According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 12.5% of adults in the U.S. use benzodiazepines, and of those, 2.1% have a benzo addiction. At Malibu Detox, we offer treatment for people battling a benzo addiction.

The Basics of Benzo Addiction

Benzodiazepines are prescription medications that have a sedative effect on the central nervous system. Doctors prescribe them to treat anxiety disorders, like generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and more.

Benzos are also helpful in the treatment of insomnia. Usually, doctors prescribe them for two to four weeks. However, benzos are highly addictive and can become a concern even in that short period of time.

There are different types of benzos, including hypnotics and anxiolytics. The effects of hypnotic benzos are shorter in duration, so they work better for treating insomnia and other sleeping disorders.

Hypnotic benzos include:

  • Flurazepam
  • Loprazolam
  • Nitrazepam

Anxiolytics produce longer-lasting effects and can help with anxiety disorders. Examples of these types of prescribed benzodiazepines are:

  • Diazepam (Valium)
  • Lorazepam (Ativan)
  • Alprazolam (Xanax)
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin)

Some of the street names for benzodiazepines are benzos, Xannies, Bars, Xanbars, Planks, Bricks, K-pin, Downers, Tranqs, Howards, and Nerve Pills.

Signs of Benzodiazepine Addiction

A benzo addiction can begin quickly, as the body develops benzodiazepine dependence from the sedative effects the drug has on the central nervous system.

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), some of the most common physical signs of a benzo addiction are:

  • Muscle weakness
  • Blurred vision
  • Drowsiness
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting

There are also cognitive and behavioral signs of benzodiazepine addiction, including:

  • Lying
  • Isolation
  • Confusion
  • Memory issues
  • Doctor shopping
  • Impaired judgment
  • Poor concentration
  • Forged prescriptions

Someone with a benzodiazepine addiction may also experience mood swings, emotional detachment, and severe irritability.

Overdosing on benzos can also occur. As your body builds tolerance for the drug, you need to use more of it to achieve the effects you want, and this can result in taking too much. Some of the signs of an overdose include:

  • Decreased respiratory activity
  • Sudden lack of coordination
  • Muscle weakness
  • Slurred speech
  • Dizziness
  • Sedation
  • Coma

An overdose can result in death, so prompt action is vital.

Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms

When you stop using benzos, your body will respond with withdrawal symptoms. You can have milder or more severe symptoms, depending on how long you have had a benzo addiction, your usual dosage, your physical health, and other factors.

The American Academy of Family Physicians states that some of the withdrawal symptoms you may experience include:

  • Anxiety
  • Muscle spasms
  • Difficulty walking
  • Sensory hypersensitivity
  • Perceptual disturbances
  • Restlessness and agitation

You may also experience benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome. This syndrome can cause sleep disturbances, severe anxiety, the sensation of tension, nausea, and dry retching. Typically, these symptoms last from one to four days.

Benzo Addiction Treatment Program

Attempting to end a benzo addiction on your own can result in relapse and even overdose. For this reason, it’s important to turn to an addiction treatment center like Malibu Detox. We offer a number of services to help you in your recovery process.

Benzo detox is a challenging part of the recovery journey, and it’s best if you choose medical detox. Medical detoxification helps you avoid the worst withdrawal symptoms while allowing you to remove the drug from your body in a safe manner.

Our team of medical professionals will monitor you for the duration of your benzodiazepine detox and do everything they can to keep you comfortable.

At Malibu Detox, we offer medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for those battling a benzodiazepine use disorder. Medication can make the withdrawal process easier, and it can also help you focus on your therapy sessions instead of on the cravings you would otherwise experience.

Because we perform a complete physical and mental health assessment when you turn to our treatment center, we can put together an individualized treatment plan to give you the help you need.

We offer a residential benzo treatment plan for those with a benzo addiction. This is an excellent option for people who have just begun their recovery from substance abuse and who are at a higher risk of relapsing.

It’s also a good option for people who do not have a home environment supportive of their recovery or for those who face a mental health disorder that might complicate treatment.

Our residential program offers 24/7 medical and mental health support, including help with withdrawal symptoms, individual therapy sessions, family therapy, group therapy, and support groups.

Some of the behavioral therapy options we provide to help with addiction treatment as well as with co-occurring disorders include:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Motivational interviewing
  • Equine-assisted therapy
  • Experiential therapy
  • Art therapy

When you identify the underlying cause of your addiction, you will have a better understanding of how to deal with the triggers and the challenges that life poses.

Living with a physical dependence on benzos does not end with your time in residential treatment. You will need to continue your recovery process with the support and guidance of professionals. That’s why we offer aftercare services to make the transition easier.

The professionals at our Malibu Detox treatment facility recommend continuing therapy sessions for mental health conditions that affect your life.

We offer medication management as well as introductions to leading 12-step programs that can help you achieve a successful recovery. We also offer treatment for family members so they can express how benzo misuse affected their lives.

In addition, our treatment center provides relapse prevention education for those battling substance use disorders.

Get Help for Benzodiazepine Addiction

Benzodiazepine addiction can affect your entire life and the lives of those around you. If you struggle with an addiction with or without co-occurring mental health disorders, we can help at Malibu Detox.

Our team of medical professionals is here to help you with benzodiazepine addiction. We understand the challenges you face on your journey to sobriety, and we can put together a treatment plan that meets your needs.

Contact us today at Malibu Detox to learn more about benzodiazepine addiction and how to get help.

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