Understanding the Process of Benzodiazepine Detox
Benzodiazepines, also known as “benzos,” are a class of psychoactive drugs that are among the most prescribed, as well as the most abused, prescription drugs in the United States. Rich in their sedative, hypnotic, anti-anxiety, anticonvulsant and muscle relaxant properties, benzos, such as Xanax, Ativan, and Valium, are prescribed to treat conditions such as anxiety, insomnia, manic symptoms, etc. However, a long-term use of such drugs is generally discouraged due to their tendency to cause severe side effects such as dependency, increased risk of fall, or dementia, especially in the elderly.
However, the real challenge arises when a person who overuses such medicines develops tolerance toward them, which gradually turns into an addiction. Moreover, when the person stops using the drug, he or she starts experiencing a number of withdrawal symptoms such as sleep disturbances, increased irritability, cognitive and memory problems, etc.
Withdrawal symptoms of benzodiazepines
A persistent use of benzos can turn into a devastating addiction. A person dependent on such drugs continues to use them not for any symptomatic relief but for preventing painful withdrawal. Generally, the first signs of withdrawal appear within 6–8 hours for shorter-acting benzos and 24–48 hours for longer-acting benzos. However, whatever be the cause or duration, withdrawal symptoms are always difficult to deal with.
A few of the common symptoms experienced by an individual withdrawing from benzos are:
· Anxiety or panic attacks
· Headaches and seizures
· Increased irritability
· Emotional outbursts
· Inability to concentrate and perform tasks
· Suicidal thoughts
Benzodiazepines detox: An effective way to get rid of toxicity
The first step toward getting rid of benzodiazepine addiction is to eliminate the residues of the drug from the user’s body through detoxification. Benzo detox varies from person to person and can last for a few days to several months, depending on the intensity or duration of drug abuse, among other factors.
During the benzo detox process, toxins are flushed from the user’s body by removing the components of benzodiazepine that may have accumulated. As the detoxification proceeds, it is normal for the person to experience several withdrawal symptoms, which could be more severe for people who have been abusing the drug over a long period.
It is advisable to undergo detox under the supervision of medical experts who can provide the right kind of guidance and support to withdraw safely from the drug, as well as reduce the chances of relapse. At the same time, one must refrain from going cold turkey as quitting the drug suddenly might lead to life-threatening withdrawal symptoms such as psychosis and seizures or excessive confusion.
This is precisely why receiving medically supervised detox is a good idea, since it helps a person stay healthy and safe while eliminating toxic substances from the body. This involves using less potent benzos, such as Diazepam (Valium) or clonazepam (Klonopin), to reduce the existing dosage of the drug and to keep the symptoms at bay. Some other medications used to relieve withdrawal symptoms are Buspirone and Flumazenil, which can ease the detoxification process.
Avoiding relapse is the key
People with mild addiction can opt for an outpatient detox program instead of an inpatient rehab treatment, as this allows them to get the treatment without disturbing their everyday schedule. But, opting only for a detox program is not enough to attain sobriety. One should combine the detox process with other treatments such as counseling, behavioral therapy or medications, which can help avoid a relapse.
If you know someone who is addicted to any addictive substances and is looking for rapid detox centers in Arizona, the Arizona Detox Helpline can help. Call at our 24/7 Arizona detox helpline number 866–593–8453, and our representatives will connect you with the best facilities in Arizona.