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What Are The Side Effects of Benzos?

young woman in darkened room with her head in her hands asking herself what are the side effects of benzos

If you or a loved one has become dependent on benzodiazepines, keep in mind that you’re not alone, and quality help is available to you. Many Americans struggle with this powerful class of drugs commonly prescribed for conditions like panic attacks, insomnia, acute anxiety, or seizures. As central nervous system depressants, benzos strongly increase the activity of two of the brain’s mood-regulating chemicals, GABA and dopamine. This creates effects like hypnotic states, sedation, decreased anxiety, and muscle relaxation. The presence of benzo side effects may be the first clue that you or a loved one are moving beyond prescribed and necessary use.

While benzos can be very supportive for those who need them, they also pose an array of risks. To learn more about benzo side effects, contact Ray Recovery in Hudson, Ohio, today. We offer a qualified benzo addiction treatment program, and our friendly team looks forward to connecting with you at 888.598.6299 or by online message.

What Are the Main Benzodiazepine Side Effects?

While it’s true that benzos, like any other drug, have slightly different effects on each individual who takes them, there are nonetheless common symptoms to watch for if someone is abusing benzos:

  • Slurred speech and reduced ability to concentrate on mental tasks
  • Difficulty forming long-term memories and frequent confusion
  • Lower blood pressure and rate of respiration
  • Dizziness, disorientation, and coordination
  • While uncommon among people using only benzos, death due to overdose is also possible, especially when the drug is paired with other respiratory depressants like opioids or alcohol

What Are Some Common Benzos and What Are the Symptoms of Benzodiazepine Addiction?

In use medicinally since the 1960s, benzos have a high potential for abuse because of their capacity to build tolerance in users. This means the person taking them rapidly loses their natural ability to regulate the brain chemicals benzos impact. This, in turn, produces cravings for greater and greater quantities of the drug in order to achieve the same effect or simply return to a subjective “normal.” Benzos can also be psychologically addictive in that they produce a potent state of euphoric calm. Many people coping with life stressors may find this irresistible.

Diazepam (Valium) is one of the older benzos marketed. It can be used to help manage epilepsy or anxiety and is quite fast-acting, giving it a high addiction potential. Clonazepam (Klonopin) is another classic benzo that doctors use to treat seizures or panic. It’s likewise physically habit-forming and can be dangerous to stop suddenly without medical supervision. Among the newer benzos are Lorazepam (Ativan), used for seizure and short-term anxiety relief, and Alprazolam (Xanax), used for anxiety and panic. The latter is extremely widely abused and is also infamous for its suppression of memory formation. Sadly, in the long term, alprazolam can permanently deteriorate this cognitive capacity.

If a person is abusing benzos, they will likely engage in behaviors that demonstrate some level of rational impairment. For instance, they may make the potentially deadly choice to combine benzos with other respiratory depressants like alcohol. They may also go “doctor shopping” to try and get their prescription filled multiple times. Finally, they may quickly go into withdrawal if they try to quit on their own. Withdrawal typically includes nausea, anxiety, and cravings and starts as soon as 10 hours after the last use.

Contact Ray Recovery in Hudson, OH, for Help with the Symptoms of Benzo Addiction

Why put off getting help for benzo addiction today? While rationalizing benzo abuse may come easily because of its frequent origins in legitimate medical treatment, the drug’s dangers are very real. Seek assistance sooner rather than later, and regain control of your life and future. Call 888.598.6299 or fill out Ray Recovery’s confidential online form to begin discussing your options with a team member.