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5 Signs of a Benzo Addiction

a man sits at his desk with hands together near his mouth thinking about the signs of benzo addiction

Doctors across the United States and New Hampshire prescribe benzos daily. They are one of the most frequently prescribed medications today. Benzodiazepine is a class of synthetic drugs that calms the nervous system by flooding the brain with GABA. This naturally occurring chemical relaxes people and helps the body fall asleep. In most cases, benzos are designed for short-term use during highly stressful life events. When taken long-term or abused, they can have dangerous health effects, including addiction. A benzo addiction treatment program is the safest, most effective way to prevent long-term effects and help someone avoid benzo relapse.

Are you struggling with benzos? Our team can help. We can help you identify the signs of benzo addiction for yourself or a loved one. A Better State provides comprehensive, holistic treatments for addiction and mental health. Learn more about our outpatient benzo addiction treatment at 781.412.1488 and get started today.

How Do Benzos Affect the Body?

An increasingly popular drug, benzos like Xanax and Klonopin help relax the nervous system. This can help people sleep and manage anxiety. Along with GABA, benzos release dopamine, the chemical that causes pleasure, joy, and addiction. These chemicals supply the brain with higher levels of GABA and dopamine than the brain naturally makes. Over time, this causes the brain to stop producing GABA and dopamine, causing withdrawal and adverse health problems. Signs of benzo use include:

  • Difficulty speaking or understanding language
  • Trouble following conversations
  • Memory loss
  • Trouble understanding objects

Their calming effect can help insomnia and anxiety and dampen stress and psychological pain. For this reason, benzos have become incredibly popular. For short-term use, benzos act as a band-aid to reduce symptoms and help people live their daily lives. However, when a person stops taking benzos, they will experience a rebound effect. This means their initial symptoms will worsen, leading many people to continue using benzos, abusing them, and often leading to addiction.

Symptoms of Benzo Addiction

Benzos are highly addictive because of their effects on the brain. Like other substance use, benzo addiction can cause erratic behavior, changes in mood, and secretive behavior. Benzo abuse includes taking more than prescribed, taking multiple prescriptions, taking benzos with other drugs or alcohol, and taking a medication longer than recommended by a doctor.

Because benzos affect the brain, someone may seem intoxicated when on benzos and agitated when they crave more. They may also seem tired and have trouble tracking conversations or managing social situations at home, school, or work. Other signs of benzo addiction include:

  1. Stealing pills
  2. Filling multiple prescriptions
  3. Increased alcohol consumption
  4. Mood swings
  5. Confusion and paranoia

Benzos’ mood swings and cognitive effects can be more substantial for those with co-occurring disorders like bipolar disorder, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). They may also abuse benzos more quickly, especially if their co-occurring disorder is untreated. Because benzos change a person’s perception and cognition, someone may struggle to walk, talk, or operate a car while using benzos.​​ This can make someone a danger to themselves and others.

Learn More About Benzo Addiction Treatment in New Hampshire

Benzo addiction treatment can help someone safely stop taking benzos and address the root causes of anxiety and insomnia without medication. During treatment, clients undergo various therapies and programs to help restore their GABA and dopamine production while developing healthy coping mechanisms for stress and trauma. If someone you love is showing signs of benzo abuse or addiction, our team can help. Continued use of benzos can cause detrimental long-term effects.

At A Better State, we treat benzo addiction alongside mental health conditions and other addictions. Our clients enjoy outpatient services that meet their busy lives with a holistic, trauma-informed approach. Whether you’re looking for daytime or evening intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) or partial hospitalization programs (PHPs), we can help. Serving the New Hampshire area, our clinic has a program to help you and your loved ones recover and thrive.

Discover More Signs of Benzo Abuse with Help from A Better State

Learning about the signs of benzo addiction can help you get recovery treatment. While benzos are a medication used to treat anxiety and panic disorders, they can be highly addictive and lead to abuse. If you’re concerned about your use of benzos or someone else’s, looking for these signs of abuse can help determine treatment options. Don’t let benzos control your life. Call us at 781.412.1488 to create a benzo addiction treatment plan that suits you.