Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Klonopin Addiction

Using alcohol or drugs as a crutch to avoid painful feelings can lead to addiction.

Dora (not her real name) was 25 when her husband and child were killed in an automobile accident. Naturally, she was overwhelmed with sadness, despair, fear, and loneliness. Her doctor prescribed klonopin to help Dora cope with her anxious feelings and to help her sleep. She also started drinking to numb the painful feelings as they surfaced.


No matter how far we try to push grief away, it is still there. It’s like trying to hold a beach ball under the water. At some point your arms are going to get pretty tired and the ball is going to shoot to the surface.


After several months, with the help of counseling, Dora realized that the only way she could begin the healing process was to move through grieving. This was being thwarted by the use of benzos and alcohol.


She found she couldn’t stop taking the klonopin without severe withdrawal symptoms. Even cutting back in small increments a few days at a time produced bizarre side effects.


The Accelerated Benzo Detox at The Coleman Institute can make this process tolerable and safe. By using low dose flumazenil, we begin the process of gently restoring homeostasis in the brain, allowing our natural relaxation chemicals to return. How soon the GABA receptors in the brain are completely restored depends on the quantity of medications and the length of time a person has been using benzodiazepines, as well as other pre-existing medical conditions.

If your arms are tired from holding that beach ball under water, the staff at The Coleman Institute would welcome the opportunity to be part of your Healing Team. Give us a call.


Joan Shepherd, FNP

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