Ativan is an anti-anxiety medication that has had a hand in many celebrity deaths. It’s difficult to say how many others may have been affected because of this dangerous drug. When mixed with alcohol, or other drugs, Ativan can be deadly. This has been proven time and time again. If you’re using Ativan, knowing the dangers of it is so important. Benzodiazepines can be deadly when they are being misused.
Celebrity Deaths Due to Ativan and Other Benzos
The world has lost some of the greatest talents and creative minds to drug overdoses and addictions. At the heart of many of these lie benzodiazepines. Among them, Ativan seems to be one of the most common. Lorazepam is a very dangerous drug. It becomes even more dangerous with long-term use, or when it is mixed with other drugs or alcohol. Celebrities that have lost their lives because of benzodiazepines include:
- Amy Winehouse
- Brittany Murphy
- Adam Goldstein
- Michael Jackson
- Heath Ledger
- Anna Nicole Smith
- Whitney Houston
- Mike Starr
Most recently, the beloved Chris Cornell joined the others in this list. It’s a list that seems to be growing.
Why Ativan Use?
The question is, why? What is it about Ativan and even other benzos that make it so popular among celebrities? What are the dangers associated with taking this drug long-term? Ativan users should be forewarned. Anyone is at risk for serious issues when taking Lorazepam. This drug is highly potent, and patients are often put on it for long periods of time. Ativan addictions are becoming more and more commonplace. It can help to learn more about what Lorazepam is and what makes it so dangerous.
What is Ativan (Lorazepam)?
Ativan (Lorazepam) is a member of the benzodiazepine classification of drugs. It is a drug that is frequently used to treat anxiety. It works by acting on the brain and central nervous system to produce a calming effect on the body. In some cases, Lorazepam is used to treat other conditions as well. It can be used to treat insomnia. It has also been used as a light anesthetic. For some, Ativan is prescribed on an as-needed basis. For others, their anxiety is deemed to be so severe that they take it regularly. Many people even take high doses of Lorazepam three times a day.
What is the Usual Ativan Dosage?
Ativan can be given in the form of a pill, an injection, or through an IV. When it is given for its sedative effects, a small dosage is all that is needed for most people. Generally .05 mg is all that is required. For those who use Ativan for their anxiety, 2 to 3 mg may be their initial dose. They may take it two to three times per day. As time goes on, less Ativan may be required once anxiety is under control. 1 to 2 mg, two or three times a day may be prescribed.
What are the Different Ativan Uses?
There are many reasons why doctors frequently prescribe Ativan. Lorazepam has been shown to be very effective in a short period of time. It is useful in helping to treat:
- Various types of anxiety disorders
- Panic disorders
- Chronic insomnia
- Alcohol withdrawal syndrome
- Seizure disorders
Even though Ativan is effective, is it always the right choice? That’s the question that remains. So many people have lost their lives while Lorazepam was in their systems. Therefore, the answer to this question is that it might not be.
What is the Ativan High Like?
For those who take Lorazepam for legitimate medical reasons, an Ativan high is unlikely. However, when it is abused, it can lead to a euphoric high. One of the ways at Ativan high is achieved is by taking a larger dosage than prescribed. People will often take the drug more frequently than they should as well. Those who abuse Lorazepam may take other measures to increase the intensity of the Ativan high. This can be done by mixing Lorazepam with other drugs, drinking alcohol with it, or crushing the pills. If the pills are crushed, they can be snorted, or they can be mixed with water and injected. The Ativan high usually results in a strong sensation of intoxication. This can include feeling dizzy and drowsy.
The Ativan Half-Life and How Long it Takes for Lorazepam to Leave the Body
The Ativan half-life is between 10 and 20 hours, depending on the dosage of the drug. This means it takes that long for half of the drug to leave the body. Other factors may also play a role in how fast Ativan leaves the body. These can include:
- How long the individual has been using Ativan
- Certain genetic factors
- Whether or not other drugs were being used at the same time
- The individual’s personal metabolic rate
- How often Lorazepam has been used
Once an addiction has formed to Ativan, recovering from it can be very difficult. The Ativan half-life does not dictate how long withdrawal can occur. There are likely to be symptoms of Ativan withdrawal long after the drug has left the body.
Ativan Side Effects You Should be Aware of
Lorazepam is a very powerful benzodiazepine. It has many benefits when it is being used correctly. However it also can lead to a number of side effects as well. Some common Ativan side effects you should be aware of include:
- Developing a rash on your skin
- Experiencing appetite changes
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Losing your balance or problems with coordination
- Blurred vision
- Amnesia or memory loss
- Feeling drowsy or dizzy
- Weakness in your muscles
- Sleep problems, such as insomnia
- Problems with concentration
These Ativan side effects can occur with even the lowest dose of Lorazepam. Side effects may increase in severity with higher doses of this drug.
