Alcohol withdrawal occurs when heavy drinkers stop drinking after having drunk heavily for a long time. Alcohol withdrawal can cause serious health problems, including seizures and death in some cases. It’s essential to seek treatment if you have symptoms of alcohol withdrawal after you’ve stopped drinking or reduced your alcohol intake significantly. If left untreated, the condition may escalate into delirium tremens, a potentially life-threatening condition.
However, with proper care and treatment, alcohol withdrawal can be managed safely and effectively. Treatment may include detoxification followed by rehabilitation or support groups.
Ativan for Alcohol Withdrawal
Ativan is a drug that belongs to a class of benzodiazepines medicines. It is used for treating anxiety, alcohol withdrawal symptoms, epileptic seizures, and inducing sleep. A low dose of Ativan is prescribed to control drinking problems in people addicted to drinking alcohol. Apart from being an anti-anxiety medicine, it is also used as a sedative and is prescribed at smaller dosages to treat insomnia. If you are looking for something like how to get off ativan addiction, contact arcsfl team as soon as possible.
How do you take Ativan for alcohol withdrawal?
If you are taking Ativan to control drinking problems, it is usually taken two times a day. The initial dosage of the drug is 0.5 mg orally twice daily on the first day, and the dosage is subsequently increased to 1 mg orally twice daily if required. If you take Ativan under your doctor’s guidance for insomnia or seizures, the drug is usually administered an hour before bedtime. However, do not take more than 4 mg of Ativan within 24 hours. The recommended dose of this medicine for patients suffering from alcoholism is 0.5 mg orally thrice daily.
Take care not to overdose on Ativan as it may be fatal and cause serious side effects such as severe drowsiness, confusion, slowed reflexes, and difficulty breathing. Ensure that you take the prescribed dosage of this medicine for effective results, and avoid taking alcohol while on Ativan treatment. Avoid its use if you are allergic to benzodiazepine drugs or any other inactive ingredients in this medicine.
How long does Ativan take to work?
Ativan usually takes around 30 minutes after ingestion to show symptoms of action. However, it may vary depending on your age, weight, and metabolism rate, among other factors.
How long should you take Ativan?
If you take Ativan for alcohol withdrawal, the medicine is usually taken until your doctor tells you that you no longer require it. In case of insomnia or seizures, continue to use this drug until your doctor instructs otherwise. Do not forget to follow up with your doctor regularly to ensure that you get the desired results and avoid possible adverse effects.
How long can you take Ativan?
You should not take Ativan for a longer duration than recommended by your doctor. However, if you require additional treatment with this drug, you should consult your healthcare provider first before taking extended dosages of the medicine.
What are the side effects of Ativan?
Some common side effects of Ativan include anxiety, clumsiness, drowsiness, dizziness, headache, irritability, restlessness, and upset stomach. You may also experience some rare but severe side effects, such as seizures or hallucinations. If you develop any of these symptoms while taking this medicine, consult your doctor immediately.
What Are the Precautions when Taking Ativan?
- Inform your healthcare provider if you have a history of depression or mental illness or in case you are already using any other medications to treat these problems.
- Avoid using Ativan while pregnant as it may pose severe risks to the unborn baby and nursing infant.
- Do not take alcohol or other sleep medications, antihistamines, sedatives, tranquilizers, antidepressants, narcotic painkillers, and drugs for Parkinson’s disease during treatment with Ativan.
- Do not use this medicine in children under six months old as it may cause severe breathing problems. Avoid driving or operating hazardous machinery until you know how Ativan will affect you.
- Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without the consent of your doctor. You may have to reduce its dosage before stopping it entirely gradually.
- Ativan is a prescription drug and should be used under proper medical guidance and advice only. Do not share the medicine with others for any reason whatsoever. Keep all medication out of reach and sight of children and pets.
How does it work to help with withdrawal symptoms?
Ativan is a benzodiazepine medicine that acts on the brain and helps to reduce the number of seizures by slowing down nerve impulses. It also relaxes muscles and induces drowsiness or sleep to allow you to rest peacefully. Ativan may be used as a sedative for alcohol withdrawal treatment, as it can help calm agitated behavior and reduce anxiety.
What are the benefits of taking Ativan?
Ativan can help you sleep or relax by slowing down your brain activity. It is also used as an anticonvulsant to treat certain types of seizure disorders. It can be used to ease withdrawal symptoms in people who have become physically dependent on benzodiazepines.
Why should I get treatment for my addiction to alcohol?
Alcohol addiction can be classified as a disease that impacts brain function and behavior. Alcohol addiction is linked to life-threatening medical conditions, psychological problems, worsening employment prospects, legal issues, and relationship problems. It may also cause serious health problems. If you are addicted to alcohol or cannot stop drinking even after it has caused harm to you or your relationships, you should consider getting help.
How Can I Get Started with Treatment?
Alcohol addiction is a treatable condition, and the earlier it is diagnosed, the higher the likelihood of successful treatment outcomes. There are many different forms of alcohol addiction treatment, each with its benefits and risks. The best type of alcohol rehab option is the one that works for you. There are various alcohol addiction treatment options to choose from, including inpatient rehab facilities, outpatient programs, and 12-step programs.
Who can prescribe the medication, and how do I go about getting it?
A doctor or other health care provider who is legally allowed to prescribe medications can prescribe Ativan. In some cases, your doctor may determine that you should take medicine only on an as-needed basis. You will then take a dose of Ativan if you have anxiety symptoms that are causing you distress.
