There are numerous addictive and dangerous drugs in the world. Most people think of dangerous drugs as those that they buy illegally. While street drugs are definitely dangerous, legally prescribed drugs can be dangerous, too. The rise of benzo addiction is one clear sign that supports this fact.
What Are Benzos?
The term “benzo” is short for benzodiazepine. Doctors prescribe these tranquilizers to treat legitimate medical conditions such as:
- Muscle spasms
- Alcohol withdrawal
Many well-known brand name drugs like Xanax and Valium are in this category. Because of the popularity of these drugs, doctors in the United States prescribe them at a high rate. Unfortunately, the high number of prescriptions is why benzo addiction is such a serious concern.
The Dangers of Benzo Addiction
While benzos have a place in terms of medical use, they’re also extremely dangerous and highly addictive. When people take benzos, their dopamine levels spike, making them feel good. It doesn’t take long for them to start taking more than their doctors originally prescribed. However, taking too much can lead to many problems.
Along with cognitive impairment and slowed motor skills, abusing benzos for too long can worsen the symptoms that the drugs treat. For example, people who abuse benzos tend to suffer from anxiety, which is one thing that benzos help fight.
The more benzos that people take, the more likely they are to develop life-threatening side effects. For instance, benzos slow their breathing. If they take too many, they could stop breathing altogether.
Benzo Withdrawal Symptoms
People generally start feeling benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms three to four days after they stop taking benzos. It’s pretty rare for people to experience benzo withdrawal when they take the drug normally. Common symptoms include muscular pain, nausea, headaches, and sweating. Some people even have muscle tremors and heart palpitations. Difficulty concentrating and sleeping can lead to increased irritability.
Prolonged Use Can Increase the Risk of Disease
The physical side effects of benzo addiction are bad enough. In addition, other mental conditions can develop over time. For example, doctors suggest that abusing benzos can increase the likelihood of Alzheimer’s disease. The chances of developing neurodegenerative diseases also increase if people take benzos for more than five years. However, other factors such as overall health and demographics affect the risks as well.
Some People Are More at Risk of Developing Addiction
Certain factors may put people at a higher risk of developing a benzo addiction. For example, statistics show that females are more likely to develop an addiction to benzos than men. Additionally, hanging out with others who use these drugs also puts people at a greater risk.
A history of trauma or child abuse puts people at a greater risk of abusing any drug, including benzos. Those of a lower socioeconomic status or who don’t have a job are more likely to abuse benzos as well.
Let Ashley Addiction Treatment Help You Overcome Your Benzo Problem
At Ashley Addiction Treatment, we work hard to help you overcome addiction. If you suffer from Xanax addiction or any other benzo dependency, reach out to us right away. We can create a custom treatment plan that addresses your needs. We offer many fantastic substance abuse programs for both men and women, including:
- Residential and outpatient levels of care
- Pain management
- Young Adult Extended Care for 18–25-year-old males
- On-site medical care, including detox if necessary
As part of your treatment, we also offer beneficial amenities such as a wellness center, personal trainers, and a dietary team. We invite you to take advantage of holistic care options like massage, acupuncture, and yoga classes, too.
Don’t let benzo addiction keep you from living life to the fullest. Get the help that you need today at Ashley Addiction Treatment. Contact us at 866-313-6307 for more information about our addiction treatment approaches.