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Clonazepam Abuse Symptoms, Signs and Addiction Treatment

Clonazepam is a prescription drug that belongs to a group of medications called benzodiazepines. It is used to treat anxiety, panic disorders, mania, spasticity and seizure disorders. The medication works by correcting chemical imbalances in the brain. Clonazepam also has muscle-relaxing and hypnotic properties, but unfortunately, many people use the drug for nonmedical purposes to achieve these effects.

Like other benzodiazepines, clonazepam is addictive. A person can form a physical dependence on the drug in as little as two weeks, even if he or she were using the drug as instructed. If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction to clonazepam or is otherwise abusing the drug, there are top-rated private treatment facilities available that can provide assistance with overcoming the problem. For more information about these rehab centers, call 1-800-943-0566.

Quotes from benzodiazepine addicts

“Withdrawal is an indescribable hell, but worth the pain and necessary as staying on them is not an option worth considering. While on Klonopin, I developed asthma that became a pulmonary problem. Asthma and bipolar symptoms have disappeared and many other health issues that were exacerbated by Klonopin have improved dramatically. Only a person who has been through benzo withdrawal can understand.” (source)

What is Klonopin?

Klonopin (clonazepam) is an intermediate-acting benzodiazepine drug introduced in 1975 (source) . It has strong sedative, muscle relaxant, anti-anxiety, and anti-convulsant effects, (source) (source 2) and is often prescribed for epilepsy, anxiety and insomnia. It reaches its peak effects in 1-2 hours, and can last up to 12 hours. Like most benzodiazepines, it has a heavy potential for addiction and abuse when used frequently. (source)

Other names for Klonopin

  • Clonazepam
  • Rivotril (source)

Google Trends: Searches for “Klonopin”

In the US, searches for “Klonopin” are chiefly concentrated in the south and southeast, particularly Alabama and West Virginia.

How many people used tranquilizers like Klonopin non-medically in the last month?

United States

In 2013, over 1.7 million people in the US said they had abused tranquilizers such as Klonopin in the previous month.

How many people used tranquilizers like Klonopin non-medically in the last year?

United States

Over 5 million people in the US said in 2013 that they had abused tranquilizers like Klonopin in the past year.

Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 1

Signs and Symptoms of Addiction

One symptom of clonazepam abuse or addiction is tolerance to the drug. After using the drug for a while, the body becomes used to the effects of the medication, requiring the person to consume increasing amounts of the drug to achieve the same effect. Another sign of addiction is the onset of withdrawal symptoms after ceasing use of the drug for a period of time. Withdrawal symptoms associated with clonazepam include:

  • Nausea, diarrhea or vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Rapid heartbeat or heart palpitations
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Panic attacks
  • Loss of memory
  • Dizziness
  • Sensitivity to light or sound

Other psychological signs of clonazepam abuse or addiction include feeling as though you must take the drug to get through the day, moving slower than usual, having difficulty concentrating and/or remembering facts or events and consuming the drug uncontrollably. External signs of drug abuse that can be noticed by others include reduced performance at work or school, abandonment of previously enjoyed activities in favor of drug use, illegal purchase of the drug and continued use of it despite the obvious negative consequences.

Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 2

Effects of Clonazepam Abuse

Clonazepam abuse can cause side effects. According to a 2006 study conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), approximately 33,557 of visits to emergency rooms were related to nonmedical use of clonazepam.

Abusing clonazepam is a risk factor for a drug overdose. As noted before, the body builds a tolerance to the drug. As the person increases the dose taken, the risk for overdosing becomes greater. The risk is compounded if the person consumes clonazepam with other drugs or alcohol.

An overdose of the prescription drug can cause drowsiness, confusion, coma and even death. Misuse of the drug can also lead to risky behavior. A person may engage in unsafe sex that can lead to unintended pregnancy or contraction of sexually transmitted diseases. The person may attempt to drive while under the influence of the drug and cause an accident or get pulled over by the police.

Klonopin-related emergency room visits due to nonmedical use

United States

Abuse of Klonopin is dangerous, and emergency visits linked to abuse of Klonopin have risen fivefold in the US since 2001.

Klonopin-related emergency room visits by people seeking detox services

United States

As Klonopin-related ER visits have risen, so has the number of people – now in the thousands – who come to the ER seeking detox services due to their Klonopin usage.

Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 3 Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 4

Clonazepam Abuse Treatment

Help from a professional abuse and addiction specialist may be needed to overcome a clonazepam abuse problem. Treatment can be obtained on an inpatient or outpatient basis at rehab centers all over the country. As part of the treatment program, the patient is first put through a detoxification program, which consists of either stopping consumption of the drug right away or gradually reducing the dosage to avoid withdrawal symptoms. In addition, you may be prescribed other medications to alleviate the withdrawal symptoms associated with ceasing use of clonazepam.

After you complete the detox program, the psychological aspects of your addiction will be addressed. Generally, treatment for a psychological addiction would include counseling or therapy that would help you understand the underlying factors that drove the drug abuse or addiction.

Clonazepam rehab programs can last anywhere from 28 to 90 days depending on the severity of the addiction and the patient’s physical and mental needs. To learn more about clonazepam abuse and clonazepam rehab centers near you, contact us using our confidential helpline at 1-800-943-0566.

Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 5

Clonazepam Statistics

Specific clonazepam abuse facts are not available. However, the class of drugs that clonazepam belongs to, benzodiazepines, are commonly abused. Typically, people who consume these drugs do so in combination with other drugs or alcohol. According to SAMHSA, the number of people seeking treatment for benzodiazepine abuse or addiction tripled in the 10-year period between 1998 and 2008. Almost 95 percent of people who sought treatment also abused another substance in addition to benzodiazepines.

Yearly deaths linked to Klonopin and other benzodiazepine use

United States

Deaths involving benzodiazepine overdose (CDC WONDER query, ICD-10 code T42.4)

Videos on Klonopin

Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 6

Teen Clonazepam Abuse

Teen abuse of clonazepam is on the rise. According to the San Diego Police department, this drug is being seized from students at junior high schools and high schools with increasing frequency. Interviews with users revealed that students preferred these drugs because they could obtain the same high as consuming marijuana without the telltale signs of cannabis use.

How many youth use tranquilizers like Klonopin non-medically?

United States, tranquilizers

Abuse of tranquilizers such as Klonopin is startlingly common among teenagers: hundreds of thousands admit to having tried it, including tens of thousands of children aged 12-13.

Clonazepam Abuse Quiz question 7

For assistance with finding a treatment center that can help a Clonazepam addict, call our private hotline at 1-800-943-0566.

Need Help Understanding Your Addiction Treatment Options? Call 1-888-747-7155.