Ativan For Opiate Withdrawal – Is This the Answer of Your Search?
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If you are thinking to use Ativan for opiate withdrawal, you should think again. Studies back its use in the management of alcohol withdrawal. However, the same may not apply when you are having problems with opiate comedown.
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A Short Note On Ativan
Ativan, which contains Lorazepam, is a Benzo-like medication. It works by increasing the activity of a brain chemical. They call it GABA. As a result, it induces sleep and has a calming on the brain. Moreover, this effect may extend to control the seizures.
Doctors prescribe it to treat anxiety. In addition, some of them may also use it if you have problems with sleeping.
What Are The Risks Of Using Ativan For Opiate Withdrawal?
Anyone who has been through the withdrawal from an opiate knows the pain of it. Typically, they have anxiety, insomnia, and muscle aches.
Coincidently, Ativan treats the similar conditions. For this reason, some patients may think it could make them sleep during an opiate withdrawal. Furthermore, the anxiety-relieving effects may also lure them to try it.
However, you should understand one thing. It is that the approved uses of Ativan are for those who have no addiction problem. Naturally, anyone with an addiction problem is not the target consumer.
Using Ativan for opiate withdrawal may result in a great many health problems. Addiction being the most feared side effect of an inappropriate Ativan use. In fact, the risk is very much like many other medications of Benzo class. Studies suggest an opiate addict is naturally at a greater risk almost every time.
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Why You Should Not Use Ativan For Opiate Withdrawal?
There are many other reasons that prohibit using Ativan for opiate withdrawal. This is on top of the increased risk of an addiction.
Lorazepam (found in Ativan) and opiates have many well-known interactions. As a result, they can be very harmful to your health. During a withdrawal, a small fraction of the opiate is still present in the blood. In some case, this can be enough to cause dangerous drug interactions.
They include excessive sedation, reduced respiration, and others. If you have had a long history of abuse, coma and death may result.
Hence, using Ativan for opiate withdrawal is not justifiable in any case. Indeed, no benefit, if any, is greater than life itself.
What is The Standard Treatment For Opiate Withdrawal?
The standard treatment for opiate withdrawal consists of the following medications. You should take one or more of them in addition to other supportive treatments.
- Methadone for opiate detox and as a maintenance therapy. Some patients with severe addiction may need this therapy for an indefinite time.
- Buprenorphine (Subutex) for the same purpose as Methadone.
- Clonidine to control anxiety, agitation, and muscle aches.
This is according to the information available on US National Library of Medicine, MedlinePlus.
What You Should Know
Opiate addiction is a very serious brain disease. The effects extend to the physiological systems too. Therefore, they say it causes a mental dependence. In a similar manner, withdrawal from them is quite bad. In fact, they’re more dangerous and unbearable than that from other drugs or prescription medications.
Hence, you should always follow the standard withdrawal treatments only. This way, you can cut down the risk of serious complications by a huge margin. If you have any query, you should not hold back. Instead, consult them right away.
The manufacturers of Ativan do not recommend such use. This is in line with the doctor’s instructions. Therefore, you may feel the strong need to use it in such conditions. As a result, you will have to bear the responsibility for any bad actions to your health or even death.
What You Can Do
- Consult your doctor: You should always talk to your doctor before taking any powerful medication. In fact, it is indispensable when you have an addiction. Often, they use a medication on their own just to add more woes to the ailing health. Therefore, exercise extreme precautions before taking any medication. This also applies to many supplements. They may have big claims and other so-called natural remedies.
- Ask them if other medications that have an approved use in such conditions could be your option. For example, antidepressant medication Amitriptyline (Elavil) has shown promising results. It has helped in relieving withdrawal-associated insomnia.
- Consider using over-the-counter medications to ease the symptoms. For example, Tylenol or Advil to treat pain. Benadryl, an anti-allergic medication, may be helpful in treating nausea. In addition, it may also help with sleeping by inducing drowsiness.
Want To Know More?
Want to know more about the risks of using Ativan for opiate withdrawal or opiate addiction? Talk to the experts. They can provide an accurate information on a variety of addiction-related topics. Their knowledge and experience are invaluable to your journey to sobriety. In fact, with their guidance, you can expect a swift and complete recovery.
Need a professional help to fight an addiction? Get the best rehabs page here.
- Lonergan E, Luxenberg J, Areosa Sastre A. Benzodiazepines for delirium. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009. https://www.cochranelibrary.com/cdsr/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD006379.pub3/full
- McDonald CF, Thomson SA, Scott NC, Scott W, Grant IW, Crompton GK. Benzodiazepine-opiate antagonism–a problem in intensive-care therapy. Intensive Care Med. 1986;12(1):39-42. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2872242
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