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Klonopin (the brand name for clonazepam) is an anti-anxiety medication that is also prescribed for seizures. Klonopin is best known to treat panic attacks and other symptoms of anxiety disorder, such as insomnia. The effects of this fast-acting drug may last between 6 and 24 hours.
Some people find Klonopin desirable for these short-lived effects:
- Relaxed state of mind
- Easing of muscle tension
- Desire to sleep1
As with all benzodiazepine medications, Klonopin is highly addictive, even when taken as prescribed. People who use this drug for a moderate period of time build a tolerance to it. A tolerance to Klonopin is usually identified after the person’s body adapts to the drug until he or she eventually requires a higher dose to produce the original level of relief. Increased tolerance leads to a cycle of elevated use and dependence that ultimately leads to addiction and increased chances of overdose.
Signs and Symptoms of a Klonopin Problem
Klonopin abuse leads to the following symptoms, which will likely start as mild and increase with quantity and frequency of drug use:
- Slurred and slow speech
- Feeling and appearing dizzy
- Slowed reaction times
- Loss of dexterity
- Memory impairment, especially regarding events directly after using this drug
- Digestive distress, vomiting, nausea, or constipation
- Difficulty breathing
- Hives and/or rashes2
Integrated treatment for Klonopin addiction
People who struggle with Klonopin misuse often have other problems at the same time. Anxiety and depression often co-occur with Klonopin use disorder. Sometimes, people have medical conditions or chronic pain that contribute to Klonopin dependence. Integrated treatment is one way to treat multiple conditions in one safe location. Integrated treatment for Klonopin use disorder is more effective than older treatment models because it addresses underlying issues, complicating concerns, and patterns that may have kept addiction stronger in the past.
It is very important to tell your doctor about any medications you take with Klonopin, even if you are not supposed to take all of those medications or substances. For instance, mixing Klonopin with alcohol can lead to depressed breathing and even death. If you use Klonopin also use prescription opioids (painkiller medications), adverse reactions may occur and overdose can result. Many other drugs interact with Klonopin and it is important to seek treatment for all related conditions in the safest way possible. If you are honest with your doctor or treatment team, your recovery can be more comfortable and your life may be saved before it is too late.
Sometimes people misuse Klonopin in an attempt to self-medicate. This may happen when a person has an undiagnosed mental health issue, such as anxiety disorder, depression, PTSD, or bipolar disorder. Leaving any mental health disorder untreated is dangerous and unhealthy, but it is more risky whenKlonopin misuse is added to the mix.
Professional treatment can save your life. It is also a good idea for the person who uses Klonopin to seek medical support when trying to ween off of this powerful drug safely.
Klonopin Addiction Treatment and Family Help
Withdrawal symptoms of Klonopin addiction are serious, and detoxification should never be attempted alone. Inpatient treatment is helpful and may provide a comfortable atmosphere where vital signs can be monitored. A medically-supervised detox also offers the big benefit of helping a person wean off of the drug as rapidly as possible.
Outpatient treatment is also helpful, and can help when an individual desires to maintain more of a presence in his or her home life during addiction treatment. Alternative medications might be prescribed if the Klonopin use was the result of a prescription treatment of a legitimate medical problem, such as chronic seizures or severe anxiety.
Addiction that is left untreated will take on the symptoms of any other addiction. There will be an ever-present risk of overdose along with the symptoms of addiction. If dependence grows into addiction, the many negative results will take over the life of the Klonopin user. Drug use may even take priority over work obligations, family relationships, and friendships. Social withdrawal might lead to depression and further anxiety.
Skywood offers evidence-based treatment that is designed around each individual patient. If you are suspicious that someone you love is overusing Klonopin, take action today. Call us at 269-280-4673 and find out how we can help you and those you love today.
1 FDA Medication Guide. Klonopin. 2010. Retrieved 7 Jul 2017.
2 US National Library of Medicine. Klonopin-Clonazepam Tablet. Retrieved 7 Jul 2017.