When you’re taking a physician-recommended drug like Valium, you may be slow to acknowledge you’re dependent. Signs that may show a developing issue include:
- Taking more than recommended without asking your primary care physician
- Pulverizing and snorting the pills
- Taking Valium more frequently than expected
- Disregarding responsibilities to take Valium
The drug diazepam (Valium) is one of the numerous prescription medications in the drug class known as benzodiazepines (BZDs). Valium might be prescribed to deal with various conditions, including muscle spasms and anxiety. Despite being a common medication, the average person may not completely understand its effects and possible risk for addiction.
Valium targets gamma-aminobutyric corrosive (GABA) receptors in the brain. When stimulated through the combination of drugs like Valium, these receptors are responsible for a heightened feeling of anxiety relief and sedation, as well as for anti-seizure and hypnotic (sleep-promoting) effects.
History of Valium
Until the last part of the 1990s, Valium was regularly utilized for the transient treatment of stress-related sleep deprivation and anxiety, creating a blissful state that earned it the moniker “Mother’s Little Assistant.” Since they’re cross-tolerant with liquor, benzodiazepine drugs are frequently used in the treatment of liquor withdrawal. They can be helpful in controlling potentially risky seizures that may emerge in association with liquor detox in people quitting alcohol after prolonged use.
Historically, Valium dependence has been generalized as an issue restricted to upper-middle-class women overwhelmed by their social schedule and duties at home. However, this drug is misused by individuals from all walks of life.
Valium abuse regularly takes place in individuals who have been prescribed the drug by their doctor. Resilience to the drug’s effects builds with continuous use of Valium and might prompt few patients to up the dosage. Most often, this happens in individuals who have been using the drug for half a year or more.
Side Effects of Valium Use
Valium and other benzodiazepines can cause various side effects. They include:
- Disarray, hallucinations, or abnormal contemplation and behavior
- Thoughts of suicide and despondency
- Animosity and antagonism
- Slowed breathing
- Muscle quakes
- Loss of bladder control
While this is anything but a thorough rundown of the potential impacts related to Valium use, it demonstrates exactly how powerful the drug is.
Dangers of Valium Dependence
If someone is overusing Valium, it may be time to look for warning signs of Valium dependence. Valium misuse and dependence have become commonplace in modern society. Often prescribed for momentary relief of muscle tension or anxiety, Valium can become something that an individual craves in the long run.
In the U.S., anxiety, and stress have become common issues, so it is no coincidence that the number of prescriptions for Valium has skyrocketed. Valium and other BZDs are prescribed to ease seizures, muscle spasms, and anxiety. Regardless of this scope of restorative advantages, Valium has a high risk for dependence and addiction. Clinical direction recommends that the drug be only for short periods, because tolerance manifests in many people with longer-term use. Tolerance forces these people to increase their dose.
Decreasing or abruptly discontinuing treatment comes with potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Side effects of withdrawing include a return or “rebound” of anxiety and insomnia, uncomfortable mental and physical states, psychosis, and seizures.
Alongside Xanax and Ativan, Valium is among the BZDs with the most risk for misuse and reliance. Their abuse potential happens with the immediate feeling of bliss, relief from feeling bad (dysphoria), and mental well-being.
Signs and Symptoms of Valium Addiction
It’s essential to learn how to detect the signs and symptoms of a Valium habit. Even at helpful doses, the side effects of Valium can affect memory and motor functioning. It can also put older individuals in danger of over-sedation and falls. Young people frequently pair Valium alongside liquor, narcotics, and other substances to amplify the euphoria, putting them in danger of overdose and death.
Identifying Valium addiction early can help lower the risk of injury and death. Signs and symptoms of Valium misuse may include:
- Blurred vision
- Slurred speech
- Lack of coordination
- Difficulty breathing
An individual abusing Valium is often the last to admit that there is a problem. There are early phases that signal the onset of abuse. Early indications of Valium misuse may include:
- Requiring a steady supply of Valium
- Unusual behavior
- Difficulty in functioning without the drug
- Risky conduct, such as operating heavy machinery under the influence of the drug
Valium withdrawal symptoms can be terrifying and life-threatening. These symptoms can make it hard to function. Signs and side effects of Valium withdrawal can include:
- Blurred vision
- Obsessive rumination
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
- Return of the original anxiety (recurrence)
- Worsening of the original anxiety symptoms (rebound)
More severe symptoms of Valium withdrawal may include:
- Increased heartbeat (tachycardia)
- Muscle tension
- Agitation and severe restlessness
- Muscle and joint pain
- Grand mal seizures
Acute benzodiazepine withdrawal is one of the various health risks associated with Valium misuse. A missed dose can lead to other withdrawal symptoms, including excessive perspiration, psychosis and hallucinations, stomach cramps, digestive problems, depression, and vision impairment.