What are some side effects of using Ativan for alcohol withdrawal?
Some of the most common side effects of Ativan for alcohol withdrawal include drowsiness, tiredness, nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, insomnia, and irritation.
How do I store Ativan?
You should store all medications at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light to prevent containers from opening accidentally or medicines from losing their effectiveness over time. Always check the manufacturers’ labels for specific instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist to show you how to protect your medication.
What are the dangers of mixing alcohol and Ativan?
You should not drink alcohol while taking Ativan unless advised by your doctor. Alcohol can increase the side effects of this medicine, making it too dangerous to take with certain medications. When combined, these substances have a synergistic effect that can lead to a severe change in heart rate and respiratory function. Because the central nervous system is less responsive, you are at a greater risk of coma or death when mixing these two medications.
Can I take other medications while on Ativan?
No other medications should be taken while on Ativan unless your doctor says it is safe. Many drugs react with benzodiazepines, including antidepressants, antihistamines, pain relievers, certain sleeping pills, muscle relaxants, and others.
What are the possible side effects of using this medication?
Ativan is generally well-tolerated, but some people may experience side effects, especially when they first start taking this medication. Common side effects include drowsiness, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, stomach upset, dry mouth, insomnia, headache, diarrhea or constipation, loss of appetite, and weight loss. The most common side effects are amnesia (forgetfulness), slowed motor skills, and difficulty breathing.
Is Ativan the only option for treating alcohol withdrawal?
The use of benzodiazepines to treat alcohol withdrawal is controversial among medical professionals. This treatment may be very effective for some people, but it can lead to tolerance and dependence and a host of other side effects. In the short term, medications like Ativan may offer relief from alcohol withdrawal symptoms, but this treatment can cause more problems than it fixes in a long time.
What medications interact with Ativan?
Many different medications react negatively when mixed with Ativan, such as antidepressants and drugs to treat high blood pressure and heart failure. Some of the most common drug interactions involve benzodiazepines like Xanax or Valium, sleep medication, muscle relaxants, and antihistamines.
What are the dangers of Ativan abuse or misuse?
You should not take Ativan unless you have a prescription from a doctor. Sometimes, people may abuse these drugs by taking more than the recommended dose or combining medications with alcohol. These substances can be dangerous when mixed and can cause death in some cases, so you mustn’t take any medicines without express permission from your doctor.
Who shouldn’t take Ativan for alcohol withdrawal?
Some people should avoid taking Ativan to treat withdrawal. People with certain types of liver disease, such as cirrhosis, should not take this medication. If you have a history of poor breathing or lung disease, you should not use benzodiazepines for alcohol withdrawal because it can further complicate your condition. These drugs also interact with many different medications, and you should not take them if you are on any other medicine without first consulting your doctor. Do not drink alcohol while taking Ativan or use any drug to treat withdrawal that contains benzodiazepines unless directed by your doctor.
What Are the Long-Term Risks of Taking Ativan?
Ativan is one of the most frequently prescribed tranquilizers in America, and it is also one of the most abused drugs, especially among people attempting to quit drinking. The long-term effects of Ativan are pretty severe, so abuse of this medication can have terrible consequences.
Can Ativan help me drink less?
Some people try to use benzodiazepines like Ativan to replace alcohol. These drugs are no more effective than a placebo in most cases because the brain quickly adapts to their calming effects. In this way, Ativan is similar to other non-benzodiazepine sedative hypnotics like Ambien and Lunesta. It offers relief from withdrawal symptoms in the short term but can worsen anxiety and induce tolerance in a long time.
Is Ativan safe for use with alcohol?
The best way to avoid withdrawal symptoms is to quit drinking entirely. It can be tough to control cravings, but many support groups and counseling options are available that can help you find your way through recovery. Sometimes, doctors prescribe benzodiazepines like Ativan to help you relax while your body adjusts to life without alcohol. In most cases, these drugs have limited effectiveness and should only be used for a short period. When taken with alcohol, benzodiazepines pose a severe risk of overdose because this drug has a narrow safety margin.
How does Ativan treat withdrawal?
Ativan can be helpful when treating withdrawal because it acts on the same brain receptors as alcohol, and it helps you relax and manage stress while your body slowly adjusts to life without alcohol. Other medications may work better in some cases, but Ativan is often prescribed to treat alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
What are the side effects of taking Ativan for alcohol withdrawal?
Benzodiazepines should only be used for a short period because they can worsen anxiety and induce tolerance. These drugs may even cause addiction in some cases, so you must never take this medication without a doctor’s permission. Other side effects may include Drowsiness, Confusion, Memory Problems, Depression, Unsteady Gait, Loss of coordination, lack of focus.
When should you call a doctor or emergency room for help with alcohol withdrawal symptoms?
You should contact your doctor or seek medical attention immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms during alcohol withdrawal: Confusion, Headaches, Seizures, Visual Disturbances, Severe Anxiety, Hallucinations, Fits, Nausea, Vomiting, Racing heart rate, Rapid breathing, Chest pain, Loss of coordination, Tremors, Dizziness, Unsteady gait, Shakiness, Mood swings, Delirium.
Robin has worked with chemical dependency/mental health for over 20 years. She is a certified addiction counselor (CAC) and a certified behavioral health technician (CBHT). Further, Robin has worked with over 17 combined facilities to aid/assist clientele with chemical dependency and acute /chronic psychiatric diagnoses. Her skill set is relapse prevention, chronic relapses, and crisis prevention.