Over the last 20 years, benzodiazepine dependence has skyrocketed in America. Widely available and highly addictive, benzodiazepines are perfectly situated in a position ripe for misuse. During the process of recovering from benzo addiction, one will encounter the effects of benzodiazepine withdrawals, also known as benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome. Knowing how long benzo withdrawal symptoms last as well as the potential dangers one may encounter during withdrawal can be key in both the recovery and life-saving process.
“Benzo” is the shortened term for benzodiazepine. Benzodiazepines are a classification of psychoactive drugs that possess depressant properties. As a depressant, benzos lower brain activity. As a result, they treat conditions such as insomnia, anxiety, and seizures.
First discovered and made available in the 1960s, benzos have become one of the most widely distributed drugs in America. As such, they have quickly gained a reputation for misuse, as their wide availability and highly addictive properties make them a very real threat.
As one begins the journey to retake their freedom and end their dependence, they will inevitably come face to face with benzo withdrawal. Many of the withdrawal symptoms can be dangerous if left unsupervised, and it is highly recommended to get medical supervision during benzo detox.
Benzo withdrawal symptoms may include the following:
These withdrawal symptoms can range in severity depending upon individual factors, as well as factors unique to the specific benzo used. Typically, the severity of symptoms depends upon how long the person used or misused benzos. This being said, it is still possible to come up with a likely timeline for withdrawal. So just how long do benzo withdrawal symptoms last?
Typically, the average person experiencing benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms will experience the most severe symptoms during the first 1-4 days. Symptoms typically begin around 24 hours after the last use. The timeline for the withdrawal process increases due to factors such as extensive use or the type of benzo used. With these variables in mind, one could experience major withdrawal symptoms from anywhere between a few days to several months. The amount used, type of benzo, length of use, and method of withdrawal will all play determining roles in the length of the withdrawal process.
With the proper medical supervision, the risks of benzodiazepine withdrawal are greatly reduced. However, attempting a solo withdrawal without a proper support system or medical supervision can be extremely dangerous and sometimes lethal. Quitting “cold-turkey” can be dangerous, as this method often sees the most intense withdrawal symptoms as well as the most severe physical and psychological reactions.
The unpredictability of the withdrawal process can make it even more dangerous, and having the right people close by to help in the event that something goes wrong is crucial to one’s success. Those who seek the proper supervision and support during this trying time will most often see the highest rates of success. A proper withdrawal plan will help to give the best chances of a successful recovery without relapse.
Incorrectly approaching the detoxification and withdrawal process can lead to dangerous and sometimes lethal situations. However, there are safer methods by which one can free themselves from benzo dependence.
Above all, an appropriate support system, as well as medical supervision, can give one the highest likelihood of success. It is safest to undergo withdrawal under medical supervision. Medical supervision ensures qualified staff will manage any complications. Chances of relapse and reuse greatly decrease when the detoxification process is undergone using the appropriate methods of withdrawal. Finding the proper support system could mean the difference between a successful recovery and tragedy.
At Retreat Atlanta, we are waiting with open arms to give you the tools and support necessary to overcome your benzodiazepine dependence for good. Located in Eatonton, GA we offer a relaxing and comfortable environment in which you can confidently take on the detoxification and rehabilitation process. There has never been a better time to regain control of your dependency and your life. Contact our admissions page today and take the first steps in your recovery journey.