Ativan is a prescription medication that is commonly used to treat anxiety disorders, seizures, and insomnia. It is a benzodiazepine drug that works by slowing down the central nervous system to produce a calming effect. However, like all medications, there are side effects of Ativan that patients need to be aware of before starting treatment.
Northpoint Washington is a high-end addiction treatment center located in Washington that offers quality care, a close-knit community, a safe environment, and amazing care in a growing market. Call us today at 425.437.3298 to learn more about Ativan addiction treatment in Edmonds and the side effects of Ativan and Ativan misuse.
What Is Ativan?
Ativan, generically known as lorazepam, is a prescription medication belonging to the benzodiazepine class of drugs. It is primarily used for the management of anxiety disorders and acute stress reactions and as a short-term treatment for insomnia. Ativan enhances the activity of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter in the brain that inhibits the central nervous system. This leads to a calming and sedative impact on the patient, helping to alleviate anxiety and promote relaxation. Due to its potential for dependence and withdrawal symptoms, Ativan is typically prescribed for short-term use, and patients should adhere to their healthcare professional’s guidance when using this medication.
Ativan misuse is a growing concern, as individuals may use the medication without a prescription or consume it in ways that deviate from prescribed guidelines. This can lead to an increased risk of adverse effects, including dependence, addiction, and potentially life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. Misuse of Ativan often occurs when individuals seek its sedative and anxiolytic properties for recreational purposes or self-medication, which can exacerbate existing mental health issues or result in dangerous drug interactions. Additionally, mixing Ativan with other substances, such as alcohol or opioids, can intensify its sedative effects and heighten the risk of overdose or respiratory depression.
Side Effects of Ativan
The side effects of Ativan can vary depending on the patient’s age, medical history, and dosage. Some common side effects of Ativan include:
- Drowsiness – Ativan can cause drowsiness, which can affect the patient’s ability to operate machinery or perform tasks that require alertness. Patients are advised not to drive or operate heavy machinery until they know how Ativan affects them.
- Dizziness – Ativan can cause dizziness, which can increase the risk of falls and accidents. Patients should avoid activities that require balance or coordination until they know how Ativan affects them.
- Headache – Ativan can cause headaches, which can be mild or severe. Patients should drink plenty of water and rest if they experience a headache.
- Nausea – Ativan can cause nausea and vomiting, which can be alleviated by taking the medication with food.
- Blurred vision – Ativan can cause blurred vision, which can affect the patient’s ability to see clearly.
- Confusion – Ativan can cause confusion, especially in elderly patients. Patients should inform their doctor if they experience confusion or memory problems while taking Ativan.
- Mood changes – Ativan can cause mood changes, such as depression or euphoria. Patients should inform their doctor if they experience any changes in their mood while taking Ativan.
- Withdrawal symptoms – Ativan withdrawal symptoms can be severe and include seizures, tremors, and hallucinations. Patients should not stop taking Ativan abruptly and should consult their doctor before discontinuing the medication.
- Respiratory depression – Ativan can cause respiratory depression, especially in patients with respiratory problems. Patients should inform their doctor if they experience difficulty breathing while taking Ativan.
If you are experiencing one or more of these side effects, contact a medical professional or an addiction treatment center like Northpoint Washington. In case of an emergency, dial 911.
Get Ativan Misuse Treatment at Northpoint Washington
Northpoint Washington is an inpatient addiction treatment center that specializes in drug, alcohol, and mental health treatment. We provide a range of programs and services, including, but not limited to:
- Drug rehab
- Dual diagnosis
- Medicated detox
- Holistic treatment
- One-on-one counseling
- Group therapy
- Strength-based therapy
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy