Rohnert Park, CA (PressExposure) July 10, 2009 -- Benzodiazepines are drugs used for a wide variety of medical purposes. Because of its sedative, hypnotic, anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, muscle relaxant and amnesic properties, benzodiazepines can be used in treating anxiety, insomnia, agitation, seizures, muscle spasms, as a premedication for medical or dental procedures, as well as medications used for alcohol withdrawal. According to california drug rehab center therapists, benzodiazepines are generally safe and effective for short term use, although cognitive impairments, or paradoxical effects such as aggression or behavioral disinhibition, occasionally occur. Long-term use is not recommended due to their propensity to cause tolerance, physical dependence, addiction and, upon cessation of use, a withdrawal syndrome.
Benzodiazepines Withdrawal Syndrome
Some of the withdrawal symptoms are identical to the symptoms for which the medication was originally prescribed. The ability to determine the difference between relapse and rebound is very important during the withdrawal phase and can often lead to a misdiagnosis. Withdrawal symptoms from low dose dependence typically last 6â12 months and gradually improves over that time period. Without any psychological reason, symptoms can fluctuate in intensity with periods of good days and periods of bad days until recovering in time. For this reason, many experts agree that after withdrawal from long term or even fairly short term use of benzodiazepine drugs, at least six months should have elapsed prior to re-evaluating the symptoms and updating a diagnosis.
According to california drug rehab center therapists, benzodiazepines withdrawal syndromes are varied from minor symptoms to fatal. An abrupt or over-rapid discontinuation of benzodiazepines may result in a more serious and very unpleasant withdrawal syndrome that may additionally result in:
* Convulsions, which may result in death * Catatonia, which may result in death * Rare chances to cause coma * It may also lead to suicide or attempted suicide * Self harm * Hyperthermia * Delusions * Homicidal ideation * Urges to shout, throw, break things or to harm someone (Violence) * Post Traumatic Stress Disorder * Organic brain syndrome * Psychosis * Confusion * Mania * Rarely causes a neuroleptic malignant syndrome like events * Delirium tremens
Some people experience little or no withdrawal when stopping long term benzodiazepine usage. It is not known for sure why there is such a variation between patients but recent research in animals suggests that withdrawal from sedative hypnotic drugs may be influenced by a genetic component. According to california drug rehab center patients, as withdrawal progresses patients find that their physical and mental health improves with improved mood and improved cognition.