Benzodiazepines Dependency and Addiction
Benzodiazepines, also known as anti-anxiety prescription medications, are commonly known by name brands such as Xanax, Klonopin, Valium and Ativan. There are many different brand and generic names for benzos, and the generics most commonly end in “lam” or “pam”. Benzodiazepines are among the substances that require a medically monitored detox due to the increased risk for seizures for those who are using on a daily basis with a consistent high dose.
With benzo withdrawal, there are two phases that a person will go through. The Acute phase typically lasts between 7-90 days. The Post Acute Withdrawal Symptoms that follow (PAWS) can last up to two years. The length of time and quantity of use will determine the extent of these detox phases on a case by case basis.
The most commonly reported benzo withdrawal symptoms are increased anxiety, panic attacks, hyperventilation, tremors, sleep disturbances, muscle spasms, sweating, altered mood, visual disturbances, anorexia and weight loss. The recommendation for benzo detox should be completed by a medical doctor and for the best outcome and safety in an inpatient or residential detox.
Benzodiazepine Detox Treatment Centers
The recommendation for benzodiazepine detox should be done in a licensed inpatient or residential setting with a licensed medical team for increased safety and the best outcome. The treatment program will consists of a full treatment team including a psychiatrist, therapist, counselor, and 24 hour support staff.
Detoxing from Benzo’s Safely
Detoxing from benzodiazepine, drugs that include Xanax, Ativan, Klonopin, or Valium, also requires close supervision. The detox and withdrawal process should involve a scheduled tapering process where the individual will slowly wean themselves off the drug. This is necessary, as approaching benzodiazepine withdrawal cold turkey can have fatal consequences. Because of the tapering process, the benzo detox can take 2-3 weeks, depending on the length of benzodiazepine abuse history and the usual daily dosing. These factors also influence the severity of the withdrawal symptoms.
Benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms emerge 10-12 hours after the last dose and include:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Heart palpitations
- Nausea, retching
- Mood swings
- Weight loss
- Tingling in arms and legs
- Memory problems
- Muscle and joint pain
- Panic attack
- Drug cravings
- Suicidal thoughts
This is urgent and potentially life threatening, don’t wait, get in a safe and comfortable benzodiazepine detox today! Call to connect with a benzodiazepine treatment center at (866) 644-7911 and receive care and compassion.
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