Benzodiazepine Dependence - Misuse and Addiction

Misuse and Addiction

See also: Benzodiazepine drug misuse

Benzodiazepines are one of the largest classes of abused drugs; they are classed as schedule IV controlled drugs because of their recognized medical uses. Across the world the most frequently diverted and abused benzodiazepines include temazepam, diazepam, nimetazepam, nitrazepam, triazolam, flunitrazepam, midazolam, and in the United States alprazolam, clonazepam and lorazepam.

Benzodiazepines can cause serious addiction problems. A survey in Senegal of doctors found that many doctors feel that their training and knowledge of benzodiazepines is, in general, poor; a study in Dakar found that almost one-fifth of doctors ignored prescribing guidelines regarding short-term use of benzodiazepines, and almost three-quarters of doctors regarded their training and knowledge of benzodiazepines to be inadequate. More training regarding benzodiazepines has been recommended for doctors. Due to the serious concerns of addiction, national governments were recommended to urgently seek to raise knowledge via training about the addictive nature of benzodiazepines and appropriate prescribing of benzodiazepines.

A six-year study on 51 Vietnam veterans who were drug abusers of either mainly stimulants (11 people), mainly opiates (26 people), or mainly benzodiazepines (14 people) was carried out to assess psychiatric symptoms related to the specific drugs of abuse. After six years, opiate abusers had little change in psychiatric symptomatology; five of the stimulant users had developed psychosis, and eight of the benzodiazepine users had developed depression. Therefore, long-term benzodiazepine abuse and dependence seems to carry a negative effect on mental health, with a significant risk of causing depression. Benzodiazepines are also sometimes abused intra-nasally.

In the elderly, alcohol and benzodiazepines are the most commonly abused substances, and the elderly population is more susceptible to benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome and delirium than are younger patients.

Read more about this topic:  Benzodiazepine Dependence

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Famous quotes containing the words misuse and, addiction and/or misuse:

    Physical pleasure is a sensual experience no different from pure seeing or the pure sensation with which a fine fruit fills the tongue; it is a great unending experience, which is given us, a knowing of the world, the fullness and the glory of all knowing. And not our acceptance of it is bad; the bad thing is that most people misuse and squander this experience and apply it as a stimulant at the tired spots of their lives and as distraction instead of a rallying toward exalted moments.
    Rainer Maria Rilke (1875–1926)

    All sin tends to be addictive, and the terminal point of addiction is what is called damnation.
    —W.H. (Wystan Hugh)

    Physical pleasure is a sensual experience no different from pure seeing or the pure sensation with which a fine fruit fills the tongue; it is a great unending experience, which is given us, a knowing of the world, the fullness and the glory of all knowing. And not our acceptance of it is bad; the bad thing is that most people misuse and squander this experience and apply it as a stimulant at the tired spots of their lives and as distraction instead of a rallying toward exalted moments.
    Rainer Maria Rilke (1875–1926)