Ativan is a prescription medication that is part of the Benzodiazepine drug class. The medications in this drug class, which are also referred to as Benzos, are commonly prescribed to treat patients who struggle with anxiety, depression, and panic disorders. Ativan works by slowing the rate of internal mental processes that may be hyperactive. Because of the powerful, euphoric sensations associated with this drug and its addictive properties, many people misuse and abuse Ativan. In fact, even some patients who have been prescribed Ativan by their doctor may abuse the substance.
Ativan Addiction Signs
Ativan, which is also known as lorazepam, creates more than a euphoric high for its users. Intake may also result in an overwhelming sense of calmness, drowsiness, and muscle relaxation. Effects may start to be felt as soon as 45 minutes after intake and can last for 20 hours or more. The medication is available in both liquid and quick-dissolve tablets. Regardless of how you take Ativan, it is essential only to take this medication as prescribed by your doctor. Otherwise, a strong addiction may develop.
When you take Ativan in a manner that is not prescribed by your physician, such as in greater quantities or more frequent intervals, the effects can be much more dramatic. This is because Ativan directly affects how brain chemicals are balanced. How do you know if you have an Ativan addiction?
Some signs of a possible Ativan addiction are taking Ativan when it is not prescribed to you or in a manner that is not prescribed. Some addicts increase their dosage without consulting with their doctor in an effort to experience a more potent or longer high. You may also be struggling with an Ativan addiction if you steal or borrow the medication from someone who has an active prescription or if you lie about how much you take. Addiction is also associated with crushing, snorting the pill formula, and mixing Ativan with alcohol or other drugs. Some addicts may also start to feel strong withdrawal symptoms as the body metabolizes Ativan, and this can create a craving sensation.
Whether you have experienced these or other signs of an addiction, you do not have to overcome your Benzodiazepine addiction on your own. Established drug addiction treatment programs can help you to overcome your addiction with fewer complications and side effects.
Ativan Addiction Symptoms
Those who suffer from an Ativan addiction often show several symptoms that friends and family members may notice. Addicts may increasingly pull away from loved ones as their addiction strengths. They often lose interest in things they once found enjoyable, and they may have trouble holding down a job. This can lead to financial issues. Some people who abuse Ativan may participate in risky behaviors that are not in their character. Even once these symptoms have been pointed out by friends and family members, addicts may not be interested in stopping their drug use, or they may not feel able to do so on their own.
Ativan will gradually be metabolized by the body over the course of several days. This will make the effects less noticeable to the user. Those who have a strong addiction to Ativan may experience several unpleasant and potentially dangerous side effects if they do not continue consuming the drug to satisfy their addictions. These side effects can actually feed the addiction. The side effects include dizziness, confusion, anxiety, memory loss, and sweating. They also may include seizures, depression, hallucinations, a sense that contact with reality is broken, insomnia, and more. Addicts who attempt to get clean on their own may also experience these withdrawal symptoms.
The Effects of an Ativan Addiction
As is the case with other Benzos, Ativan is a positive allosteric modulator. It affects the brain’s neurons that are impacted by the GABA neurotransmitter. By doing so, it causes reduced neural activity throughout the brain and spinal cord. Because of this, all cognitive and physical functions controlled by these areas may be impacted by Ativan use.
Many people compare Ativan to Xanax because they are in the same drug class and produce similar effects. However, Ativan is more powerful, so a smaller dose of Ativan may have the same effect as a larger dose of Xanax. In addition, the effects of Ativan can be felt for a much longer period of time.
The impacts of an Ativan addiction on your life can be extreme. Because Ativan slows down neurotransmitters, both anxiety and depression can become problematic with misuse and with withdrawal. These factors alone can be detrimental to personal relationships, professional endeavors, and more. However, they are only a few of the many effects that may be associated with Ativan addiction. For example, when an Ativan addict does not give in to a craving, feelings of nausea, dizziness, and loss of appetite can grow. The addict may notice a faster heart rate, numbness and tingling in his or her appendages, irritability, and even flu-like symptoms. These feelings can intensify until more Ativan is consumed or until the substance has completely left the body several days later.
Both the effects of using Ativan and withdrawing from it can have detrimental effects on the addict’s ability to function regularly. As the strength of an Ativan addiction grows, the addict may be less able to maintain a steady job. This feeds into financial issues. Personal relationships may suffer because of lying, risky behaviors, and a general withdrawal from regular routines and activities.
Ativan Addiction Treatment
At some point, many addicts will become aware of the incredible impact that an Ativan addiction is having. In other cases, an addict may only see the devastating effects of an Ativan addiction after it is pointed out by a friend or family member. Regardless of how you have become aware of your addiction, it is important to seek professional treatment for an addiction to Benzos in a respected facility. Coming down from Benzos and eliminating the substance completely from your body can take a lengthy amount of time. During this time, your body will experience incredible adjustments to its brain chemicals, which can create unpleasant and even dangerous effects throughout the body. With medical intervention, a knowledgeable, experienced healthcare team will closely monitor you throughout the withdrawal process. In addition, you may receive medications that can make it safer and more comfortable for you to rid your body of Ativan.
Even after your body is clear of Ativan, it is essential to note that the desire to continue using Ativan can be substantial. Many people initially start using or misusing Ativan to manage anxiety and depression or to enjoy a sense of euphoria that can feel intoxicating. These may still be present after the withdrawal process has been completed. With this in mind, an inpatient or outpatient treatment program often follows withdrawal. During these programs, the recovering addict may learn about coping mechanisms, build a supportive community and take other steps to reduce the chance of a relapse.
Explore Treatment Options Today
At Long Island Treatment Center, our compassionate and experienced team is committed to helping those suffering from drug addiction live a clean, healthy lifestyle. If you have been struggling with an Ativan addiction, rest assured that help is available. Through a consultation with our team, you can learn about the treatment options that may be right for you and get all of your questions about Ativan addiction treatment answered. Schedule your consultation with us today as the first step toward a better life.
What happens if you take Ativan everyday?
Ativan is typically only meant to be used on a short-term basis, as taking it for long periods of time can lead to tolerance, dependence, and addiction. Some of the other risks associated with taking Ativan include drowsiness, impaired coordination, and slowed reaction times. If you take Ativan everyday, you may find that your body quickly becomes tolerant to the drug, requiring higher and higher doses to achieve the same effect. As a result, it is important to only take Ativan as prescribed by a doctor and to talk to a doctor if you think you may be addicted to the drug.
How do you reverse the effects of Ativan?
While Ativan is generally considered to be safe, it can cause some unwanted side effects, such as drowsiness, headache, and dizziness. In some cases, it may also lead to more serious problems, such as seizures or respiratory depression. If you are concerned about the effects of Ativan, there are some things you can do to reverse them. For instance, you can talk to your doctor about tapering off the medication gradually. You can also try natural remedies such as exercise, relaxation techniques, and omega-3 supplements. Lastly, make sure to stay well-hydrated and avoid alcohol while taking Ativan. By taking these steps, you can help to ensure that the effects of Ativan are not permanent.
Is Ativan a habit forming drug?
Ativan is generally considered to be safe and effective, there is potential for abuse and addiction. Because Ativan can cause drowsiness and impair motor skills, it should not be taken when driving or operating heavy machinery. If you have a history of substance abuse, you should speak with your doctor before taking Ativan. Withdrawal symptoms can occur if Ativan is stopped suddenly, so it is important to taper off the drug gradually under medical supervision.