotic opioids, antihistamines, and antidepressants.

Thus, combining muscle relaxers with Gabapentin can cause severe side effects as they interact with each other.