Vicks nasal spray is an oxymetazoline formulation, used in treating nasal congestion and other symptoms of cold. Oxymetazoline is a beta adrenergic blocker that acts by narrowing down the thickness of the blood vessels in the nasal membranes, this causes shrinking of nasal membrane which in turn grows wider for easy air flow. At the same time Vicks nasal spray contains phenylephrine in non UK countries that acts similarly. Also the nasal discharges tend to clog the nasal airway, the nasal spray acts on these discharges so that they are washed out easily.
Vicks nasal spray is easily obtained without a need of prescription. Oxymetazoline is a classic drug that gives fast and complete relief from symptoms of cold that, it is routinely used as one of the best anti cold medicine. For this same reason, oxymetazoline makes the patient addicted without her/his notice. Once the patient gets used to oxymetazoline, it is difficult to withdraw the regular doses. The withdrawal of oxymetazoline is associated with rebound congestion. The drug relieves the symptoms of cold until it is present in body, once the drug gets eliminated the symptoms of cold rebound on the patient and the patient is forced to take another dose of oxymetazoline. This way the patient gets addicted to Vicks nasal spray.
However, Vicks nasal spray does not have the potential to be used or exploited for recreational purposes. But the patient surely gets addicted to the effects of nasal decongestion brought about by oxymetazoline. With time, the regular use of Vicks nasal spray tends to increase the tolerance threshold of the patient, requiring more and more dose of oxymetazoline to achieve nasal decongestion. This way the patient tends to overuse Vicks nasal spray. The over use of drugs may then start showing adverse effects on long term use.
The patients are therefore advised about the possible addictive effects of oxymetazoline present in Vicks nasal spray. The withdrawal phase is very tedious for patients as the nasal symptoms start worrying them. In case you notice you are in such a situation, please consult the physician who prescribed this medicine to you. In some cases, there may be requirement of increasing the dose to meet the increased tolerance threshold and in some other doctors may slowly taper the dose down to zero. Dose tapering has to be done at a very slow pace over a long period of time, so that the body can deal with the change. Thus, the doctor slowly tapers down so that the body starts accepting the reduction in the dose rather than abrupt decrease in the dose.
Vicks nasal spray is a fast moving formulation that is recommended by medical professionals to be the best nasal decongestant in market. Patients are advised to use this medicine judiciously as per the direction of the physician to avoid getting addicted to Vicks nasal spray. However, even if the patient gets addicted to it, withdrawal is simple as the drug does not show any potential for recreational effects on the body.