How to Help a Clonazepam Addict

  1. Table of ContentsPrint
  2. Help for Clonazepam Addicts
  3. Is Clonazepam Addictive?
  4. What Are the Signs of Clonazepam Addiction?
  5. Am I Addicted to Clonazepam?
  6. Clonazepam Addiction Treatment
  7. Call Our Hotline Today

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Help for Clonazepam Addicts

Clonazepam (brand name: Klonopin) is a prescription tranquilizer used to treat seizures and panic disorder. It falls within the class of drugs known as benzodiazepines, which are known for their sedating effects.

Taking clonazepam without following prescription guidelines can result in a number of risky consequences--including addiction, dependence, and dangerous side effects. In fact, nearly one million emergency department visits involved benzodiazepines (such as clonazepam) from 2005 to 2011, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA).

Fortunately, recovery is possible. Treatment for clonazepam abuse should be professionally monitored. It can take place in a residential facility or as part of an outpatient treatment program, depending on your needs.

Clonazepam Help question 1


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Is Clonazepam Addictive?

Clonazepam is classified as a Schedule IV substance by the Drug Enforcement Agency. This means that it has a known and accepted medical use, but still has a risk of physical or psychological dependence.

Combining benzodiazepines like clonazepam with alcohol or opioid pain relievers can increase your risk of serious health consequences by 24 to 55%.

Benzodiazepine drugs work by reducing activity throughout the brain, leading to reduced anxiety, sleepiness, and muscle relaxation when taken as prescribed. As a person uses increasing doses of clonazepam non-medically, their brain will eventually begin to need more and more of the drug to achieve the same "feel-good" results. This is called tolerance, and it is a primary building block of addiction.

Clonazepam is often abused along with other substances, most commonly alcohol or opioids. Such a combination of substances increases the risk of dangerous side effects due to the interaction of both drugs' sedative or depressant actions.

In 2011, U.S. forensic laboratories found clonazepam involved in 10,686 cases, with increasing numbers through 2012. Abuse of this drug can have serious consequences, and proper treatment is an important step toward recovery.

Clonazepam Help question 2


What Are the Signs of Clonazepam Addiction?

When taken as prescribed, clonazepam can be a very therapeutic medication, with minimal health risks. When abused in higher or more frequent doses, however, the drug can have dangerous side effects.

Physical Signs and Symptoms

  • Problems with coordination.
  • Increased saliva production.
  • Difficulty sleeping.
  • Muscle or joint pain.
  • Frequent urination.
  • Blurred vision.

Psychological Signs and Symptoms

  • Panic attacks.
  • Anxiety.
  • Aggressive behavior.
  • Memory impairment.
  • Suicidal thoughts.

If you are experiencing any of the effects of clonazepam addiction, don't wait to get treatment. Call 1-888-744-0069 to discuss your recovery options today. Calls are confidential and advisors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Clonazepam Help question 3


Am I Addicted to Clonazepam?

Clonazepam abuse and addiction can cause many different mental changes. Long-term users may find themselves suffering from psychological issues that they did not have to face before the addiction started:

  • Problems sustaining attention.
  • Problems with memory.
  • Abnormal outbursts of aggression.
  • Depression or suicidal thoughts.

Addiction also tends comes with the feeling of needing clonazepam. You may use clonazepam even when it is causing issues in your life, and you may neglect loved ones and your responsibilities in order to obtain and use the drug.

You may experience financial troubles and legal problems due to continued, uncontrolled use of the drug.

Clonazepam Help question 4


Clonazepam Addiction Treatment

Treatment for clonazepam addiction can take place in a residential or inpatient recovery facility or as part of an outpatient treatment program, but it will always begin with detoxification. Detox involves getting rid of all of the clonazepam in your body, and it is a necessary step in the treatment process.

sad-woman-sitting-on-ground-against-wall-clonazepam-depressionProfessional supervised detox programs will help manage withdrawal effects that may include:

  • Rebound anxiety.
  • Depression.
  • Insomnia.
  • Sensory overload.
  • Sweating.
  • Muscle cramping.

