Is Your Loved One Addicted To Benzodiazepines? Here Are the Tell Tale Signs

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Addicted To Benzodiazepines

With the high levels of stress people experience these days, it is not surprising that an alarming portion of the population now depends on medications to relax and attain deep sleep. There are plenty of medications out there that doctors routinely prescribe to help patients manage issues such as insomnia and anxiety. Benzodiazepines are one such category of drugs that are widely used to combat insomnia. 

However, did you know that benzodiazepines can be highly addictive? And that long-time abuse can result in serious health problems. If you suspect that a loved one is abusing benzodiazepines and perhaps struggling to break free of the addiction, there are reliable sources you can approach for help. 

But first, you need to be aware of the signs of benzodiazepine abuse. Read on to discover everything you need to know about benzodiazepine addiction and how to get help from a drug rehab treatment center. 

Physical symptoms of addiction to watch out for

When addicted to benzodiazepine, your dear one may exhibit certain physical signs that you must pay attention to. Some of these common symptoms include:

  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Weakness in muscles
  • Fatigue
  • Slurred speech
  • Tremors 
  • Difficulties in coordination
  • Confusion
  • Memory issues
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea and vomiting

If someone close to you has not been diagnosed with any medical condition yet begins to experience such physical symptoms and is reluctant to seek medical help, it may be an indication of benzodiazepine abuse. Consult a doctor right away to get a precise diagnosis. 

Behavioral changes triggered by benzodiazepine abuse

Some symptoms may also be behavioral in nature. If the physical symptoms are accompanied by behavioral ones as well, you need to seek help as soon as possible. Some of the behavioral signs that are considered red flags are as follows:

  • Depression
  • Mood swings
  • Spending time in isolation
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Seemingly agitated
  • Secretive nature
  • Uninterested in activities they previously enjoyed
  • Lying about their activities

Sudden and noticeable changes in personality coupled with a reluctance to participate in social activities are signs you need to take note of. 

Erratic sleep patterns 

It may sound ironic that benzodiazepines – that have been designed to treat insomnia – can actually disrupt sleep patterns. Although the prescribed quantity of drug can help with insomnia, continuing its use without consulting the doctor can lead to changes in sleep patterns that include: 

  • Feeling extremely fatigued during daytime
  • Difficulty falling asleep
  • Sleeping for extended periods of time
  • Feeling drowsy during the day in spite of adequate sleep at night
  • Waking up multiple times during the night

Sometimes, these signs can be corrected by consulting the doctor and getting the dosage adjusted. However, if that fails to work, it could be a clear sign of benzodiazepine abuse. 

Possible withdrawal symptoms

When people who have been using benzodiazepines for months stop taking it, they may experience withdrawal symptoms. In many cases, these symptoms can be severe, often requiring medical assistance.  Some of the withdrawal symptoms you must know about are as follows:

  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Seizures
  • Irritability
  • Sweating
  • Tremors
  • Nausea and vomiting

Remember that it can be risky to manage withdrawal symptoms at home. If you notice any of these symptoms, do not hesitate to seek medical help at a drug rehab in Florida

Health risks of benzodiazepine abuse

Depending on benzodiazepines over extended periods may lead to serious health risks. A few of the physical and psychological issues linked to benzodiazepine addiction include:

  • Anxiety and depression: If your dear one has been prescribed benzodiazepines to combat anxiety and depression, long-time use can sometimes aggravate the condition, leading to severe dependence on the drug. 
  • Respiratory depression: Also known as hypoventilation, this condition indicates lungs that are unable to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide efficiently during the respiration process, leading to slow, and shallow breathing. 
  • Memory loss: Studies show that benzodiazepines can lead to short-term memory loss. As a result, individuals may be unable to recollect vital information, leading to conflicts at the workplace or in their social lives. 
  • Cognitive issues: Benzodiazepines can adversely affect cognitive functions, rendering affected individuals incapable of thinking clearly or making logical decisions. 
  • Risk of overdose: If a person is taking benzodiazepines along with other drugs, there is a high risk of overdosing. 

Treatment options available to overcome benzodiazepine addiction

After a meticulous physical and psychological evaluation of the affected individual, doctors will suggest available treatment options. Generally, the treatment will be based on how severe the addiction is. A few of these treatment options include:

  • Detoxification: Just as the term suggests, this treatment process involves gradually eliminating all traces of the drug from the system. While detoxification is sometimes available as outpatient treatment, certain cases may require in-patient care. 
  • Treatment with medications: This type of treatment consists of using medications such as methadone to help patients manage withdrawal symptoms. Medications are also effective in cutting down the risk of relapse. 
  • Inpatient treatment: Choosing inpatient treatment at an addiction rehab center is a good option to ensure round-the-clock medical attention, therapy, and support to fight addiction.
  • Behavioral treatment: If individuals exhibit psychological symptoms or behavioral changes, this treatment can equip them with vital coping strategies to fight addictive tendencies. 
  • Support Groups: Opening up about the addiction among a group of people who have gone through similar experiences can be uplifting. Joining support groups such as Narcotics Anonymous can keep individuals motivated to refrain from relapse. 

Final word

So as you now know, benzodiazepine addiction is not something to be taken lightly. Considering its severe health risks, you need to be aware about the signs of benzodiazepine abuse and be willing to seek help if a loved one seems to be addicted. Remember that help is just a click away at West palm beach addiction treatment center

Based on the severity of addiction, there are numerous treatment options available. Amidst a positive environment and supportive medical team, your dear one can conquer the addiction and attain long-term results. An experienced addiction specialist can help you determine the right course of action.

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