Addressing Benzo Abuse at Banyan

Benzodiazepines, also known as benzos, are a type of psychoactive drug that is used to treat high levels of anxiety, panic attacks, and sleeping disorders and are also used to prevent seizures. Some common benzodiazepines include Xanax, Ativan, and Valium. These drugs work by depressing the central nervous system to create a relaxing sensation for the user. Typically, doctors will prescribe these medications for short-term use, but benzodiazepines have the potential for addiction if misused. If you or a loved one is dependent on benzos, Banyan Chicago's benzodiazepine treatment in Illinois can help.

Benzo Addiction Symptoms

Benzodiazepines belong to the drug class known as sedatives. Due to their calming effects, benzos are highly addictive, and a person who abuses them by taking them in higher doses than prescribed or mixing them with other drugs or alcohol is likely to become addicted.

Normally, people who abuse benzos exhibit a number of physical and behavioral symptoms. Common signs and symptoms of benzodiazepine abuse include:

  • Sedation
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Blurred vision
  • Drowsiness
  • Mood swings
  • Poor judgment or thinking
  • Withdrawal from loved ones
  • Decreased performance at school, work, or home
  • Decreased interest in normal activities
  • Doctor shopping (going to different doctors for more prescriptions)
  • Asking friends, family, colleagues, and/or classmates for their prescription drugs
  • Wanting to cut back on the volume of abuse but not being able to do so
  • Risk-taking behaviors, such as driving after abusing benzodiazepines
  • Using benzodiazepines with alcohol or other drugs

If anyone you know displays any of these benzodiazepine addiction signs, they may require the help of our benzo rehab center in Chicago. Our inpatient and outpatient treatment services at Banyan Treatment Centers help them achieve recovery and prepare them to maintain a sober lifestyle after rehab.

Why Are Benzodiazepines Addictive?

This addictiveness of benzos can primarily be attributed to its drastic impact on neurotransmitters in the brain, along with its ability to produce temporary but powerfully calming symptoms. First, benzodiazepines increase the inhibitory effects of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurotransmitter pathway in the brain. Lowering neuronal excitability, which has a calming effect, is what GABA is responsible for. By increasing GABA activity, benzos have a sedative and anxiolytic effect.

However, regular benzodiazepine use can change the GABA balance in the brain, leading to tolerance and dependency. People might therefore require higher quantities of the drug to achieve the same effects, increasing the likelihood of addiction.

Second, some people may find the euphoria and relaxation that benzodiazepines bring to be pleasant and reinforcing. Because people may try to mimic the pleasurable effects of benzodiazepine use, this positive reinforcement can result in psychological dependence on the substance. Additionally, people looking for fast relief from anxiety or discomfort may find benzodiazepines to be tempting due to their quick onset of action and the short-term respite they offer.

Even when users are aware of the negative effects of their addiction, they may nevertheless use benzodiazepines out of fear of going through these unpleasant side effects or withdrawal symptoms. This makes seeking out professional benzo treatment a crucial step in the recovery process.

How to Treat a Benzodiazepine Addiction

Although benzodiazepines may seem safer to take because they’re prescribed by a doctor, benzo recreational use can be damaging to a person’s overall health. Prescription drug abuse of any kind is a growing concern in this country as more and more people are becoming physically dependent on these drugs.

Long-term abuse of benzos can lead to serious problems such as cognitive impairment, increased risk of accidents, and a greater chance of hip fractures in those older than 65.1 An addiction to benzos will also lead to chemical brain changes that make it hard for a person to stop.

If they do try to quit on their own, they will likely experience benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms that can be too overwhelming and lead to relapse. These addictions can be devastating to a person’s overall well-being as well as those closest to them, but benzodiazepine rehab services are available to help these individuals overcome their substance abuse problems.

Benzodiazepine addiction treatment can take time, and detox is only the first step. While this process helps rid the body of these drugs, many addicted individuals will still feel intense drug cravings and struggle to remain sober.

In order to help these patients find long-term sobriety, our inpatient or partial hospitalization program in Chicago will further aid in their recovery efforts. Patients in these programs can expect to participate in unique therapy programs that will help them get to the root of the addiction as well as learn how to manage future drug cravings as they transition back to their normal routines outside of treatment.

Do not attempt to detox or quit benzos on your own. Due to the risk of long-term abuse as well as the difficulty in quitting on their own, the help of a benzo addiction treatment center is recommended.

Our Benzo Addiction Treatment in Chicago

Benzodiazepine treatment centers like our Chicago drug rehab are designed to produce in-depth addiction treatment plans that take all of the patient’s needs into consideration. We offer a comprehensive approach to benzo addiction recovery to ensure that the individual is set up for a successful recovery when they aren’t in rehab.

Each patient’s addiction is unique, so before treatment begins, we conduct a full clinical assessment. This thorough evaluation ensures that the patient’s treatment plan will address all of their needs and help them meet their recovery goals.

Some of the benzodiazepine addiction treatment methods and programming we offer include:

  • Individual therapy sessions
  • Group therapy programs
  • Addiction education
  • Family support groups
  • Relapse prevention techniques
  • And more

Along with utilizing a variety of treatment methods to aid our patients, our benzo addiction treatment program in Chicago helps people overcome this disease once and for all by treating the underlying mental health problems at play. Many people begin taking benzodiazepines for anxiety, but addiction occurs when they stop taking their medication as prescribed.

They may come to rely on benzos to cope with their anxiety, and if this anxiety is left untreated, they will likely relapse. To avoid this unhealthy cycle, the patient will undergo anxiety and addiction treatment at our facility. Once they have come to confidently manage both problems, they can successfully transition back into their community.

How to Get Benzo Help for Addiction

If you or your loved one needs benzodiazepine treatment, our drug rehab in Naperville, IL can help. Contact Banyan Treatment Centers Chicago today to learn more about our benzodiazepine rehab program and the different levels of care we provide. It’s not too late to start over and take control over your addiction.


  1. AAFP - Risks Associated With Long-Term Benzodiazepine Use

Related Reading:

Can Benzodiazepines Cause Hallucinations?

Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Psychosis: Symptoms & Timeline

How Long Benzos Stay In Your System

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At Banyan Chicago our goal is to make sure that anyone who needs treatment from drug and alcohol addiction are able to get the help needed to assist them on the road to recovery. If you don't have insurance contact us to inquire about alternate methods regarding treatment for yourself or a loved one.

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