Clonazepam is in a class of drugs called benzodiazepines and is used to treat the symptoms of epilepsy and panic disorders. Clonazepam works by affecting chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced.1 Prolonged use of clonazepam can lead to addiction, especially when used in larger amounts than prescribed by a physician or in combination with other drugs.
Because clonazepam works in the brain, it can cause mental and emotional side effects especially in someone with an undiagnosed mental illness or history of depression. Knowing what physical and emotional side effects can happen when using this drug can help you or a loved one recognize problems and get treatment.
Clonazepam Physical Side Effects
Clonazepam use causes many physical side effects, and these side effects can lead to emotional difficulties in the person using the drug and in his or her family members. Some of these side effects include the following:
- Difficulty thinking or remembering
- Changes in sex drive or ability
Each of these side effects interferes with a person’s ability to perform normal tasks, carry on healthy conversations or simply be present in a family. Seeing your loved one struggle with confusion or the inability to remember places or people can lead to anxiety or depression. Having to care for a loved one who needs constant supervision due to dizziness or unsteadiness can result in sleep deprivation and exhaustion in the care giver. If you have a loved one who is dependent on or addicted to clonazepam, getting counseling or joining a support group can help you deal with your own emotional health.
Clonazepam Emotional Side Effects
Clonazepam slows chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced or agitated. Most people who use the drug have physical side effects that diminish over time, but the emotional side effects of clonazepam abuse can be long-term and severe.
- Sleep disturbances
- Problems with thinking or memory
- Loss of interest or pleasure
- Trouble concentrating
- Changes in behavior
- Mood swings
For those who struggle with depression while using clonazepam, it’s important to discuss any personal or family history of the disorder. This is especially true in those who have a personal or family history of the disorder with your doctor. Clonazepam can also cause changes in behavior, agitation, severe mood swings, aggressiveness, irritability and nervousness. When someone is addicted to clonazepam, diagnosis of any underlying mental illness is a crucial part of treatment. Proper diagnosis and treatment of both the addiction and the mental disorder increases the chances of treatment success and decreases the risks of relapse.
Find Help for Clonazepam Addiction
Clonazepam is highly addictive and can produce emotional side effects in those who are dependent on the drug and in their loved ones or care givers. If you or a loved one struggles with clonazepam addiction, we are here to help you. Call our toll-free number, 855-808-6212, to speak to an admissions coordinator. We are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions about addiction and help you find treatment for your unique situation.
1 “Clonazepam (Klonipin).” National Alliance on Mental Illness, NAMI, Oct. 2016.
2 “Common Side Effects of Klonopin (Clonazepam) Drug Center.” RxList. Accessed Oct. 31, 2018.
3 “Clonazepam (Oral Route) Side Effects.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 1 Mar. 2017.