Benzo Addiction Facts: Indicators, Short and Long Term Effects, and What to Expect from Withdrawal from Benzodiazepines.
Benzodiazepines are a class of psychoactive drugs that are prescribed to treat conditions such as insomnia, anxiety, seizures, and a host of other health issues. There are many different types of benzodiazepines, each differing in potency and how they are metabolized in the body, as well as their therapeutic use.
While treatment that uses benzodiazepines can be effective, this class of drug has the potential of being highly addictive when used for long periods of time. Becoming familiar with the benzo addiction facts below, will help you understand the dangers of this very powerful drug and avoid unwanted dependency. If you are concerned about becoming addicted to benzodiazepine, learn the facts about addiction here:
- Abuse of benzodiazepines can result in confusion, slurred speech, seizures, shakiness, difficulty breathing, severe weakness, or even coma.
- Addicts have a higher risk of developing dementia, an illness that affects the brain and causes problems with speech, memory, and motor skills.
- Abuse of benzodiazepines is dangerous because overdosing is common. Overdoses on benzodiazepines contribute to a large number of hospital admissions each year.
- Detox for benzo addiction comes with great risks as well. When use is stopped suddenly, addicts can experience very severe withdrawal symptoms, based on how long and how much they were using.
- Detox for benzo addiction should be medically supervised and monitored, as withdrawal symptoms could include muscle cramping and spasms, hallucinations, and even seizures which could be life threatening.
- It is easy to develop a tolerance to benzodiazepines, and then find yourself needing to take more and more to produce the sedation or tranquilizing effect that it provides.
- A woman taking benzodiazepines during pregnancy can risk serious and permanent birth defects to her unborn child.
- People who abuse this class of drug can suffer from serious side effects, including vision problems, impaired coordination, depression, irritability and aggression.
In addition to the information provided above, additional benzo addiction facts indicate how abusing these types of drugs can cause a serious public health issue. Because these drugs are central nervous system depressants, they provide a sense of relaxation, an exaggerated sense of overall well-being and security, in addition to other feelings that are not in line with reality.
They allow users to forget stressful situations or related thoughts. Benzodiazepines slow the brain’s activity and cause perceptual distortions. Benzodiazepines are similar to alcohol in how they compromise one’s speed processing and visual abilities, making driving while taking these types of drugs very dangerous. In elderly people, they have been reported to result in an increased number of falls.
Conversely, those addicted to benzodiazepine drugs, report that withdrawal from drugs in this class can be extremely difficult and intense. Many that undergo detox for benzo addiction suffer from paranoid thoughts, feelings of persecution, and even depersonalization, which is a state in which a person feels that their thoughts and feelings no longer belong to them, or they lose a sense of their own personal identity.
More benzo addiction facts can be found from Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. This agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services works to inform Americans about the dangers of substance abuse with the goal of reducing its impact and mental illness throughout our communities. In addition to information and statistics, it offers resources for getting help for yourself or a loved one who is addicted to benzodiazepine or other substances.
While there are many beneficial uses for benzodiazepines, such as treatment for panic attacks, epilepsy, nausea related to chemotherapy, and even irritable bowel syndrome, it is not recommended that they be used over a long period of time due to their addictive qualities. Without intention, there is a great risk of physical dependence on benzodiazepines even when taken within prescribed boundaries.
While dependence is different from addiction, it can lead to the onset of addiction quite rapidly. This is why learning benzo addiction facts can help those be cautious when taking this type of drug and cognizant of its dangers in order to avoid dependency and maintain control of one’s own health.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.