Benzodiazepine

Benzodiazepine

Benzodiazepine, also known as “benzos,” is a depressant, psychoactive drug, which are commonly called tranquilizers. Often, benzos are prescribed to relieve anxiety and muscle spasms, induce sedation and prevent seizures.  Occasionally, it is also used before dental and medical procedures.  The prescribed dose of the drug determines its effects. Low doses produce sedation and are often used to manage insomnia and anxiety.  Moderate doses prevent seizures, and high doses induce sleep.

Prolonged daily use or abuse of benzodiazephins can result in a variety of negative side effects, including amnesia, drowsiness, blurred vision, and hostility, and result in physical dependence.  Withdrawal symptoms are typified by anxiety, sensory distortion, headaches, muscle aches, depression, hypersensitivity to touch and pain, and, in some cases, psychosis or epileptic seizures.  In addition, withdrawal has been linked to suicide, particularly in young people.  Therefore, treatment for benzodiazepine dependence requires detoxification followed by a recovery phase during which the user learns how to live drug free.