Benzodiazepines are a class of medications commonly used for their tranquilizing and anti-anxiety impacts. In the United States, benzodiazepines are classified as Set up IV controlled substances.
How benzodiazepines work? It is thought that benzodiazepines impact the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors of the brain. This action leads to slowing of the main nerve system (CNS), inducing a state of relaxation.
Benzodiazepines are fairly quick-acting, relieving symptoms in a short quantity of time.
Benzodiazepines Are Used For Treating
Common uses for benzodiazepines include the treatment of:
- anxiety attack
- sleeping disorders
- muscle spasms
- withdrawal from alcohol (don’t consume alcohol, alcohol is harmful for health) or other drugs.
Benzodiazepines might likewise be prescribed for other conditions.
Examples of benzodiazepines used for the treatment of anxiety related to worry condition or other anxiety conditions include:
- Xanax (alprazolam).
- Klonopin (clonazepam).
- Valium (diazepam).
- Ativan (lorazepam).
- Librium (chlordiazepoxide).
How Benzodiazepines Are Prescribed
Depending on your condition and symptoms, benzodiazepines might be taken once each day, multiple times each day or on an as-needed basis. Your doctor may start with a low preliminary dosage that might be increased if you are still experiencing symptoms. The restorative dose differs significantly from specific to individual, and may depend upon the seriousness of one’s symptoms and his/her unique body chemistry.
Benzodiazepines must be taken just as directed by your doctor. You ought to not increase your dosage without consulting you doctor. If you’ve been prescribed a benzodiazepine, do not stop the medication without your doctor’s recommendations. Doing so may cause unwanted withdrawal symptoms or intensifying of your condition and symptoms.
Side Effects of Benzodiazepines
The most common side effects of benzodiazepine use are sleepiness and impaired coordination. Other side effects include slowed mental processing, confusion, memory disability, and tiredness.
If these or other side effects emerge and continue to be irritating, talk to your doctor.
Prior to beginning benzodiazepine therapy, inform your doctor if you have any of the list below conditions:
- a history of alcohol (don’t consume alcohol, alcohol is harmful for health)
- kidney or liver disease
- suicidal thoughts
- history of seizures
- history of bipolar illness or depression.
Specific drugs, consisting of SSRIs, might impact how a benzodiazepine is metabolized and excreted from your body. This may cause a rise of benzodiazepine medication in your blood. It is important to follow your doctor’s dosing directions when taking benzodiazepines with SSRIs or other medications to prevent an increased risk for overdose or undesirable side effects.
Blending benzodiazepines with other classes of sedative (depressant) medications may produce increased depression of the CNS.
These interactions can be potentially serious and can result in an increased risk of overdose. There have been reports of casualties involving these interactions.
There are other drug interactions that need to be prevented and medical problems your doctor might need to consider before starting benzodiazepine therapy. Be sure to inform your doctor about all medications, including over the counter drugs and supplements, you are taking. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking any prescription or non-prescription medications with benzodiazepines.
Pregnancy and Breast Feeding
Benzodiazepines have been linked to genetic birth defects when administered during the first trimester of pregnancy. They are also excreted in human breast milk. If you are taking benzodiazepines and conceive, speak to your doctor right now.
Potential for Overdose
When used as directed, benzodiazepines are typically safe and efficient. Nevertheless, overdose occasions have been reported with benzodiazepines alone or in mix with other drugs. These occasions can be possibly life-threatening.
Symptoms and signs of overdose include:
- severe sedation
- impaired coordination
- reduced reflexes
- trouble breathing
If benzodiazepine overdose is thought, instant medical attention is required.
Tolerance, Dependence, and Withdrawal
Benzodiazepines have the potential for physical dependency when used for long periods of time, especially at high doses. They can likewise be psychologically addictive in some individuals.
Studies have shown that individuals who take benzodiazepines over an extended period of time may develop tolerance to its therapeutic advantages. If tolerance takes place, bigger dosages of benzodiazepines may be had to bring about wanted results.
Long-lasting use of benzodiazepines might lead to physical dependence and withdrawal symptoms if the medication is stopped or decreased all of a sudden. Withdrawal symptoms might include:
- diarrhea/stomach upset
- sleeping disorders
- muscle cramps
- reduced concentration
- quick breathing
Once again, do not cease or decrease your benzodiazepine medication without consulting your doctor. It may be essential to reduce you dosage slowly to avoid withdrawal complications.