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Benzos, anti-anxiety drugs such as Klonopin and Xanax, are widely prescribed. However, they are addictive drugs and can be difficult to withdraw if you try to taper them off.
Many people with pain problems who take opioids such as Percocet or OxyContin also have anxiety. The two feed each other biologically. During the opioid crisis, it became clear that people dependent on both opioids and benzos were most at risk. taking benzos with opioids One large study almost quadruples the chance of a fatal overdose. The numbers are also terrifying when benzos are mixed with buprenorphine (a drug used to treat symptoms when coming off opioids). S.Approximately 20-43% of people taking addiction medications are prescribed benzodiazepines to manage insomnia and anxiety. For example, in a study of over 63,000 patients in Massachusetts, a quarter of patients were prescribed at least one prescription benzo while on buprenorphine. That group was three times more likely to have a fatal opioid overdose and twice as likely to die from any cause than the group that didn’t.
This phenomenon is not a big surprise to doctors. They face puzzles. The FDA said the risk of untreated opioid use disorder is greater than the risk of combining drugs such as buprenorphine with benzo, urging people taking benzo not to withhold anti-addiction medications. Advice. Patients can also obtain benzos illegally.
The goal is to help patients taper offAdditional research shows that doctors hope to get their patients off benzos over time, believing they will lose their patients if they push too hard. A Massachusetts study found that a patient who took benzos was 13% less likely to stop taking buprenorphine.
The problem is that benzos like opioids can backfire. more I’m worried. As one doctor put it, “That conversation is really difficult. It’s like saying, ‘I feel like I’m going to leave,’ and no one wants it to come off. And nobody has a program focused on keeping people off benzos. The easiest thing is to keep writing this prescription. “
Some say doctors are fostering yet another addiction. It is true that patients tend to abuse benzos early in their treatment. Told.
Patients tend to focus on the benefits of benzos. “It could be potentially dangerous, but nothing else seems to help me,” she said. Others do not consider the risks of benzos to apply to them. They consider it close to use, but if it’s helping my anxiety attacks, that’s fine.
If that sounds like someone you care about, you’re right to worry. Ideally, the doctor should work with the patient to taper the benzo. “The combination of increased surveillance of patients taking benzodiazepines, limiting benzodiazepine doses, and slow patient-initiated dose reductions as needed, will help us to address this challenging but not uncommon clinical scenario. can be a way of navigating,” the Boston University team wrote. , led by Tae Woo Park, MD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry. Just cutting someone off will likely lead to a street purchase.
When you’re in a relationship with someone who struggles with addiction, it’s easy to try to limit the damage by covering up mistakes, making excuses, or trying to control access to drugs. All of the movements may seem necessary. But in the long run, addicts have to take responsibility for it.
- Make sure your loved ones face the consequences of their actions, no matter how hard they may be.
- Let them handle what they are responsible for.
- Do not feel guilty about your loved one’s drug use, as this is a problem for them to solve.
- Tell them your concern and that their drug use is a serious problem.
- Suggest treatment options.
- Promise to take care of yourself first.