How Long Does It Take To Get Addicted to Benzos?

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Benzodiazepines, commonly known as benzos, are medications prescribed to treat a range of conditions, from anxiety and panic disorders to insomnia and seizures. While they can be effective in managing these conditions, they also carry the risk of addiction and dependence when used improperly or for prolonged periods. In this article, we’ll delve into the topic of benzodiazepine addiction, exploring their addictive nature, the timeline for addiction development, and how we can support you on your path to recovery.

If you or a loved one is struggling with Benzodiazepine addiction or in need of Benzo detox, call us now at (844) 338-6972 or verify your insurance today.

Why Benzodiazepines are Prescribed

Benzodiazepines are prescribed to alleviate symptoms associated with anxiety, panic disorders, insomnia, muscle spasms, and seizures. Xanax, a prescription medication, is commonly prescribed to individuals with panic disorder and various anxiety disorders. Xanax is the brand name of the medication, while its generic form is known as alprazolam, which falls under the category of benzodiazepines. Benzos are one of the most commonly prescribed prescription medications. Between 2004 and 2019, doctors in the United States prescribed over 376 million doses of Xanax, or alprazolam. This equates to an average of more than 23 million prescriptions annually.

What Exactly are Benzos?

Benzodiazepines belong to a class of medications known as central nervous system depressants. They have a calming, or sedative effect. They work by enhancing the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter that inhibits brain activity, resulting in a calming effect on the central nervous system.

They are commonly prescribed due to their ability to induce relaxation, reduce anxiety, and promote sleep. Some well-known benzodiazepines other than Xanax (alprazolam) include Valium (diazepam), Ativan (lorazepam), and Klonopin (clonazepam).

Are Benzos Addictive?

Benzodiazepines do have addictive properties, especially when used for an extended period of time or in higher doses than prescribed. The risk of addiction increases with long-term use or misuse of these medications. Addiction to benzos can develop gradually, and individuals may not realize they have become dependent until they attempt to stop using the medication.

How Long Does it Take to Get Addicted to Benzos?

Building a tolerance to benzos can occur within a few days, while the onset of physical addiction may take only a few weeks. The timeline for developing an addiction to benzodiazepines varies from person to person and depends on several factors, including:

  • Duration of use: Long-term use of benzodiazepines increases the risk of addiction.
  • Dosage: Higher doses or frequent use can accelerate the development of dependence.
  • Individual susceptibility: Some individuals may be more prone to developing addiction than others due to genetic, environmental, or psychological factors.

Signs of Benzo Addiction

As individuals often follow their doctor’s recommendations when taking this medication, many may be unaware of the timeframe for developing a Xanax addiction. Without appropriate attention, those who become addicted to benzos may face significant physical and psychological consequences. 

Signs of benzodiazepine addiction may include:

  • Increased tolerance to the medication, requiring higher doses to achieve the desired effect.
  • Withdrawal symptoms when attempting to stop or reduce the dosage.
  • Persistent cravings for the medication.
  • Trying to illegally obtain benzos.
  • Combining the medication with alcohol or other drugs.
  • Continued use of benzos despite negative consequences on personal, professional, or social aspects of life.

Factors Influencing Addiction Development

In addition to the above factors, certain lifestyle factors and co-occurring mental health conditions can also contribute to the development of benzodiazepine addiction. Stressful life events, trauma, and a history of substance abuse can increase the likelihood of addiction. Additionally, individuals with underlying mental health disorders, such as depression, anxiety disorders, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), may be more susceptible to benzodiazepine addiction as they seek relief from their symptoms.

If you find yourself questioning the timeline for developing a benzo addiction due to misuse, it’s essential to seek guidance from a physician or a trusted addiction treatment specialist in your area. Port Charlotte Detox is here to serve you and help mitigate the severe consequences associated with Xanax addiction.

How is Benzo Addiction Treated?

Treatment for benzodiazepine addiction typically involves a comprehensive approach that addresses the physical, psychological, and social aspects of addiction. Medical detoxification is often the first step, during which individuals undergo supervised withdrawal to safely manage withdrawal symptoms. Behavioral therapies, such as Medication-Assisted Treatment, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), help individuals identify and change unhealthy thoughts and behaviors associated with addiction. Counseling and support groups provide emotional support and teach coping skills to prevent relapse.

Find Benzo Detox in Florida Today!

Understanding the risks and signs of benzodiazepine addiction and how long it takes to get addicted to benzos is crucial for early intervention and effective treatment. If you or someone you care about is struggling with benzodiazepine addiction, Port Charlotte Detox Center is here to help. Our compassionate and experienced team is dedicated to providing personalized treatment and support to help you overcome addiction and reclaim your life. Contact us today to learn more about our Florida detox programs and how we can assist you on your journey to recovery.

Get The Help You Need Now

Living with addiction comes with feelings of guilt, shame, pain, and sorrow. Life can become heavy and it can be hard to see a way out. At Port Charlotte Detox, we have empathy and compassion for your experience and have created a seamless admissions process so you can get the quality of care you deserve. Did you know that most major insurance plans may cover the cost of detox? Call us at (844) 338-6972 or verify your insurance now.