Benzodiazepines are a class of psychoactive drugs that doctors prescribe to treat insomnia, anxiety, and a number of other conditions. They are one of the most common medications in the United States and are unfortunately also commonly abused. Benzodiazepines have anti-anxiety, sedative, muscle relaxant, hypnotic, and anticonvulsant properties, and work by enhancing the effects of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurotransmitter. These desirable effects lead many to fall victim to benzodiazepines addiction.
The GABA neurotransmitter is responsible for reducing neuron activity that causes anxiety and stress. When used properly, benzodiazepines are generally effective and safe for the short term. Long term use, however, is controversial due to the potential of adverse effects including drug dependence and addiction. Leo Sternbach accidentally created the first benzodiazepine, Chlordiazepoxide in 1955.
Types of Benzodiazepines:
|Alprazolam||With the brand name Xanax, alprazolam is the most popular benzodiazepine in the United States. The FDA approved it for the treatment of anxiety and panic disorders.|
|Brotizolam||This is a very potent drug with anticonvulsant and hypnotic properties. It has a very fast onset of action and is most commonly treats severe insomnia. Authorities consider this substance unsafe for use in the United States, Britain, or Canada.|
|Clonazepam||Commonly known by the bran name Klonopin, clonazepam is a highly potent anticonvulsant, hypnotic, sedative. It is long acting and has a half life between twenty and fifty hours. The FDA approved it for the treatment of panic disorders and epilepsy.|
|Bromazepam||A benzodiazepine that alleviates of anxiety prior to surgery, and for short term treatment of anxiety issues.|
|Chlordiazepoxide||A substance that is used to help manage alcohol withdrawal syndrome.|
|Diazepam||Commonly known by the brand name Valium, diazepam is used to treat seizures, insomnia, panic attacks, and alcohol withdrawal. It is a fast acting, hypnotic, sedative.|
|Clorazepate||PA sedative, hypnotic drug that is used in the treatment of anxiety disorders and severe insomnia.|
|Flunitrazepam||Commonly known by the brand name Rohypnol, flunitrazepam is for short term treatment of severe, chronic insomnia. Unfortunately, many people also know of it for its misuse as a date rape drug because it can cause amnesia.|
|Lorazepam||With the brand name Ativan, lorazepam is a very potent drug that has muscle relaxation and sedative properties. Many use it for the short term treatment of severe anxiety.|
There are a number of other types of benzodiazepines in addition to the ones listed above. Doctors prescribe those for the treatment of insomnia, anxiety disorders, and more.
Common Side Effects of Benzodiazepine Use:
Benzodiazepine use can have a number of side effects, many of which are unpleasant. The use of these drugs can cause severe drowsiness, dizziness, impaired coordination, confusion, and trembling. They can also cause vision problems, increased feelings of depression, headache, and grogginess. A serious side effect of benzodiazepine use is the development of a dependence on the drug. This occurs most often with chronic use of benzodiazepines, or benzodiazepines addiction.
Users that develop a dependence to benzodiapezines will experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop taking the drugs. Withdrawal symptoms include tremors, insomnia, muscle spasms, and agitation. More severe symptoms can occur from abrupt withdrawal of the drug. Treatment for benzodiazepine addiction can include a number of different steps but often involves a gradual reduction of the drug dosage. It is important to seek the help of a qualified medical professional for help with drug addiction.
Morningside Recovery offers programs for those who need anxiety treatment, benzodiazepine addiction, or a dual diagnosis program. Our benzodiazepines for anxiety treatment program helps people who suffer from anxiety and developed an addiction to their medications. Call us today at 855-631-2135 to learn more about our programs and how to enroll.