Benzodiazepines, or “benzos,” are a family of drugs that are used for a variety of psychiatric illnesses and ailments. They are used to relieve mild to extreme anxiety, heart attacks, epileptic seizures and even signs of withdrawal from other depressants of the brain and nervous system, such as alcohol. Benzodiazepines are commonly prescribed for short-term use because of their high propensity to induce addiction.
At New Hope Rehab Center, we help patients to create approaches to recovery. We manage to diagnose, recognize, treat and adapt to any issues and conditions for helping patients suffering drug addiction and psychological illnesses.
Benzodiazepines (often referred to as benzos) are a class of prescription drugs commonly used to treat anxiety, insomnia, seizures, and other conditions. While they can be effective when used as prescribed, they also carry a risk of addiction and dependence when misused or taken for an extended period.
Here are some key points about benzodiazepine addiction:
Addiction Potential: Benzodiazepines work by enhancing the effects of a neurotransmitter called gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain, which helps to calm the central nervous system. Prolonged use or misuse can lead to tolerance, meaning higher doses are required to achieve the desired effect. This can eventually lead to physical and psychological dependence, resulting in addiction.
Risk Factors: Certain factors increase the likelihood of developing benzodiazepine addiction. These include a personal or family history of substance abuse, a history of addiction to other substances, and using benzodiazepines for an extended period or in higher doses than prescribed.
Signs and Symptoms: Common signs of benzodiazepine addiction include an increasing need for higher doses, unsuccessful attempts to quit or cut down on use, withdrawal symptoms when attempting to stop, preoccupation with obtaining and using the drug, neglecting responsibilities, social withdrawal, and continued use despite negative consequences.
Withdrawal: Abruptly stopping benzodiazepine use or reducing the dosage after prolonged use can lead to withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms may include anxiety, irritability, insomnia, restlessness, sweating, tremors, muscle spasms, hallucinations, and seizures. Due to the potential severity of benzodiazepine withdrawal, it is recommended to undergo a medically supervised tapering process to minimize discomfort and complications.
Treatment Options: The treatment of benzodiazepine addiction typically involves a combination of medical detoxification, therapy, and support. Medical detoxification helps individuals safely manage withdrawal symptoms under medical supervision. Behavioral therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and motivational interviewing, are often employed to address the underlying causes of addiction and develop coping strategies. Support groups and aftercare programs can provide ongoing support and help prevent relapse.
Importance of Professional Help: It is crucial to seek professional help when dealing with benzodiazepine addiction. Trying to quit abruptly without medical supervision can be dangerous and may result in severe withdrawal symptoms. Healthcare professionals with expertise in addiction treatment can provide personalized guidance and support throughout the recovery process.
If you or someone you know is struggling with benzodiazepine addiction, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional or a specialized addiction treatment center to receive appropriate care and support.