Benzodiazepine, often abbreviated benzos are a type of sedative with varied uses including anti-anxiety, sleep aid, and for before dental procedures. With prolonged use, users can develop dependency on them. This can result in decreased efficacy of the drug, cognitive decline, and clumsiness. They also bring with them an increased risk of dementia or suicide.
Although there is some debate of how long benzos should be prescribed for, it’s generally agreed that benzos should not be a long-term solution. Quitting them usually leads to an improved mental and physical condition. If a person has become dependent on them, quitting benzos come with withdrawal symptoms similar to other drugs. Symptoms may include (but are not limited to):
- Difficulty sleeping and irritability
- Tension, anxiety, and panic attacks
- Tremors, shaking, and sweating
- Difficulty thinking and confusion
- Nausea, retching, and weight loss
- Palpitations, headaches, and muscle pain
- An increased risk of suicide
Quitting benzos suddenly can be dangerous and life-threatening. Detox should be done with the help of qualified medical professionals who can wean you off of them carefully. Suddenly quitting benzos can bring more severe withdrawal symptoms including:
- Severe confusion
- Catatonia or convulsions which could result in death
- Delirium, psychosis, or mania
- A coma
- Violent behavior
Addiction to benzos is serious. Tapering off the drug and developing a plan to avoid relapse is an important part in recovery which is why it is best done with the help of recovery experts. Having a peer support is also a key ingredient which has been shown to have a strong effect in helping with recovery. There are many support groups for people who have recovered from an addiction to benzos and engaging with such groups will help a lot.
If you’re addicted to benzos, don’t let fear of withdrawal stop you from recovering. There are trained professionals who want to help. If you’re in Florida, call us at (855) 441-2449.