Benzodiazepine Detox & Treatment in Alberta
Benzodiazepines are commonly prescribed central nervous system depressants and act on the central nervous system by slowing down brain functions causing a drowsy or calming effect. These drugs are prescribed for a variety of reasons and are also easily abused. Benzos cause the user to develop a tolerance and dependence on the drug. These types of prescriptions are not meant for long-term use and are prescribed for as-needed use; however, many people take them daily and remain on them longer than needed. When you become dependent on benzodiazepines it does become difficult to stop taking them because of the withdrawal pain.
Benzodiazepines are also a dangerous drug to be used with alcohol and other drugs as it does increase the chances of overdose. Overall throughout Canada, the number of benzodiazepine prescriptions has declined by close to 6%. In the province of Alberta there has also been a decline in the number of defined daily doses with a decrease of around 12%. In 2017 there were over 13,200 defined daily doses given per 1000 population. Throughout the country, the trend has been indicating that fewer people are being prescribed these drugs, but there are still countless Canadians who are abusing them. Benzodiazepines are often part of larger drug problems, and addiction to benzos can start in different ways.
When you are given a prescription for benzodiazepines it is to treat a particular health issue. There are a number of different brands such as valium, Xanax, Lorazepam, Klonopin, and Librium. These drugs create a calming sedative effect that can become addictive. The first problem that develops with daily use of benzodiazepines is the physical dependency. The person taking them develops a tolerance to the drug creating a dependency that must be met with more drugs. When this happens any drug dependency leads to addiction because the focus becomes meeting the body's need for the drugs. There is no ceiling effect with benzodiazepines, which means the longer you remain on the drug, the more you must take.
People all throughout the province of Alberta struggle with addiction and prescription drugs such as benzodiazepines are abused. If the addiction did not start through a prescription the drugs can be gotten through illegal street-level dealers. Addicts who are abusing other depressant drugs will abuse these drugs or use them in combination with stimulant drugs. Mixing benzodiazepines with other drugs is dangerous and does increase the chances of overdose. This is especially true when more than one central nervous system depressant is used together. The person abusing the drugs will risk severe respiratory failure possibly causing death. Someone who is abusing benzodiazepines requires intensive treatment.
The rehabilitation process for a benzo addiction starts with a detox. Throughout Alberta are both medical detox and traditional detox programs. The severity of the addiction determines the type of detox that is needed. More severe benzo addictions require a medical detox to help the patient taper off the drugs they are using. Traditional detox programs in the province could handle someone using these drugs, but it would not be a long-term heavy user. Detox is followed by either inpatient or outpatient drug rehab, and there are both options available in Alberta. It is a good idea to choose the right type of treatment for prescription drug addiction. Regardless of the type of addiction, there are always underlying issues and reasons why you started to abuse drugs or alcohol.