Benzodiazepines are effective central nervous system depressants that have been used for decades to remedy an endless list of disorders. Klonopin addiction stands as one of the most taxing prescription-related problems facing the medical front today. Habitual use of prescribed dosages usually has a 33% potential for producing dependency and subsequent withdrawal syndrome. According to surveys, half of those placed under prescription for 6 months become physically dependent on the drug. Apart from this subset of potential victims, recreational abusers have almost 100% probability for dependence and addiction relative to the pattern of use and physiology state of user.
Klonopin is one of the most potent benzodiazepines available today, exhibiting the definite properties of an anticonvulsant (to treat seizures), amnestic (for memory deficits), anxiolytic (for anxiety), hypnotic (to induce sleep), muscle relaxant (for muscle spasms) and sedative (to depress the nervous system). This means they treat, among others, epileptic seizures, panic and anxiety disorders, restless leg syndrome, insomnia, Schizophrenia depression, Tourette syndrome, and depression among others.
Klonopin addiction is very common, for obvious reasons. Primarily, CNS depressants like Klonopin slow down normal brain function to enable the individual remain in sedated and contented state. The drug has a relatively long half-life and remains in the body for up to 50 hours, creating a lasting and euphoric high which becomes very desirable. People with a lower level of psychological stability tend to divert from correct prescriptions, an issue that further complicates mental health. As such there must be special regulations governing the dispensing and monitoring patients to prevent tolerance, dependence and addiction.
An increase in dosage beyond what the doctor prescribes means that the body becomes tolerant to the drug faster than usual, and consequently forces the user to consume high amounts and for longer periods than recommended. Klonopin addiction drives abusers to seeing multiple doctors in a bid to get larger amounts at once. This is accompanied by withdrawal symptoms when intake is delayed or stopped, an apparent lack of control, and obsessive-compulsive seeking of the drug.
Given the myriad of issues that Klonopin treats, spotting unusual and inconsistent use of the drug is relatively easy. When levels of the drug subside in the system, patients feel a hangover effect. This or even a slight decrease in regular dose will create uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms, while an abrupt stop will result in adverse and sometime fatal consequences.
Klonopin produces some mild side effects such as drowsiness, lack of muscle coordination, memory deficits, blurry vision, increased saliva secretion and urination, and change in libido. When these symptoms escalate to hives, swelling of tongue and face, hoarseness, difficult breathing, and seizures, immediate treatment is necessary.
Potentially fatal consequences are common when Klonopin addiction is combined with abuse of alcohol, depressants and other drugs. This intensifies the effects of the drug as well as the adverse effects that come with misuse. Withdrawal symptoms has been reported to continue for months or years in about 10-15% of the cases of long-term use, with signs being similar and usually worse than what was being treated by Klonopin in the first place.
The fact that Klonopin primarily affects the brain and central nervous system directly means that suicidal or homicidal thoughts are not uncommon. Thousands of these and other crimes in the US are linked to this addiction. Long-term users who exhibit problems with psychosis, irritability, anger management, anxiety and hallucinations are most likely to engage in behavior that poses a hazard for themselves and those around them.
There is no known treatment program that works flawlessly for all addicts; every addiction case is special and different from others. As such, rehabilitation is customized depending on the distinctive effects of the drug and the extent of damage. For long-term abusers, it is advisable to opt for inpatient care where close monitoring can be done to guarantee full recovery.
The minimum recommended time for intensive rehabilitation is 30 days to ensure that the drug is out of the system and the patient is on a solid road to recovery. This is usually followed by an extended period of complementary counseling and group support. Alternatively holistic therapy including acupuncture, yoga, sauna, Chiropractic treatment, body hydration and cleansing diets are usually very effective in supporting patients undergoing treatment for Klonopin addiction.