The CDC has reported many worrying statistics related to benzodiazepines (benzos) from 2019 to 2029.
The number of ER visits related to benzos increased by 24% during this time. 7,000 overdose deaths involved benzos. Prescription benzo deaths increased by 22% and illicit benzo deaths increased by 520%.
If you realize that you’re dependent on benzos, forgive yourself first. These statistics show the strong presence of these drugs in our communities. It’s just too easy for you and others to access them.
Unfortunately, you’re still the one who has to stop taking a benzodiazepine drug. A medical benzo detox can help. Read on to learn more about this process.
What Are Benzos?
The term ‘benzodiazepines’ or ‘benzos’ refers to a group of medications. Xanax, Klonopin, Valium, and Ativan (commonly misspelled as Atavan) are all members of this group.
When used as a prescription medication, a benzo drug can be effective at treating certain conditions. They’re usually used to treat conditions such as seizures, anxiety, and insomnia. People who take them often report feeling happily calm, relaxed, and/or sleepy.
However, this effectiveness comes with many severe risks and problems.
What Are the Health Dangers of Benzos?
Overdosing is the greatest health risk of benzos. However, there are plenty of other negative health effects that benzos can cause. You can find more information about these in the list below.
You can also use this list to learn how to tell if someone is on Xanax, Valium, etc. Once you do so, you can try to get them the help they need.
Benzos can increase a person’s levels of aggression and restlessness. The drugs can also cause or increase the symptoms of depression.
Thinking and Memory Issues
Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease are often present in benzo users. Delirium, paranoia, and hallucinations are also common symptoms. Less severe mental issues caused by benzos include fogginess, confusion, and poor attention.
Slow Reaction Time
Benzos can slow down how fast a user reacts in everyday situations. This puts them at a greater risk of injuries from incidents like falls and car accidents.
Children of pregnant women who take benzos may be born early or have a low birth weight. They may also experience symptoms of withdrawal.
People who have sleep apnea, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and other breathing disorders should avoid benzos. These drugs can make these diseases worse.
Benzo overdoses can cause symptoms like a coma, slurred speech, and respiratory depression. Also, death happens frequently when a user mixes benzos with other drugs.
How to Undergo a Benzo Detox
Undergoing a benzo detox isn’t easy for anyone. Also, there are plenty of dangers you can face during it. Ideally, you should undergo a medical benzo detox.
You can learn more about undergoing a benzo detox in the list below.
Do Not Quit Benzos Cold Turkey
The withdrawal symptoms of benzos can be severe. Benzo withdrawal can even be fatal. For this reason, it is not a good idea to quit benzos cold turkey (stop all benzo use at once).
Talk to a Doctor First
Talk to a doctor before you stop taking a benzodiazepine. Doing so will ensure that you remain safe while you detox from benzos. He or she will likely recommend that you undergo an inpatient or outpatient program.
Patients involved in inpatient treatment programs will stay inside a rehab facility during a detox. They will have 24/7 access to medical staff should the withdrawal symptoms become dangerous. They will also participate in helpful activities such as group therapy.
With outpatient treatment, patients will live outside the facility. They will receive treatment in between work and other everyday life activities. This can be beneficial as they won’t risk losing their job and will have the support of friends and family.
Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms
Medical staff will likely lower the amount of a benzo drug you take over time through careful tapering. Sometimes they will provide you with another drug that can help ease your withdrawal. Despite this, you’ll probably experience withdrawal symptoms.
These usually happen in three phases: early, acute, and post-acute withdrawal.
You’ll experience rebound symptoms first. During this, the reasons why you were taking benzos (anxiety, insomnia, etc.) will return worse than before.
This phase is usually short, but the time can vary. It usually depends on the type of benzo you were taking. Some have longer half-lives than others.
Acute withdrawal symptoms can last between five days and several months. The symptoms during this time are the ones that people usually associate with benzo withdrawal. A few examples are listed below.
- Muscle stiffness
- Heart problems
Once the worst of the benzo withdrawal symptoms have ceased, you may still experience some lingering issues. However, these will be less physical and more emotional and psychological. You can experience the following:
- Reduced libido
- Less concentration
- Mood swings
- Sleep struggles
After the Detox
Even after you’ve completed the detox, relapse is still possible. To prevent this, you need to seek further support and find other ways to improve yourself.
Figuring out why you became dependent on benzos can help. Regular therapy sessions can help you discover any trauma, psychological disorders, etc. You can then get these treated and be less likely to relapse into benzo addiction.
Improving your health can help as well. Be sure to eat balanced meals and get regular exercise.
Visit Us for Ventura County Substance Abuse Treatment
You deserve to live a healthy and long life. Being dependent on benzos will only hinder the odds of you having this. A benzo detox will improve them.
If you’re looking for Ventura County drug rehab centers, consider our luxury drug rehab center. We have worked hard to create a program that betters the health of our clients in several ways. To start on the road to recovery, fill out this form and start speaking to one of our dedicated staff.