Benzodiazepine Addiction

The effects of benzodiazepine or BDZs are mainly due to how they affect the brain. The most important effects are sedation, sleep enhancement/sleepiness, reduced anxiety, muscular relaxation, loss of memory and anti-epileptic properties. These effects occur because the BDZs have an impact on certain brain receptors. Despite the pharmacological similarities between different BDZs, there are important differences with respect to their clinical applicability.

When used over long periods of time, the users develop some degree of tolerance: users need an increased dose in order to experience the same effect. In cases of drug tolerance, patients run the risk of mental and physical addiction. Quitting under such conditions may lead to withdrawal symptoms. These conditions are often the same as to the original issues for which the person took the drug in the first place, such as anxiety and insomnia. In addition, medical problems such as tremors, sweating, tingling and gastrointestinal problems may occur.

Tranquillisers or sleeping pills contain benzodiazepines and can lead to addiction.

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