At Lighthouse Recovery Institute, our Ativan addiction treatment program gives people the opportunity to immerse themselves in the recovery process. Our team recognizes that addiction is a disease, so we treat each person in our care with the dignity and respect they deserve. Discover more about our Ativan addiction treatment program today by reaching out to our friendly staff at 866.308.2090 or completing our online contact form.
What Is Ativan?
Ativan goes by the chemical name lorazepam and is a potent, immediate-duration benzodiazepine. This means it’s in the same chemical family as Xanax, Valium, and Klonopin. Ativan is most commonly used to treat anxiety and seizure disorders. This medication works by suppressing the central nervous system enough to relax the person taking it. In other words, they’re both central nervous system depressants that slow down our system. Side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, and disorientation. Ativan and alcohol both affect the same neurotransmitter, GABA.
This rapid onset of action is due to Ativan’s short half-life. It’s metabolized by the body very quickly and achieves peak blood levels within an hour. This makes it the fastest-acting oral benzo around and arguably more addictive than its counterparts.
Why Is Ativan Addictive?
Long-term use of Ativan and other benzodiazepines often leads to addiction. Over time the brain and body become accustomed to the effects of Ativan, and physical and emotional dependence can form. People who use Ativan over a more extended period, even when under prescription, run the risk of becoming addicted.
Ativan addiction can lead to even more severe anxiety than the user initially experienced, memory impairment, loss of coordination, disrupted sleep patterns, depression, loss of motivation, sexual dysfunction, and difficulty with relationships and daily life. Ativan withdrawal symptoms are also a risk of long-term use. When someone dependent on Ativan ceases using the drug suddenly, they can experience severe and even fatal symptoms.
Withdrawal symptoms from Ativan include:
- Memory loss
Acute Ativan withdrawal can be fatal for users due to the high risk of seizure activity during benzodiazepine withdrawal. This process can last for up to two weeks, with mild symptoms such as memory impairment or headaches lasting months in some cases.
Ativan Addiction Treatment Programs
Individuals seeking treatment for Ativan addiction often need drug treatment and clinical care for underlying anxiety disorders, which can fuel benzodiazepine dependence. At Lighthouse Recovery Institute, we are proud to offer dual diagnosis care for patients suffering from substance use disorder and mental health conditions, such as anxiety.
We offer medication management and psychiatric services and many auxiliary services such as brain mapping and gym access to treat addiction and anxiety effectively.
Some of the services we provide include:
- Medical detox
- Inpatient treatment
- Outpatient rehab
How to Recognize Ativan Addiction
Since Ativan is a prescription medication, it may be difficult to recognize signs of Ativan addiction in someone with an anxiety disorder who receives the drug from their doctor. However, some behaviors to watch out for can indicate that someone is struggling with Ativan addiction.
Someone dependent on the drug may take more than their prescribed dose or exaggerate symptoms to doctors. Furthermore, they might purchase the drug illegally on the street or tend to “doctor shop,” which is when they visit multiple doctors to collect prescriptions. More signs to look out for include seeing if they spend lots of money on the substance or display signs of intoxication.