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Guanfacine is a medication designed to treat high blood pressure, though perhaps better known as a treatment for ADHD. It is also sometimes prescribed to people with opioid use disorder to help with the effects of withdrawal.
Guanfacine lowers blood pressure by slightly decreasing your heart rate and making your blood vessels larger. It is not known exactly how or why it helps with ADHD.
Guanfacine is only available with a prescription from your health care provider. Brand names include Intuniv and Tenex.
Guanfacine is safe when you use it according to the directions from you doctor or other health care provider. Guanfacine can be harmful if:
Taking too much guanfacine, or taking guanfacine that is not prescribed for you, can make you feel very drowsy or lethargic, and lower your heart rate and blood pressure. These symptoms can be serious in some cases, usually only instances involving young children, who may also have trouble breathing due to the guanfacine.
The effects of guanfacine poisoning can sometimes be delayed for hours. A young child who swallows guanfacine may look fine at first and then have serious problems later.
If someone has taken guanfacine in a way that could be harmful, call the poison center at 1-800-222-1222, chat online above, or text POISON to 85511. If you can, have the medication bottle with you when you contact us.
To prevent poisonings from guanfacine:
Last Updated: Friday September 8th 2023