Find out everything you need to know about Ativan addiction and treatment by consulting this helpful guide.
1. What are the Uses of the Drug, Ativan?
2. What are the Precautions to Be Taken?
3. Addiction to Ativan and withdrawal symptoms
4. Drug rehabs are helping patients all over the world
5. Financing the rehab process
When talking about addiction and how it has increased in recent years and has affected the country’s economy severely, you might wonder how common addiction really is. Is it really as bad as everyone says? Or is it, in fact, underestimated? In the United States itself, in the last couple of decades, the addiction problem has shot up to many times the amount of what it was in 1999. More often than not, it is people aged between 18-25 that experience drug addiction.
While people find it easy to get high on recreational drugs, there are also a few pharmaceutical drugs that can be abused by addicts. Medicines that are used to treat pain and anxiety can be quite addictive, so someone using the drug could easily become addicted to it without realizing that they have become dependent. One such drug is Ativan.
Ativan is a brand name for Lorazepam, which is a drug that doctors prescribe patients to treat anxiety and depression caused by anxiety. It’s prescribed by doctors as a short-term relief drug for anxiety episodes and depressive symptoms caused by anxiousness. Ativan addiction is not uncommon among users of the drug. As the drug brings them instant relief from bad feelings, the users are sometimes unknowingly becoming addicted to it. Apart from treating anxiety related issues, Ativan can also be used to treat seizures during alcohol withdrawal, as well as nausea, and vomiting that can be caused when someone is going through the process of chemotherapy.
As already mentioned, Ativan is used to treat anxiety, depression caused by anxiety, and alcohol withdrawal, but it is also one of the commonly prescribed drugs for use in the treatment of insomnia or agoraphobia (fear of particular places, or of certain situations.) Ativan belongs to the class, benzodiazepines, which means when these drugs are consumed, it works on bodies, brains, and central nervous system to provide rapid relief from anxiety or panic. Ativan is a sedative, and it cannot be purchased without a doctor’s prescription.
Ativan is not approved for consumption by children under the age of 12 or below. It can also be used to give relief to patients who have anxiety before going through any kind of surgical procedure. The drug should only be taken as prescribed by the doctor. The dosage may vary according to the users’ age, medical condition, and response to the treatment they are receiving. This medicine is supposed to be taken orally, so it should not be diluted in any kind of liquid, powdered or mixed with other kinds of medicine; this can lead to many other severe health-related dangers.
If used for a prolonged period of time, there is the potential for Ativan addiction. It’s only to be used for short term medical use, and taken only a couple of times a day. The Ativan tablets should be kept away from children and adults for safety purposes, and it should be stored in a tightly closed bottle at room temperature.
Ativan, being one of the benzodiazepines, has chemical effects on the central nervous system of the drug user. So there are a number of side effects that a person could experience when they use the drug. The side effects may include but are not limited to fatigue, drowsiness, amnesia, confusion, disorientation, headache, visual disturbance like blurry visions, and slurred speech. However, if the patient takes the medicine as prescribed by their doctors, there is less of a chance of these side effects taking a toll on the patient. However, if problems continue for a long time, patients should get in touch with their doctor. If prolonged side effects occur or if they become more severe, talk to a medical professional immediately; on occasion, complications may result in fatal conditions.
Some people have also experienced a small decrease in their blood pressure, which is nothing to be worried about. However, if the issue continues or worsens, they should get in contact with the doctor who has prescribed the medicine. When the patient visits the doctor, they should let their doctors know if they have any kind of allergic reactions to any kind of drug, as it might have an adverse effect on their bodies. Pregnant women are not to be prescribed this drug, as it may cause weakness and trouble in breathing, which could prove fatal to the baby.
When the doctor prescribes this medicine, patients should let the doctors know not only about allergies to any kind of drugs but also of kidney disease, liver disease, breathing problems, mental disorders, etc. When you’re open about your health condition to your doctors, then they can prescribe you the right medicine.
Ativan users are discouraged from sharing medicine with anyone. They should not use it longer then they are supposed to. High doses of Ativan can lead to death by overdose. Drinking alcohol is strictly prohibited while taking Ativan. It’s possible that drinking alcohol while taking Ativan could lead to overdose and cause harm or even death to the patient.
A person is considered an addict if they cannot stop using a specific drug, pharmaceutical or recreational, for a long time, and they become dependent on it. Sometimes, dependency causes a person to be unable to hold down a job or perform well in school due to the effects of the drug and its withdrawal symptoms.
Ativan addiction is no different. It was first approved for sale in 1977. Ever since then, the users of Ativan are only growing every year. Addiction does not happen in a day or two. It sneaks up on a person without them even realizing it. When they do, it’s already too late for them to get rid of the substance as, without it, they feel like depressed, anxious and useless. As Ativan is a drug that mainly deals with calming of nerves when a person is anxious or panic, the primary instinct of a user is to get their hands on the drug every time they feel anxiety.
It takes 12 hours for an Ativan tablet to be completely absorbed into the user’s system, so taking more than one dose within 12 hours may not feel like much at first, but this is what ultimately turns into addiction at a later stage. However, the time period that Ativan stays in a person’s system might also depend on age, weight, kidney function, metabolism, and genetic factors. So the timing may vary from person to person. So it’s important for everyone to follow your doctor’s instructions very carefully while taking Ativan to avoid any kind of Ativan addiction.