These withdrawal symptoms make detoxification and treatment for Valium dependence necessary since individuals who attempt to detox by themselves can put their lives in danger. Fortunately, individuals who battle with Valium misuse are not alone. There is an exit plan.
Granite Recovery Centers
Granite Recovery Centers offers a supportive environment where individuals battling Valium dependence can get help. We have been in the business for more than 10 years, changing people’s lives and giving hope. These are services that we offer:
- Exclusive residential addiction centers in New Hampshire
- Mental health program
- Intensive outpatient program
- Structured sober living programs
- Alumni program
Treatment for Valium Addiction
Since Valium is an addictive drug, individuals often require medical detox. During this part of the recovery process, medical professionals will monitor the individual and provide them with medication if necessary. The well-being of the individual is the top priority. Since uncomfortable withdrawal side effects can cause a backslide, detox is the best route. In those who started taking Valium to treat anxiety, detox from the drug is the first step in working toward other therapies to treat their mental health condition. Granite Recovery Centers offers excellent detox programs that are designed to help people get clean in a safe manner. Granite Recovery Centers provides medical detoxification for people who do not need immediate medical intervention, are not a danger to themselves, and are capable of self-evacuation in the event of an emergency.
Following detox, ongoing treatment for substance abuse is necessary to help the patient avoid relapse. The individuals who have been misusing Valium to cope with pressure have the chance to talk about their issues with specialists and other people who are dependent on Valium. They can work through their issues and learn new coping skills. The objective of addiction treatment programs is to help individuals who have addictions accomplish long-lasting sobriety as they figure out how to get by without using drugs.
Finding Addiction Treatment That Works for You
Of course, even among those battling the same addiction issues, choosing the right course of treatment depends on various factors. Fortunately, there are many options available, and finding one that is suitable for your situation will not be a problem.
For those with serious drug dependence and/or co-occurring issues that require continued care and evaluation, residential treatment is often the best option. These programs comprise 30 to 60 days of treatment that incorporates group therapy and one-on-one counseling to help individuals dependent on Valium realize the root causes of their addiction and learn other ways of coping. By working with others dealing with Valium addiction, those in treatment can also build healthy relationships and see that they are not alone in their problems.
Types of Therapy
Motivational enhancement therapy (MET), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and contingency management treatment have shown effectiveness in helping with Valium addiction. MET can help an individual overcome any ambivalence about engaging in treatment, and CBT can help people identify and correct problematic behaviors that have contributed to their addiction. Contingency management works by rewarding people for their continued commitment to sobriety.
Individuals in treatment for Valium dependence will attend complementary 12-step meetings. By working the 12 steps, individuals can focus on their sobriety while striving to right any wrongs that their addiction has caused. Most treatment facilities also incorporate family therapy or family days to help mend bridges to reconciliation and healing because of an individual’s addiction history.
Outpatient therapy is an option for individuals who have no major clinical issues, are motivated enough to follow through on treatment independently, and have strong support at home and in their community. Outpatient treatment follows a comparable plan as inpatient treatment, with participation for a few hours per week during the day or in the evening.
It’s important to remember that addiction is a lifelong issue. Even after going through rehab, relapse is a common occurrence. Because of this, most treatment facilities, including Granite Recovery Centers, provide aftercare programs to build on the progress made during the initial treatment period. People who were using Valium as recommended due to panic attacks or anxiety may particularly benefit from ongoing stress management techniques and other helpful strategies that can be developed through an aftercare program.
There are numerous aftercare interventions offered at Granite Recovery Centers, and they are all distinct from each other. Many people choose to continue attending individual, face-to-face counseling with a therapist, while some choose to attend support groups and others enlist in formal outpatient therapies.
At Granite Recovery Centers, we also oversee Sober-living homes for those who need extra support while reintegrating back into their daily routines. Sober living focuses on building independence in a moderately structured environment that helps insulate residents from the temptations to use their drug of choice.
Our Alumni Program at Granite Recovery Centers is another useful aftercare offering that we make available to those who stay committed to sobriety. Alumni events and outings are held throughout the year to help individuals maintain healthy friendships and find support when they need it.
Get Help Today
Although an addiction to Valium can be difficult to overcome, you don’t have to go it alone. As you can see, help is readily available, and finding a program that fits your needs is easy. If you or someone you love is ready to overcome an addiction to Valium or another substance, contact the team at Granite Recovery Centers for help today. A life free from addiction is possible, and we want to help you reach your recovery goals.