Tranquilizer Addiction & Treatment
Tranquilizers, also known as depressants, are the most prescribed psychotherapeutic drugs in the United States today. They are also considered to be one of the most addictive substances available. With over 60 million Americans prescribed tranquilizers each year for anxiety and sleep disorders, addiction rates are soaring.
Developed to ease anxiety and aid with sleep issues, tranquilizers slow down the central nervous system, producing a calming and “tranquil effect” on the user. Users quickly develop a tolerance to tranquilizers, so long-term use requires more drugs to produce the same initial effect. This is the primary reason why addiction can occur easily and rapidly. But users can also experience relief from secondary ailments like muscle and joint pain, making stopping the drug even more difficult.
There are two classes of tranquilizers:
Major — “Antipsychotics” that are used to treat mental illness where psychosis is often present, lacking euphoric effects if abused, they have little risk of becoming addictive (Haldol, Navane, Thorazine, Mellaril)
Minor — used to treat anxiety and sleep disorders, produce euphoric effects when taken inappropriately, and are highly addictive.
There are two classes of minor tranquilizers:
Benzodiazepines – Reduce anxiety without sedation (Xanax, Ativan, Valium, and Librium).
Barbiturates – often referred to as tranquilizers, but have been largely replaced with Benzodiazepines which are less addictive and deadly (Amytal, Nembutal and Seconal)
Even with a prescription, tranquilizers are not recommended for long-term use. Mild withdrawal symptoms can be felt when quitting just after a few weeks of use. Dependency on tranquilizers are rapid, and signs of an addiction can be a need to use the drug despite negative effects on relationships and work, as well as a compulsion to acquire the drug over all other needs.
Recreational use of tranquilizers is widespread and extremely dangerous. When abused, they can produce feelings of euphoria, lightheadedness, drowsiness and confusion. Often used by addicts to come “down” off of stimulants, or as part of a drug cocktail that can include heroin or alcohol, the combinations can be deadly. Tranquilizers can also have a “paradoxical” effect on users, making them agitated and anxious. Long-term users can become extremely depressed or aggressive.
If you or someone you love is suffering from tranquilizer addiction please call the Pasadena Recovery Center at (866) 663-3030. We’re available to talk with you twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. We promise confidentiality and professionalism. Our comprehensive treatment program will address each client’s issues on an integrated basis, understanding that addiction often has underlying emotional and behavioral issues that need to be resolved.
At Pasadena Recovery Center, our dedicated staff understands the disease of addiction and we’re proud to offer lifesaving treatment at an affordable cost. Our goal is to reintroduce sober individuals into society with the skills necessary to lead meaningful, productive lives, through a compassionate and comprehensive treatment program. There is hope and we’re here to help, so please take the first step towards a better life by contacting us today.