Benzodiazepines Addiction Treatment In the United States
Benzodiazepines are a class of sedative drugs, which are generally prescribed, which have the properties of being anticonvulsant, hypnotic and sedative. In the field of addiction, these drugs are commonly used to detox people from alcohol because it prevents the common withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, seizures and muscle spasms.
Safety of benzodiazepine
Benzodiazepine is safest if it used on a short-term basis but still there can be some cognitive impairments such as aggression and other paradoxical reactions, which mean the opposite effects of what the medication is supposed to do. Long-term use of benzodiazepine is not only not recommended; it is proven to trap the unsuspecting user by creating a tolerance, which means addiction and physical dependency, and also it has unbelievably harsh withdrawal symptoms upon stopping it. Benzodiazepine is in addition a drug widely abused, commonly sold on the street, and comes along with the same incredibly harsh withdrawal symptoms often resulting in a psychotic break, and sometimes resulting in hospitalization in a psychiatric hospital.
Did you know this about benzodiazepines?
These are classed as a psychoactive drug, and work as a sedative producing a hypnotic and drowsy like state for the user. They are viewed by the medical community as safe for short-term use, but have been the direct cause of some very severe addictions, overdoses, and withdrawals.
Benzodiazepines use for alcohol dependency
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms are usually treated with benzodiazepine. It mainly prevents seizures and delirium (DTs) when the person has ceased his intake of alcohol. The most common benzos used to detox from alcohol are Diazepam commonly called valium and librium. They are long lasting benzos which is better to prevent alcohol withdrawal symptoms than short acting ones such as ativan and oxazepam. The shorter life benzos are also more prone to rebound effects.
Benzodiazepines should never be used in the following situations or conditions:
- Respiratory problems
- Severe liver deficiency
- Sleep apnea syndrome
- Pregnancy, labor and lactation
- Breast feeding
- Phobic or obsessional states
- Chronic psychosis
- Major depression and thus precipitating suicidal tendencies
- Abrupt or over rapid withdrawal after long-term use is contraindicated - risk of a severe benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome developing with symptoms such as toxic psychosis, convulsions or a condition resembling delirium tremens.
- History of physical dependence on benzodiazepines or other cross tolerant drugs such as other GABAergic sedative hypnotic drugs, including alcohol - risk of rapid reinstatement of dependency. Benzodiazepines increase craving for alcohol in problem alcohol consumers. Benzodiazepines also increased the volume of alcohol consumed by problem drinkers.
- Driving a motor vehicle, increased risk of road traffic accident
- neuromuscular disease.
- Side effects of benzodiazepines
Common side effects
- upset stomach
- blurred vision
- impaired alertness
- falls or ataxia
- impaired coordination
- changes in heart rate
- Fewer common side effects
- dissociation or depersonalization dreaming or nightmareschest painparadoxical reactionsvision changesvery rarely jaundice.
- Benzo's withdrawal symptoms
Withdrawal symptoms of benzodiazepines will occur when the person has a physical dependency to the medication. It happens when the person uses the medication on a long-term basis. It happens when the drug is reduced or stopped abruptly. It would be less severe when gradually weaned off. It can take a very short time to become addicted to benzodiazepine.
Tranks and downers
Always seek professional help to detox from benzos. Do not cut off your medication before talking to your doctor.
Is Benzodiazepines addictive?
Although Benzodiazepine is helpful in many cases, it makes you physically and psychologically dependent on it. This dependence leads to sweating, headaches, panic attacks and many other severe symptoms. Due to high dependence, the withdrawal becomes a challenge with harsh after-effects, such as seizures.
How to detox from Benzodiazepines
There are different starting points if it is an addiction or a prescription:
- Addiction – locate an inpatient medical detox center
- Prescription – work with the prescribing doctor to wean off and/or attend a medical detox program.
Seek out further treatment to stabilize physical and psychological side effects.