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What Are the Dangers of a Benzo Addiction?

man with hands on his head learning the dangers of benzo addiction

People across the country take benzos every day. Prescribed for a range of symptoms, Benzodiazepines also supply the brain with high dopamine levels. Dopamine is a highly motivating chemical that gives us feelings of joy and pleasure. The more often someone takes benzos, the less GABA and dopamine their brain will produce. This can lead to benzo abuse and addiction. Unfortunately, benzos can be dangerous. Luckily, a benzo addiction treatment program can help.

If you or someone you love is struggling with benzo abuse, A Better State is here to help. We understand the dangers of benzo addiction can have on a person. Our outpatient treatment programs for mental health and addiction in our Hudson, New Hampshire clinic provide the community with holistic, trauma-informed, dual diagnosis treatment. Reach our staff at 781.412.1488 to learn more about the risks of benzo abuse and begin treatment today.

What Are Benzodiazepines and the Dangers of a Benzo Addiction

Benzodiazepines are a type of synthetic drug affecting GABA production. Xanax, Valium, and Klonopin are three of the most popular benzos that doctors prescribe daily. Because benzos are a prescription drug, they may seem safer than illicit drugs. Unfortunately, they can be just as addictive because they change a person’s brain chemistry. The calming effects of benzos make them highly addictive.

Benzos are often prescribed for two to three weeks to relieve insomnia and anxiety. For many, benzos can help with major life changes and sudden trauma. If someone takes benzos for longer than prescribed or if they take more than prescribed, withdrawal symptoms may occur. If benzos are taken for an extended period, the brain may stop making GABA altogether.

Dangers of Benzo Abuse and Withdrawal

Because benzos flood the brain with GABA and dopamine, during withdrawal, the brain lacks GABA and dopamine. The most common, dangerous effects of benzos include:

  • Short-term memory loss
  • Trouble understanding language
  • Difficulty following conversations
  • Trouble understanding objects in space
  • Loss of language skills and reading comprehension
  • Confusion

Long-term benzo abuse and addiction can cause a person’s perception of reality to change. This can be alarming and dangerous to the person taking benzos and those around them. Medical intervention is necessary for those experiencing the effects of long-term benzo use. During withdrawal, someone may experience irrational thoughts and feel they cannot survive without more of their prescription.

This is the brain’s natural reaction to chemical dependence. Benzo withdrawal affects cognition and can be dangerous when someone attempts to quit cold turkey. Initial symptoms like insomnia and anxiety may return at a higher intensity. Withdrawal symptoms can be scary and long-lasting. A condition called PAWS, also known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome, can cause withdrawal symptoms to persist or return for a year or more.

Start Benzo Addiction Treatment in New Hampshire Today

Because benzos relieve anxiety and insomnia, they are easy to abuse. Unfortunately, the dangers of benzos often outweigh their temporary benefits. If you or someone you love is struggling with benzodiazepine dependence, our team can help. A Better State’s holistic, trauma-informed outpatient clinic can help you find the right treatment plan for your needs. With partial hospitalization program (PHP), intensive outpatient program (IOP), and traditional outpatient treatment, our programs include:

  • Anxiety treatment
  • Depression treatment
  • PTSD treatment
  • Prescription drug treatment
  • Cocaine treatment
  • Meth treatment
  • Art therapy
  • Opioid and opiate treatment
  • Trauma therapy
  • Benzo treatment

Our Hudson, NH clinic provides New Hampshire with alternative and evidence-based therapies, like art and meditation in a group, individual, and family settings, to help you and your loved ones recover and thrive together. A Better State understands the dangers of benzo addiction and can provide individualized treatment for you and your loved one.

Learn More About the Risks of Benzo Addiction at A Better State

If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction to benzodiazepines, it’s important to understand the risks. Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs that includes some of the most commonly prescribed medications in the world, such as Xanax, Ativan, and Valium. They are also some of the most widely abused drugs, often used to self-medicate anxiety, stress, and other mental health conditions.

Tolerance occurs when a person needs to take increasingly higher doses of a drug to achieve the desired effect. Dependence occurs when a person experiences withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop taking the drug. If you or someone you love is struggling with benzodiazepine addiction, it’s important to seek professional help. At A Better State, we offer various treatment options for those struggling with addiction. Our team of experts will work with you to create a customized treatment plan that meets your unique needs. Call us at 781.412.1488 to learn more about the benefits of outpatient benzo addiction treatment.