For many individuals, over-the-counter medications are just as addictive as prescription medications prescribed by a doctor for legitimate reasons. If you or a loved one find yourself addicted to prescription medication, including benzodiazepine (benzos), you are not alone.
Quit Alcohol provides various resources to support you or your loved one as you navigate addiction. Read on to learn more about Benzo addictions and how professional treatment can help you get clean and sober once and for all.
What are Benzos?
Benzodiazepine is a commonly prescribed medication that functions as a type of tranquilizer. Prescribed benzodiazepines are often used as a treatment for panic disorder, seizures, and anxiety disorder. It is frequently used before surgery before an anesthetic is administered. It is known to relax the muscles and act as a depressant on the central nervous system.
Commonly prescribed medications labeled as benzodiazepines include:
- Xanax (Alprazolam)
- Valium (Diazepam)
- Librium (Chlordiazepoxide)
- Klonopin (Clonazepam )
Certain benzodiazepines are faster-acting agents than others. Some of these medications, such as Diazepam, can take 30 to 60 minutes for the effects to be felt whereas others may take up to 3 days. Due to their addictive properties, benzos that are prescribed, even for legitimate medical purposes, commonly result in addiction.
Effects of Benzodiazepines
Since benzodiazepines are used as a sedative, they can work against muscle spasms, and cause memory impairment and sensory hypersensitivity. In high doses, patients or others who use or abuse benzodiazepines may experience mental confusion and cognitive impairment.
Additional side effects of benzodiazepines include weakness and drowsiness. For those with a history of drug abuse problems or substance addiction, it is not recommended to use benzodiazepine. Some individuals may have difficulty realizing they have an addiction because a medication is prescribed. When this occurs, a compassionate intervention hosted by family and friends is often necessary.
Benzodiazepine and Drug Abuse
Benzodiazepine addiction, or benzo addiction, is very common due to how readily available benzodiazepine is. Many have noted that the number of benzodiazepine addicts is growing at a similar rate to that of the opioid epidemic. Other dangerous drugs such as opioids are often combined with benzos to increase the sensation of being”high”. This can be a cause of benzodiazepine overdose when using other drugs in combination with benzodiazepines.
Benzodiazepine Abuse Symptoms
- Behavioral symptoms such as aggression, irritability, and other mood changes.
- Mental health difficulties and decreased cognitive function
- Continuing to take benzodiazepine even after the prescription has run out
If you recognize the symptoms above in yourself, family members, or loved ones, it may be time to seek help.
Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Symptoms
For those who struggle with benzodiazepine substance abuse and begin the withdrawal process, it is best to seek professional care. Below are some common benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms from stopping the use of Benzos. For those with more severe Benzodiazepine dependence, the Benzo withdrawal symptoms may be stronger than others.
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Memory issues and difficulty concentrating
- Nausea, vomiting, sweaty palms, and shaking
Benzodiazepine Addiction Treatment Centers
When beginning the treatment process for benzodiazepine addiction and drug abuse in general, there are two main types of treatment programs: Inpatient and Outpatient. Our team at Qut Alcohol is happy to guide you through the process of choosing a center that fits your needs and helping you understand the variety of treatments that are offered.
Inpatient Treatment Centers
Inpatient programs, also known as residential treatment programs allow for patients to stay at the hospital or treatment facility for the duration of the addiction treatment process. During a Benzo addiction treatment program, the patient is more thoroughly monitored here, and the duration of treatment is longer and more intensive than outpatient treatment. This may be a good option for those going through the withdrawal process, so they have the support and medical care they need for a safe recovery.
Outpatient Treatment Centers
Outpatient treatment centers allow the patient to commute to a treatment facility for a few hours a week and return home at the end of each treatment session. Outpatient treatment requires fewer hours of treatment and is a more financially viable option for those who cannot afford inpatient treatment.
We are Here to Offer Support During Benzo Recovery
It is never too late to seek treatment for drug addiction. If you would like further information about helping your loved one get the help they need, or navigating the recovery process from a benzo addiction, contact Quit Alcohol online today or call us at (877) 683-2684.