Benzodiazepine is a psychoactive drug used to treat anxiety disorders, panic disorders, nervous tension, acute stress, and anxiety associated depression. Benzodiazepine slows down the activity of neurotransmitters in brain and gives relief from stress and anxiety. Benzodiazepine when consumed produces an initial euphoric feeling and mostly abused to experience the pleasure of feeling of drowsiness that it causes. Its abuse can produce side effects like muscle cramps, nausea, drowsiness, loss of concentration, loss of appetite, slurred speech etc.
Serious Side Effects Benzodiazepine is a highly addictive drug and tolerance soon develops with increasing amount of dosages that further leads to addiction. Unusual Risk Taking Behavior Prolonged exposure to benzodiazepine causes a person to show more unusual risk taking behavior, decreased inhibitions, show less fear of danger etc. Benzodiazepine alters the brain chemistry that causes feeling of fearlessness that can lead the abuser to engage in dangerous acts. Such decreased inhibitions can result in person suffer from injuries, accidents, incurring debt etc. Depresses Mood, Thoughts of Suicide or Hurting Themselves Benzodiazepine changes the chemical structure of brain that causes the abuser to feel depressed, sad, and worthless. It also causes abusers to feel about committing suicide or hurting themselves. The person looses interest in daily activities and appears tired. Hyperactivity, Agitation, Hostility, Hallucinations The person abusing benzodiazepine shows heightened levels of hyperactivity and restlessness. The person feels more agitated and hostile due to these increased levels of hyperactivity. Hyperactivity can lead to body injury, accident, or physical violence. The person can also experience hallucinations like hearing strange voices, see things that do not exist etc. Fainting Benzodiazepine abuse can cause the person to experience loss of balance, coordination, fainting, lightheadedness etc. Seizure Benzodiazepine abuse can cause person to experience muscle twitching or convulsions that result in seizures. It further results in loss of consciousness, speech difficulties, and confusion. Urinating Less or Not At All Benzodiazepine abuse affects the urinary system and the ability to urinate. Prolonged exposure can cause the person to pass very less urine or even lead to anuria which is complete stoppage of passage of urine. Blurring Of Vision The persons abusing benzodiazepine may also suffer from eye sight problems and blurring of vision. Jaundice Benzodiazepine abuse also causes liver damage and dysfunction. Damage to the liver further leads to jaundice.
Physical Effects: Benzodiazepine abuse can be physically and emotionally addictive. Muscle Cramps Persons abusing benzodiazepine have found to suffer from muscular side effects like muscle crams, twitching, muscle pain, muscle rigidity, and joint pain. Nausea Benzodiazepine abuse can cause gastrointestinal side effects like nausea and vomiting. These side effects are not serious but immediate medical treatment should be initiated if noticed. Diarrhea Other forms of gastrointestinal side effects include diarrhea. If diarrhea is noticed for more than 24 hours, immediate medical attention needs to be sought as it can cause dehydration or cardiac arrhythmias. Drowsiness Benzodiazepine acts as a depressant on the Central Nervous System (CNS) and causes drowsiness among the person abusing benzodiazepine. Lack of Coordination Benzodiazepine abuse affects the Central Nervous System and the person shows lack of coordination in the activities performed. Loss of Appetite Persons abusing benzodiazepine may suffer from loss of appetite and subsequently lose weight. Loss of Concentration Abusing benzodiazepine can also have mental side effects, and impair and affect the person’s ability to concentrate and perform regular tasks. Slurred Speech The person abusing benzodiazepine can have a slurred speech and is often seen in confused state of mind.
Sudden cessation of benzodiazepine intake can cause the person to experience severe withdrawal symptoms like seizures, convulsions etc. Addiction to benzodiazepine can be effectively cured through detox programs at rehabilitation centers under the observation of trained physicians. Detox programs help in early recovery of the addicted person and cope with withdrawal symptoms.
By Nate Rodney MBA
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