Ativan Withdrawal Symptoms
Any drug that leads to addiction is going to cause withdrawal when it is stopped. Lorazepam is no exception. Ativan is a potent drug. Even those who are careful to follow their doctor’s prescription can experience Ativan withdrawal symptoms. It can take some time to recover from an Ativan addiction. During that time, Ativan withdrawal symptoms are typical, and they can include:
- Painful headaches
- Tension throughout the body
- Abdominal cramps
- Bouts of vertigo or dizziness
- Experiencing panic attacks
- Short-term memory loss or confusion
- Irritability or anger
- Loss of appetite
- Hallucinations or delusions
Many people who suffer from withdrawal symptoms from Ativan also experience suicidal thoughts. This is just one reason why it’s dangerous to stop this medication on your own. Stopping the use of Lorazepam should always be done under medical supervision.
Ativan vs. Xanax: Which is Better?
There are some differences between Ativan and Xanax. However, there aren’t enough that someone should need to ask which one is preferred. The fact is that both can be dangerous. When it comes to Ativan vs. Xanax, Ativan is prescribed for people ages 12 and older. Xanax is only prescribed for people ages 18 and older. Both of these drugs can lead to deadly drug interactions. They are both benzos, and they can both lead to an addiction. A doctor may have a good reason for choosing Xanax over Ativan. Still, great care should be taken with both.
How Does Lorazepam Use Lead to Addiction?
For those who use Lorazepam regularly, they always run the risk of becoming addicted. Ativan is a drug that causes an increase in serotonin and dopamine levels in the brain. This is particularly true when it is being taken in higher than normal dosages, or when it is otherwise abused. Because of this, the risk of addiction is very high for Lorazepam. The brain becomes used to these high levels of serotonin and dopamine. Normally, these are chemicals the brain produces on its own. With Ativan, eventually, the brain will stop producing these chemicals. This is what leads to the addiction. The brain becomes dependent on Ativan to do this job for it. This is also why you may not feel like yourself, or feel happy without Lorazepam.
Why is Ativan Linked to a High Risk of Suicide?
Ativan use is definitely linked to a high risk of suicide. When someone takes Ativan in high dosage amounts, that person can experience a blackout. A blackout occurs when your brain loses a chunk of time. It basically experiences the inability to create new memories. During blackouts, people often do dangerous things. They may drive while they are intoxicated. They may commit crimes. They may also attempt suicide. This can even happen for those with no prior history of suicidal attempts. As time goes on, symptoms of depression can worsen with prolonged Ativan use. This can also lead to suicidal ideation and behaviors.
Ativan Addiction Statistics and Facts
There are many things you might not know about Lorazepam. For example, did you know that:
- Lorazepam was initially patented in 1963.
- Ativan did not go on sale in the U.S. until 1977.
- It is currently on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines.
- Ativan is regarded as one of the most effective and safe medications in the U.S. healthcare system.
- In the United States, it costs less than $25 for a month’s supply, typically.
- In 2011, there were 28 million prescriptions filled for Ativan during that year.
- That makes it the second most prescribed benzodiazepine medication after Xanax.
Are You Concerned About Your Own Ativan Use? Do You Need Ativan Rehab?
You may be concerned about your own Ativan use after learning this information. If you are, you need to know if you have an addiction or not. One of the best ways to do that is by taking a quiz. This quiz will ask you a series of questions about your drug use. Once you’re finished, you’ll get access to your results immediately. That way, you’ll know what steps you need to take. If you do have an addiction, the best thing you can do is to get Ativan treatment right away. An Ativan rehab program can provide you with the support you need to quit using.
Help for Ativan Addiction is Available for You
You may have known that Ativan was addictive. However, what you didn’t realize was that you were addicted to it. Finding that out now can come as quite a shock to you. The loss of so many celebrity lives has been heartbreaking for America as a whole. These are people who have certainly made their mark on American culture. Because of these losses, we will never be the same. However, there is much to learn from them, and what they suffered through. Ativan is such a dangerous drug. It may be a drug that is prescribed too freely by doctors. It’s possible that there isn’t enough information communicated to patients who begin to take Lorazepam. They need to be informed about the dangers associated with it. They need to know about mixing alcohol with Lorazepam, and what can happen if they do. They also need to know about the danger of taking Ativan for too long. Also, if you are an Ativan addict, you need to know that help is available for you. You’re not alone, and there’s nothing to be ashamed of if you are addicted to Ativan. Find out how you can get the help you need to recover.
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