What is Klonopin?
Klonopin, the brand name for Clonazepam, is a benzodiazepine. Often prescribed for anxiety disorders, it is very similar to Xanax. Klonopin is often prescribed for anxiety because it slows brain function, resulting in a tranquil state that helps soothe symptoms of mental illness. Clonazepam is a round pill that is taken orally. The color of the pill can vary.
The brand names for other forms of benzodiazepines are:
- Xanax, or Alprazolam
- Valium, or Diazepam
- Librium, or Chlordiazepoxide
Just like any other prescription drug, there are side effects associated with taking klonopin. Not every side effect is a desired one, Some of the more common effects of klonopin may include:
- Sleep disorders
- Suicidal thoughts
- Decreased heart rate
- Slowed breathing
- Forgetfulness of events
Signs of Klonopin Abuse and Addiction
Developing an addiction to prescription drugs like Klonopin is a normal occurrence. Misusing or mistaking a substance can turn disastrous, but those with a history of drug and alcohol abuse are more susceptible. Developing a psychological dependence on benzodiazepines may cause someone to act differently in a variety of ways. If you or someone you know displays two or more of the following symptoms, a substance abuse disorder may be present:
- Needing to take more to achieve the same effects
- Impaired performance at work, school, or home
- Spending a considerable amount of time trying to get the drug, use, and recover from it
- Cutting themselves off from friends or family in order to use Benzos
- Craving the drug
- Intentionally misusing Benzos for intoxication or pleasure
- Decreased motivation or productivity
A physical dependence for Klonopin may cause the following addiction affects:
- Physical weakness
- Slurred speech
- Loss of coordination
- Difficulty breathing
Klonopin Withdrawal Symptoms
Depending on the length of excessive usage, withdrawing from Klonopin can be an unpleasant experience. If someone who is physically dependent on clonazepam abruptly stops taking it, they may experience life-threatening symptoms. Klonopin withdrawal symptoms may include seizures, psychosis, hallucinations, shaking, sweating, panic and anxiety, stomach pain, and sleep issues. These symptoms can be softened or avoided all-together by participating in a medically assisted drug detox.
Long-Term Side Effects of Klonopin Abuse
Clonazepam is an intermediate-acting benzodiazepine and is designed to be taken multiple times a day. Because of the constant dosage and strong effects, Klonopin addiction isn’t unusual. In fact, it is believed that at least one third of all patients who use clonazepam consistently will become physically dependent on it. Long-term Klonopin abuse often causes a person to develop a tolerance. When a tolerance is developed, users must take more and more to achieve that “high”. Over time, drug abuse chemically alters the brain and neurological pathways, and it then struggles to function normally without Klonopin use.
Long-term use can cause physical and psychological dependence, resulting in difficult withdrawal symptoms that could be life-threatening. Because of this, it is highly recommended that patients seek out treatment at a rehab center to help treat the symptoms if a patient has been abusing Klonopin for over four weeks.
Klonopin Addiction Treatment
When starting a Klonopin addiction treatment program, a medically assisted drug detox at a recovery center is the first step. Cleansing drugs from the system under the watchful eye of medical professionals makes withdrawal symptoms easier to manage. When detox symptoms are easier to manage, there’s a higher chance for sobriety. After detox and a physical and mental evaluation, each patient receives a personalized treatment plan based on their specific needs.
There are two general branches of addiction treatment programs: inpatient programs and outpatient programs. Inpatient programs require patients to stay in a treatment center long term. Residential treatment is the most attentive and intensive form of care, and is usually more successful because of it. Intensive outpatient rehab treatment programs allow for more flexible drug addiction treatments. Patients are allowed to go about their everyday life while checking into therapy when they have time. Both forms of drug rehab treatments may include individual therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy, twelve step programs, art therapy and more.
Regardless of the substance abuse treatment program, addiction therapy is a big part of substance abuse treatments. Different forms of addiction therapy, like individual therapy, behavioral therapy, twelve step programs, trauma-focused therapy and more, will provide you the tools needed to address mental illness, substance abuse and co-occurring disorders. Regardless of your choice of drug rehabs, recovery from Klonopin abuse is possible.