Clonazepam, also known as Klonopin or K-pin, is a benzodiazepine drug that has anxiolytic, hypnotic, sedative, anticonvulsant, and muscle relaxant properties. This drug affects the central nervous system of the body, and is considered to be a long-acting benzodiazepine. This drug is often highly effective for the management of certain anxiety disorders, and if taken longer than four weeks, it can lead to serious withdrawal symptoms and dependence.
When clonazepam is prescribed by a doctor and then abused, it is still drug abuse. This practice is on the rise, as people buy prescriptions of the drug for personal use. While many people start taking clonazepam to relieve anxiety symptoms, they continue to seek and use it to achieve the same level of relaxation. Benzodiazepine abuse is an increasing problem in the U.S., and it leads to job loss, poor scholastic performance, social isolation, and interpersonal relationship strain.
The Effects of Clonazepam
People who abuse Klonopin do so to achieve an intense feeling of euphoria and relaxation, which occurs when the drug slows down brain activity. These pleasurable feelings often lead to addiction. In order to combat the irritation and anxiety associated with stimulant abuse (meth and cocaine), some people will use Klonopin as a means of going to sleep.
The effects are strengthened by alcohol consumption, and many people addicted to Klonopin often drink to enhance the effects. This could lead to overdose, coma, or death. When more than one substance is abused (poly-substance abuse) there are devastating consequences, such as physical dependence, psychological dependence, multi-organ failure, or accidental overdose. According to SAMHSA, a nationwide study of emergency departments found that sedative-hypnotics were one of the most frequently abused drugs that led to medical visits. Also, around 95 percent of benzodiazepine users are poly-substance abusers.
Addiction disorders often co-occur along with other problems. These include:
- Anxiety disorders
- Depressive disorders
- Stimulant abuse
- Panic disorder
- Poly-substance abuse
- Panic disorder
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
Signs and Symptoms of Clonazepam Abuse
There are many symptoms that are associated with clonazepam abuse and dependence. These include:
- Panic attacks
- Doctor shopping
- Obsessive drug-seeking behavior
- Lack of motivation
- Withdrawal from friends and family
Withdrawal Effects and Snorting
When someone has used clonazepam long-term, that person becomes tolerant to the drug. Abrupt cessation of this drug can lead to serious withdrawal symptoms, which is the reason medical providers slowly taper the drug. The withdrawal symptoms include psychosis, seizures, panic disorder, tremors, anxiety, irritability, muscle cramps, seizure, and hallucinations.
Many clonazepam abusers snort this drug after crushing a pill. This is done through the nose to achieve a bigger high. The effects of snorting benzodiazepines include erosion of the nasal lining and nose septum, slowed heart rate, cessation of breathing, chance of death related to overdosing, enhanced depressant effects when taken with alcohol.
Rehabilitation and Recovery
Many clonazepam addicts have difficulty stopping drug use by themselves. The addict often needs physical and psychological support to get through the withdrawals effects and not revert back to drug abuse. With clonazepam, any rehab centers all over the world specialize in treating this type of addiction. If you or someone you love is using this drug, consider calling a treatment center near you.