When a person is using Ativan for a long time, it would also be painful and hard for them to stop using the drug all at once, completely. They would suffer from acute withdrawal symptoms, which include but are not limited to insomnia, mood swings, panic attacks, difficulty concentrating, muscle pain or stiffness, headache, and sweating, etc. So, instead of ceasing the consumption of the drug entirely, decrease the intake dose slowly and then come to a stop. However, it’s easier said than done. When a person’s body is so used to consuming a certain kind of drug, it’s not easy for them to stop consuming it on their own. Visiting a doctor in such cases would help them understand the procedure and how to deal with every kind of withdrawal symptom that the patient might suffer from.
These are the reasons why a person should consider checking into a rehab program to help with their Ativan addiction. Accompanied by those common withdrawal symptoms, the patient might also have hallucinations, weight loss, and other complications. The return of anxiety and insomnia is considered to be one of the most common withdrawal symptoms. A person uses Ativan to get rid of these problems in the first place. So when a person becomes totally dependent on the drug, they could get some sleep, and reduce their anxiety attacks to a managable level, but when they stop taking the medicine after they realize how addicted they have become, it’s common for them to experience difficulty dealing with their daily lives.
Insomnia, another common side effect of withdrawal, could lead to mood changes, which is not a good thing for a working person or a student. Gradually, they would lose interest in their jobs, or studies leading them to lose their jobs, or failing their classes. So it’s crucial for drug users to attend rehab sessions and get the therapy they require to lead a healthy life after their system is free of the drug.
Transitioning from a life where substance abuse is common to a life without the substance is not easy. It’s easy to say that love from family and friends help, and in fact, it does, but there are moments when a person would want to slip back into old unhealthy habits. Resisting this urge is achievable by the strong will of the person in question, help from professionals, and of course, immense support and love from family and friends.
In some countries where substance abuse is a huge problem there is usually available treatment, which is hopefully easily accessible by the public. When someone has been using drugs for a long time, it is helpful to have professional involved in treating their addiction. Depending on the person, the time they have been using the drug, and even the rehab center itself, the process can differ.
Although there are four major steps for a person with an addiction problem to get their treatment, some rehab facilities might not include a crucial step, detoxification. In those cases, the patients need to go through the detoxification process on their own or with the help of someone who is experienced in the field. The other steps of the rehab process include intake, rehabilitation, and aftercare.
- The intake process consists of evaluating the severity of substance abuse of the patient and planning the rehab process accordingly, and the time they would require to go through the process.
- The detoxification process (if available) is all about helping the person through the withdrawal symptoms when they stop using the drug that their body is so accustomed to.
- The rehabilitation process includes therapy and extensive counseling sessions that provide the patient with care and correct their drug-related antisocial behaviors. They also provide ways to teach a person how to cope without drugs and teach them how to not turn to drugs even when the times get hard. Most rehab facilities allow friends and family of the said person to attend therapy sessions so that they understand the severity of the problem and how to help the patient throughout and after the rehab process to lead a clean, normal life.
- The aftercare process typically includes providing long-term support to the patients who went through the rehab process in their clinic and help them to keep control in a situation that could possibly trigger a relapse. There is nothing worse than a relapse because it’s like all the hard work, patience, time, and money spent to get through the rehab goes down the drain. No one would want it to happen. So aftercare is essential in identifying the situations that could be triggering.
Ativan addiction can be caused by various factors including genetic predisposition, environment, and peer pressure. Whatever the reason is, everyone deserves to get the help that they seek. Since family issues could take a toll on children, many kids turn to drugs as an outlet for their problems.
There are three types of rehab facilities that are available where patients can get help.
- Inpatient rehab: In these kinds of rehab facilities, the patients stay in a hospital or clinic under the observation of doctors and experts. They are supervised during treatment so docctors can chart their progress and see how they are responding to treatments provided to them.
- Outpatient rehab: In these kinds of rehab facilities, patients are allowed to stay in their own homes and attend rehab clinic for their therapy session at a time slot allotted for them. This rehab procedure is also available to patients after they go through the inpatient rehab process to keep tabs on their progress, especially those who have a history of long term drug use.
- Residential Rehab: Instead of staying in a hospital or clinical environment, a residential rehab facility allows patients to stay in an environment that is set up in a way like a home would be. During the term of their treatment, the patients are required to stay in the residential setup, and they are provided with all the help they need.
It’s no secret that rehab can be expensive. It’s highly unlikely that everyone looking for the help they deserve would be able to cover the expenses with their savings. If a patient has health insurance, they should ask their provider if the policy covers drug rehab. If it does, then it’s good for the patient. If not, various financial institutions provide loans for the rehab process. There is also an option of getting financial help from friends and families. However, if the patient has a good credit score, there would still be various financial centers that would not hesitate to give out a loan.
Ativan addiction is not uncommon among teenagers, youths, and adults as well. So if a friend or person in the family shows addiction symptoms, it’s your duty to get them the help that they deserve. Everyone deserves to live a normal life, so if someone wants to get help and stay clean for the rest of their lives, turn their life around for the better, we can always provide them with help and care. We should also be able to provide them with an environment where they would not even think about going back to their lives where the drug was their only outlet for pain and stress.