WHAT ARE BENZOS?
Benzos are a synthetic compounds called benzodiazepines. Xanax, the most widely used psychiatric drug in the the USA, is a benzodiazepine. Benzos are highly addictive. Patients also develop tolerance to these drugs, requiring higher and higher dosages.
WHEN ARE BENZOS USED?
Benzos are prescribed for symptoms of anxiety and panic disorder.
HOW DO BENZOS WORK?
The chemicals in benzos move from the blood stream into the brain, crossing the blood-brain barrier that otherwise protects brain cells from toxins. The act on the central nervous system by attaching itself to GABA brain receptors.
WHAT IS GABA?
GABA is a natural neurotransmitter that plays a role in calming the body. It helps us relax when we are anxious and under stress.
WHY ARE THERE SIDE EFFECTS WHEN I STOP TAKING A BENZO DRUG?
When you take a benzo, the body essentially stops its own GABA production. It then depends on the drug to feel calm and has very limited ability to do so on its own. When you stop taking a benzo (or develop tolerance to the drug), you are likely to feel severe anxiety as well as any of the other benzo side effects.
ARE THERE ANY BENZO WARNINGS?
• A benzo should not be used by pregnant women as it can cause withdrawal symptoms that would be life threatening to the infant.
• Do not combine benzos with alcohol
or narcotic pain killers. Doing so can cause a person to go to sleep and then stop breathing, leading to death.
• Do not mix benzos.
• Do not drive when taking a benzo. It reduces your reaction time.
• Benzos should not be used by anyone over 65 years old. Older persons may have reduced metabolism, which will increase side effects.
• Do not eat grapefruit products when you take benzos. Constituents in grapefruit can affect liver enzymes that break down benzos. The amount of benzos in your blood may then increase and worsen side effects such as drowsiness, dizziness and confusion.
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DRUG WITHDRAWAL RESEARCH FOUNDATION is a nonprofit organization that researches and publishes information about effective methods to withdraw from medication and drugs. Statements, information and products mentioned are for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. The information has not been evaluated by the US Food and Drug Administration. Consult a health-care professional before using any information provided. The foundation does not advocate or recommend to discontinue any medication. The foundation recommends that any program to taper off a medication should be supervised by a qualified medical doctor. Copyright © 2013 by DRUG WITHDRAWAL RESEARCH FOUNDATION, 334 West 57th Street #343, New York, NY 10019. Web: www.WithdrawalResearch.org. Email: info@WithdrawalResearch.org.