Sedative recovery programs include both outpatient and residential facilities that help individuals deal with addictions to certain drugs. In many cases, sedative abuse involves using prescription drugs for non-medical purposes; such drugs may include benzodiazepines like Valium or Xanax, barbiturates like phenobarbital, and anti-anxiety medications like buspirone.1 Sedatives of various types are widely prescribed to treat anxiety or insomnia and also used in various medical applications, such as surgery.
How Are Sedatives Abused?
Statistics compiled from 2002 through 2011 indicate that sedatives may not be abused as often as prescription pain relievers or stimulants; however, the same study indicated that those who abuse prescriptions drugs are likely to get the medications from friends or family members.2 In most cases, that friend or family member obtained the drugs on a valid prescription from a single physician. Whether prescription drugs are being shared willingly or stolen by the abuser, it is easy for someone addicted to sedatives to gain easy access to the drugs. Regular access to a drug can make it more difficult for an addict to quit using it, increasing the importance of a sedative treatment program.
Some people seem to have adopted a casual approach to sedatives. This is especially true of well-known brands like Valium, as an informal approach to sharing prescriptions are common. In some cases, this might create the impression that occasional non-prescribed use of sedatives is not only normal but also appropriate in some situations. This view supports abuse of these drugs.
Signs of Sedative Addiction
Using any type of prescription drug without the recommendation of a doctor is dangerous. In addition to having a number of possible side effects, sedative drugs can be addictive. What starts as a one-time use can become an occasional habit; an occasional habit can quickly become an addiction. Some signs that you or someone you love may be addicted to sedatives include:3
- Constant sleepiness or drowsiness.
- Slurred speech.
- Decreased concentration and memory.
- Low blood pressure and heart rate.
- Uncharacteristic risk-taking behavior.
- Loss of inhibitions.
- Drug-seeking behavior.
If you are using sedatives of any type in a non-medical way, call us today for more information about local treatment resources. Our addiction recovery helpline is available 24 hours a day at 1-888-319-2606 Who Answers? .
Tips for Selecting a Sedative Recovery Facility
“It is important to locate a center that will meet your individual needs to best facilitate your recovery.”
Although outpatient options for detox and recovery are available, health care providers are more likely to suggest a residential program for individuals who are struggling with addiction. Since sedatives may be readily available in the home or through friends, cutting temporary ties with the world and seeking specialty care in a treatment center can increase your chance of successful recovery. Sedative treatment programs may offer stays of a few weeks to a few months. It is important to locate a center that will meet your individual needs to best facilitate your recovery.
Here are some tips to help you find the right residential rehab facility:
- Speak to your doctor or substance abuse counselor as soon as possible if you believe you are abusing sedatives or have relapsed after previous treatment. You can speak to your primary care physician if you don’t know where to find treatment, but any medical doctor should be able to refer you to treatment facilities or another physician who specializes in chemical dependencies.
- Call a helpline that can offer information about local treatment facilities. Our counselors are available at all times to discuss your sedative addiction and help you find information regarding treatment centers. Call today at 1-888-319-2606 Who Answers? .
- Attend a local Narcotics Anonymous meeting and ask about additional treatment options. These groups often provide information about local treatment facilities, including residential programs, at their meetings.
- Talk to your counselor or the admissions staff at a local facility about your needs. Being honest about your situation helps clinical and medical staff members to develop the most successful treatment plan. Providing accurate information about yourself and your drug use can also help a counselor recommend the right addiction recovery program for you.
- Be open to new ideas and situations. Studies have shown that participation in group therapy is one of the most successful ways to remain sober after recovery.
What to Expect in a Recovery Facility
“Every activity within a sedative recovery facility is meant to help patients break their drug habits and maintain sobriety after rehab.”
Some people avoid rehab due to fear of the unknown, but in most cases, rehabilitation is not a mysterious process. Rehab programs may provide medical treatment for withdrawal symptoms, medication to assist with recovery, individual and group counseling sessions, and education about daily living skills from professional staff members, such as dieticians and nurses. Every activity within a sedative recovery facility is meant to help patients break their drug habits and maintain sobriety after rehab.4 Call us today at 1-888-319-2606 Who Answers? for more information about available facilities.
. Julien, R.M., et al. (2011). Sedative Hypnotics and Anxiolytic Medications. A Primer of Drug Action. A Primer of Drug Use: A Comprehensive Guide to the Actions, Uses, and Side Effects of Psychoactive Drugs. Twelfth Edition. New York, NY: Worth Publishing, 236-270.
. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Results from the 2011 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Summary of National Findings, NSDUH Series H-44 HHS Publication No. (SMA) 12-4713. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2012. Retrieved from http://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/Revised2k11NSDUHSummNatFindings/Revised2k11NSDUHSummNatFindings/NSDUHresults2011.htm.
. Bisaga, A. (2008). Benzodiazepines and Other Sedatives and Hypnotics. In Galanter, M., and Kleber, H.D., Editors. The American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Substance Abuse Treatment. Fourth Edition. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Publishing, Inc., 215-235.
. Weiss, R.D., et al. (2008). Inpatient Treatment. In Galanter and Kleber [previously cited], 445-458.
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