Acute benzodiazepine withdrawal can be dangerous. In serious cases, seizures and extreme confusion paired with body tremors are possible, and will necessitate close medical supervision and pharmaceutical management throughout the process..

The next step is a formal treatment program. This will involve group and individual therapy and counseling sessions that will help you:

  • Discover the reasons and triggers for your addiction.
  • Learn proactive ways to prevent relapse.
  • Practice coping skills to help you effectively deal with future temptations.

If you feel like you need to completely escape your current environment in which you are using and put all of your energy into recovery, then an inpatient program is the right choice for you. Inpatient programs involve staying for a predetermined amount of time at a treatment facility where you will receive around-the-clock care while living in a completely sober environment.

If you absolutely cannot take time away from home or work responsibilities, then an outpatient program may be the best option for you. Outpatient programs allow you to continue living at home while you work through treatment. You will check in with a treatment facility at predetermined intervals for medical check-ins and therapy sessions.

Once you have completed a formal treatment program, you have a number of options for aftercare to continue getting support in your ongoing recovery efforts. Aftercare can involve:

Clonazepam Help question 5


Call Our Hotline Today

If you are concerned about your clonazepam use, or that of a loved one, don't hesitate to seek help.

Call one of our addiction treatment support specialists at 1-888-744-0069 to discuss treatment options and how to find the right program.

Clonazepam Help question 6


Sources:

  • O'Brien, C. P. (2005). Benzodiazepine use, abuse, and dependence. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 66 (2). 28-33.
  • Clonazepam: MedlinePlus Drug Information. (n.d.). Retrieved December 18, 2015, from https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a682279.html
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. (December 18, 2014). The DAWN Report: Benzodiazepines in Combination with Opioid Pain Relievers or Alcohol: Greater Risk of More Serious ED Visit Outcomes. Rockville, MD.
  • Salzman, C., for Task Force on Benzodiazepine Dependency, American Psychiatric Association. Benzodiazepine dependence, toxicity, and abuse: a task force report of the American Psychiatric Association. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association, 1990.
  • Julien, R. M. (2005). A primer of drug action (10th). New York: Worth.
  • Ciraulo, D. A., Sands, B. F., & Shader, R. I. (1988). Critical review of liability for benzodiazepine abuse among alcoholics. American Journal of Psychiatry, 145. 1501-1506.
  • Gold, M. S., Miller, N. S., Stennie, K., & Populla-Vardi C. (1995). Epidemology of benzodiazepine use and dependence. Psychiatric Annals, 25. 146-148.
  • Ashton, H. (1995). Toxicity and adverse consequences of benzodiazepine use. Psychiatric Annals, 25. 158- 165.
  • Benzodiazepines. (2013). Retrieved December 18, 2015, from http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_chem_info/benzo.pdf
  • Lader, M. (1987). Long-term benzodiazepine use and psychological functioning. In: Freeman HL, Rue Y, eds. The benzodiazepines in current clinical practice. International congress and symposium series: proceedings of a symposium sponsored by Wyeth Laboratories. London: Royal Society of Medicine Services. 55-69.
  • Curran, V. (1996). Memory functions, alertness, and mood of long-term benzodiazepine users: a preliminary investigation of the effects of normal daily dose. Journal of Psychopharmacology, 6. 69-75.
  • van der Bijl, P. & Roelofse, J. A. (1991). Disinhibitory reactions to benzodiazepines: a review. Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, 49. 519-523.
  • Smith, B. D. & Salzman, C. (1991). Do benzodiazepines cause depression? Hospital and Community Psychiatry, 42. 1101-1102.
  • Busto, U., Sellars, E. M., Naranjo, C. A., Cappell, H., Sanchez-Craig, M., & Sykora, K. (1986). Withdrawal reaction after long-term therapeutic use of benzodiazepines. New England Journal of Medicine, 315. 854-859.
  • Ashton, H. (1991). Protracted withdrawal syndromes from benzodiazepines. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 8. 19-28.
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