Benzodiazepine medications are often ranked in terms of their addictiveness level and overall likeability. In article, published in the journal CNS Drugs, researchers found that Klonopin (clonazepam) had an “intermediate abuse potential,” meaning that some people seemed willing to transition into abuse while taking the drug, while others seemed capable of keeping their impulses under control.
While these studies can certainly be interesting, they may also obscure the fact that Klonopin is intensely dangerous. In fact, it’s considered dangerous because some people who take the drug for only a short period of time develop symptoms of persistent addiction.
A person addicted to Klonopin has little to no control over the use of the drug. Cravings for the substance keep the person both looking for and using Klonopin, even though the person’s rational mind might suggest that the drug is harmful. The use is compulsive, and chemical changes in the brain are to blame.
The sedative quality of Klonopin can put the cells of the brain in a state of suspended animation for long periods of time. The cells aren’t trading electrical impulses at a normal rate, and in time, this slow pace can begin to seem natural or normal. When the cells are amended in this way, a physical dependence has set in. Without access to Klonopin, a person like this might feel ill or unhappy.
A study in BMJ suggests that dependence to benzodiazepines can take hold in as little as four to six weeks of regular use. People who are physically dependent may not have a psychological compulsion to use and abuse the drug, and it’s unclear when that change takes hold in some people, but it is clear that Klonopin is capable of causing intense damage in no time at all.
Stopping the Damage
While Klonopin can cause serious damage in no time at all, it’s not inevitable for people to develop addictions. With the proper type of treatment, people can gain control over their use of this drug and they can develop habits that are much more productive and healthy. Unfortunately, since Klonopin is so remarkably powerful, people who abuse the drug simply can’t stop their use abruptly. Instead, they’ll need to work with a team of professionals in order to truly get better.
In a formal program for Klonopin addiction, experts provide a tapering schedule of drugs, so the brain has time to adjust to sobriety. Then, therapy helps people to develop the skills they’ll need to stay sober for the rest of life. The work is hard, it can take months to complete. It might include:
- Individual therapy
- Group therapy
- Family therapy
- Relapse prevention coaching
- Support group work
But in time, people can gain control and really improve. If you’d like to get started on this journey, please call us at Black Bear Lodge. We provide comprehensive detox programming along with personalized therapy, and we can help you to move past your addiction and into a healthier, happier life. Please call us to find out more.