Signs Of Ativan (Lorazepam) Abuse

Ativan, also known by the generic name lorazepam, is a benzodiazepine used medically as a sedative or tranquilizer. Though it can be useful in treating disorders like anxiety, it also has the potential for abuse and addiction.

Who is most likely to abuse Ativan?

People may be prescribed Ativan to treat anxiety disorders, uncomfortable symptoms of chemotherapy, bipolar disorder, nausea and vomiting, sleep disorders, and symptoms of withdrawal from alcohol and other drugs. However, not all these individuals may be at risk of Ativan abuse.

Risk factors for abuse of lorazepam and other benzodiazepines depends on several biological and environmental factors including:

  • Genetic vulnerability to addiction
  • Learned pattern of abuse from family or peers
  • Psychological predispositions like mental health disorders or certain personality types
  • Prior history of substance abuse
What Are the Physical and Psychological Signs of Ativan Abuse?
Even when used as prescribed, Ativan can produce several unpleasant side effects. However, these symptoms may be more likely or pronounced when the drug is taken at higher doses than prescribed.
Physical Signs
Physical signs of Ativan abuse may include:
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Drowsiness
  • Blurred vision
  • Insomnia
  • Impaired motor coordination
  • Confusion
  • Lightheadedness
  • Rashes
  • Impaired concentration
  • Respiratory depression
  • Low blood pressure
Psychological Signs

Psychological signs of Ativan abuse are behavioral changes that tend to characterize most addictions. Some or all of these indicators may appear over time with prolonged and improper Ativan use. These signs include:

  • Increased preoccupation with obtaining the drug
  • Doctor shopping to obtain multiple prescriptions
  • Irritability or mood swings, particularly when Ativan is unavailable
  • Neglect of social or professional responsibilities
  • Increased secretiveness surrounding Ativan use
  • Constant tiredness or drowsiness
  • Inability to discontinue using

What are the symptoms of Ativan addiction and abuse?

Ativan abuse falls under the category of sedative use disorder in The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). To meet diagnostic criteria, a person has to display just two of the 11 criteria over a year-long period. These criteria include:

  • Taking excessive or more frequent doses than prescribed
  • Inability to reduce use or stop using even when the individual feels it is necessary to do so
  • Increased time spent trying to obtain the drug, using, or recovering from its effects
  • Cravings for the substance
  • Inability to perform necessary tasks at work, home, or school as a result of drug abuse
  • Interpersonal problems in relationships as a result of drug use
  • Neglect of hobbies, social or professional events, or other obligations
  • Use of the drug even when it may cause harm, such as driving under the influence
  • Continuing use of the drug even when it makes health or psychological problems worse
  • Tolerance to its effects, requiring larger doses of the drug to achieve the same result
  • Withdrawal symptoms when drug use is discontinued

Tolerance and withdrawal are hallmarks of addiction. These are usually signs that a person has a physical dependence on a substance such as Ativan.

Ativan (Lorazepam) Abuse FAQs

Ativan (Lorazepam) Abuse Treatment at Riverwalk Ranch
A Dallas-Fort Worth Metropolitan Area Addiction Treatment Center

At Riverwalk Ranch, we are well-equipped to treat Ativan and other benzodiazepine use as part of our comprehensive addiction treatment services. Our medical professionals in the Dallas-Fort Worth area employ only effective and research-based interventions to treat Ativan addiction and withdrawal along with other substance use issues and co-occurring disorders. Among other supportive peers and addiction experts at Riverwalk, you will find a safe and comfortable place to undergo treatment.

If you or a loved one is suffering from Ativan abuse or addiction, contact our addiction treatment center today at (877) 863-3869. Whether you live in Texas or you’re looking for a fresh start in a new environment, Riverwalk Ranch can provide a therapeutic and supportive home for you. Everyone deserves a happy and healthy life free from addiction, and overcoming Ativan abuse can help you achieve it.

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