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Benzo Addiction treatment

It started with anxiety and fear. You went to your doctor because lately, it seems like no matter what social situation you are in, your anxiety is through the roof. He understands and prescribes you a benzodiazepine. You’ve never heard of this before, but he assures you it will help with your anxiousness. You leave feeling better than you have and head to the pharmacy.

benzo addiction treatment

After a few weeks of taking the medication, you find that it helps with more than just your anxiety. You feel calm, relaxed, and carefree, but sometimes you have to take more than one to feel these effects. Soon, you find you can’t function without them, taking one before work, before class, and before going to bed. This makes you run out before your prescription is due to be refilled, so you call your doctor to see if he can get you more. With concern, he feels it’s best to start tapering off and switching to a different medication. What does he know anyway?

Frustrated, you decide to ask your coworkers and friends to see if anyone else takes these medications. You need to get your hands on some because your anxiety is at an all time high, your hands shaking and your forehead sweaty. What is this, withdrawal? Are you dependent on benzodiazepines?

In 2021, benzodiazepines caused 994 overdose deaths in the state of Florida. In the same year in Hillsborough County, 63 overdose deaths were caused by benzodiazepines. At Clean Recovery Centers, we understand how scary the threat of an overdose can be. We work within our Suncoast communities to provide tools and education for those in need of treatment for benzodiazepine use disorder. Our locations each have a certified rapid-resolution therapist to dive into the root causes of addiction for our clients.

Benzodiazepine Addiction Treatment Options at Clean Recovery Centers

Benzodiazepines can take over life before you know it. Doctors prescribe them to help with anxiety, insomnia, and even alcohol withdrawal, but when they become a daily habit, it can be hard to break. At Clean Recovery Centers, we understand the pull that benzos can have, and our benzo addiction treatment program will target every aspect of addiction through our three-phase approach:

benzo addiction treatment

Benzo Detoxification

The first phase of treatment is called preparation. This includes a 24-hour detoxification period monitored around the clock medically and with emotional support followed by transitioning to residential I care. Benzos can alter the brain’s chemistry, and withdrawal symptoms can be unpleasant. Our staff provides the support needed during this challenging time in order to keep you focused on your recovery.

Residential or Inpatient Rehab Services

There are two stages to our residential treatment program.

  • Residential I – This is part of the preparation phase of the treatment program. Individuals are in a 24-hour, 7-days-a-week, live-in environment. Medical support is available if needed, but the main focus is on individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy. The length of stay in this treatment phase is 3-4 weeks.
  • Residential II – This is where the transition to phase two happens. Phase two is called action, where individuals confront where the addiction started and prepares them for independent recovery. At Clean Recovery Centers, this step is referred to as Day/Night Treatment, or DNT. While most clients choose to live in community housing on-site for this phase, it is not required. The program is a minimum of 30 hours of services per week. The four main focuses of DNT include experiential processes, defense mechanism identification, belief system exploration, and symbolic integration. All of these components are to help transition core beliefs and develop balance to a clean life. This phase of treatment typically lasts 2-3 weeks.
  • Mental Health Path – For those who have been diagnosed with a mental health condition during phase one, the treatment path can change to accommodate those needs first. Clients go into a residential II setting after detox and receive specific treatment for their diagnosis as well as education and medication management.

Outpatient Rehab Services

Phase Three of the treatment process is called maintenance. At Clean Recovery Centers, we have two versions of outpatient services, intensive outpatient and outpatient. For intensive outpatient, or IOP, the client can choose to reside in a 24/7 monitored transitional living on-site, in sober living, or at home. The program is 9 hours per week minimum and continues with individual counseling. 

Outpatient treatment is for those living at home or in sober living off-site and is 2 hours per week. Both services build on the skills learned in inpatient treatment and therapies to continue on the path to living fentanyl free. The length of stay for phase three is around 6-8 weeks.

What to Expect at Clean Recovery Centers During Benzo Treatment

The goal of Clean Recovery Centers is simple: help our clients get clean, live clean, and stay clean. 

We provide housing and meals at each location so your focus can be on healing. When it comes to benzodiazepine use disorder, it can be hard to remember what life was like before. Our dedicated team works with you through the root causes of your addiction, and teaches you life and coping skills to use during times of stress. 

You will be surrounded by peers of like-mindedness and hear their experiences as well as share your own. Together, with therapy and wellness programming, we will help you begin your path to recovery.

benzo addiction treatment

What are Benzodiazepines (Benzos)?

Benzodiazepines, also known as benzos, are medications typically prescribed for anxiety, insomnia, and to treat epilepsy. They work by using neurotransmitters in the brain, specifically enhancing the action of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). This slows the central nervous system, reducing feelings of anxiety and causing relaxation. Benzos are also prescribed to stop seizures and muscle spasms.

Benzo Withdrawal and Overdose

When benzos are used, even when taken as prescribed, dependence can occur. The brain becomes used to having them in the system, and when stopped suddenly, the brain will attempt to balance the chemicals without the benzo. This causes withdrawal to set in. Symptoms include:

  • Trembling
  • Irritability
  • Dizziness
  • Seizures
  • Hallucinations

It is always best to consult a doctor when trying to stop taking benzodiazepines. They can give advice and dosage recommendations to taper off the medication safely.

In the event that too many benzos are taken at once, an overdose can occur. Typically, benzos alone do not cause an overdose, it is more often seen when mixed with other substances. Signs of an overdose include:

  • Shallow breathing
  • Mood swings
  • Unconsciousness

If you or someone you love is experiencing a benzo overdose, seek medical attention as soon as possible. If breathing stops altogether, organ damage can occur and can possibly be permanent.

Get Help for Benzo Use Disorder Today

There is no shame in asking for help, especially when it comes to benzodiazepine addiction. The way that benzos work in the brain can cause dependence, even when taken correctly. By taking the step to seek treatment, you are beginning the process of taking control of your life. There is no greater reward than rediscovering yourself and your passions.

If you or someone you love is in the grips of benzodiazepines, there is hope for the future. Clean Recovery Centers has a unique three-phase approach to addiction treatment that dives into all aspects: physical, mental, social, and spiritual. Our dedicated staff will help you through therapy and skill-building to create the path to your recovery from benzodiazepine addiction. Call us today at (888) 330-2532 to learn more about our program offerings.

FAQs About Benzo Addiction Treatment

What medication is used for benzodiazepine cravings?

Typically, diazepam is used to taper off benzodiazepines.

What does benzo withdrawal feel like?

Similar to other substance withdrawal, benzodiazepine withdrawal will increase anxiety and cause physical symptoms such as nausea, trembling, and possibly seizures.

What signs to recognize that a loved one is abusing benzodiazepines?

Signs of benzo misuse in a loved one can include: they do not remember events correctly, they seem over relaxed, they have increased anxiety between uses, and they may move slower than normal.