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Benzodiazepine addiction

Break the cycle of benzodiazepine addiction

Let our holistic therapists help you get over your benzo addiction in comfortable and tranquil surroundings


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“Delamere focuses on equipping you with the tools to love sobriety and understand what led to the addiction in the first place which really helped me grow.” Delamere Guest, 2021

Holistic approach to recovery

Personalised programmes

Flexible stays

24-hour care & support

Private luxury accommodation

What is benzodiazepine addiction?

Also known as ‘benzos’, benzodiazepines are psychoactive drugs that are frequently prescribed to treat anxiety, panic disorders, insomnia and seizures. They are classed as ‘depressants’, which means they work by slowing down the central nervous system, having a calming and sedative effect on the user. The most commonly prescribed benzodiazepines are alprazolam (Xanax), clonazepam (Klonopin), diazepam (Valium) and lorazepam (Ativan).

Most people take benzodiazepines as prescribed, but if used for long periods the potential for benzodiazepine addiction is high. When benzodiazepines were first prescribed for anxiety in the 1960s, it was commonly believed they were harmless. Decades later, it’s now clear that they are dangerous drugs, prone to abuse and addiction. Often taken with alcohol and other opioid drugs, misuse of benzodiazepines is common, estimated at 17% of overall use (1).

At Delamere, we have a team of experts who understand prescription drug addiction and can help people to recover with a range of evidence-based techniques at our retreat in Cheshire. We can support our guests with a medically supervised drug detox to reduce the physical and mental cravings for benzodiazepines complemented by one-to-one counselling and group therapy work.

If you need help with benzodiazepines addiction, contact our team today and learn more about the different programmes we offer here at Delamere.

See how a stay at Delamere can give you the time, space and tools needed to grow beyond your addiction. Book a consultation

Signs and symptoms of benzodiazepine addiction

Mental health disorders are incredibly common affecting as many as 1 in 10 people worldwide (2) and the number of anxiety disorders has risen sharply since the start of the pandemic. Benzodiazepines are often prescribed alongside psychological and behavioural therapies, but they aren’t designed for long-term use. Patients who take them for more than three to four weeks are likely to have withdrawal symptoms if they suddenly quit.

The calming effect benzodiazepines have on the body and brain make them open to misuse. It’s easy for anyone to become addicted to these sensations and develop uncontrollable urges to achieve the same relaxed state. Someone who is addicted to benzodiazepines may start to take more than they need or try to buy it illicitly. If you have been prescribed a sedative, such as Xanax or Valium, and are concerned about benzodiazepine addiction, it’s time to seek professional help.

Common physical symptoms of benzodiazepine addiction:
Slurred speech
Drowsiness and dizziness
Loss of appetite
Lack of co-ordination
Slow reflexes
Confusion

Some mild side effects are expected when taking benzodiazepines, but if you notice a change in someone’s behaviour or any of these exaggerated symptoms, it’s time to ask for professional help.

The effects of benzodiazepine addiction

Long-term, high-dose use of benzodiazepines has been associated with a wide range of negative health consequences including severe mental health disorders which make it difficult for abusers to avoid relapse (3). Cognitive decline, dementia and falls are also common in older people (4). Prolonged use should be avoided by the elderly, people with a history of drug or alcohol abuse or those with personality disorders.

Benzodiazepines are often seen as less harmful than other substances and, as a result, are frequently abused with other substances which adds to their potency. When taken with prescription opioids, benzodiazepines can compound the depressant effects on the Central Nervous System increasing the risk of sedation, respiratory problems, coma and death (5).

People who are physically dependent on benzodiazepines will experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop which include:

Sleep disturbance
Irritability
Increased tension and anxiety
Panic attacks
Hand tremors
Sweating
Difficulty concentrating
Dry retching and nausea
Weight loss
Palpitations
Headache
Muscular pain and stiffness (6)

If you, or someone you know, is addicted to benzodiazepines, it’s important to get help. At Delamere wellness retreat we have a team of trained psychotherapists who can help you overcome prescription drug addiction and move on with your life.

Treatment for benzodiazepine addiction

There are different approaches to treating benzodiazepine addiction depending on the severity of abuse, but both require the person to want help. If you are ready to change, but are at a high-risk of harm or relapse, it is generally recommended that your symptoms are managed with initial stabilisation, followed by maintenance therapy in a specialist residential addiction centre (4).

An initial drug detox will help you to gradually taper off benzodiazepines to ensure there are no life-threatening consequences. The length of time this takes will depend on your current dose, the length of time you have been taking the medication and how well your body tolerates the withdrawal. Medication can be given, such as anticonvulsants and GABA receptor antagonists, to expedite the process and reduce any negative side effects.

Studies show that psychotherapy, used alongside weaning off benzodiazepines, is more effective overall than gradual dose reduction alone (7). The aim of talking therapies, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), is to get to the root cause of your addiction, identify your triggers and help you develop strategies to manage those triggers in everyday life. At Delamere, every guest is assigned a personal focal therapist and mentor to help them in the early days of the withdrawal process through to a successful and lasting recovery.

The Delamere approach to benzodiazepine addiction

At Delamere, we have a very unique approach to therapy. Instead of just treating the symptoms of anxiety, we help our guests to identify the cause and heal, so they don’t turn to drugs or alcohol to cope. We ensure every guest feels safe and comfortable in relaxed surroundings before embarking on our three-step treatment model that has been specially designed using the latest research. Once we know the origin of your anxiety, we can help you to grow your mindset and regain control.

The ways to deal with anxiety suggested earlier are all incorporated into our Stop, Start, Grow rehab programmes. Where each guest will have a chance to overcome anxious emotions through a range of one-to-one/group therapy sessions and somatic healing experiences including breathwork, meditation, massage, grounding techniques, dance, equine and art therapy. With the right tools in place you will leave our retreat with 12 months of aftercare to support you in every area of your life.

Stop. Start. Grow

Our Stop Start Grow model is a refreshing approach to treatment and is what makes recovery at Delamere different. Our goal is always to give you the mindset and tools to grow beyond addiction and live life on your terms once you leave us.

Stop

Settle into your new environment
and remove yourself from
any distractions

A day at Delamere

Start

Spend time with our therapists to discover what led you to this behaviour in the first place

Delamere treatment model

Grow

Set healthy boundaries,
exciting new goals and prepare for
life after Delamere

Environment

Our core elements of treatment

We believe that whatever the reason for benzodiazepine addiction – whether to deal with trauma or escape stress – it has to start somewhere. Rather than adhering to the conventional step-based programmes, we look at underlying factors that drive your behaviour. Only by recognising how you arrived at this point can you begin to positively shape your future.


1.

Stopping the cycle of anxiety and addiction safely and comfortably

2.

Healing whatever
pain is causing
the behaviour

3.

Instilling tools to help facilitate change and encourage continued growth

Why choose Delamere?


Holistic approach to recovery


Discreet location


Luxury ensuite accommodation


Personalised programmes


Flexible stays


24-hour care & support


On-site gym & health studio


Business & family lounges


Free collection service

“My own journey through addiction was the inspiration for Delamere. We provide exemplary care in first-class facilities, focusing on creating lasting outcomes for our guests and their families. Helping them not just overcome their addiction, but grow beyond it.”

Martin Preston, Founder & CEO at Delamere

Transformational stories

Addicted to benzodiazepines?

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Know someone who needs help with benzodiazepine addiction?

If a friend, family member or work colleague is addicted to prescription drugs, it’s important they get help.

Our admissions team is on hand 24/7 to help answer any questions about our therapeutic programmes and make sure your loved one gets the support they need.

Call the team today on 0330 111 2015 to discuss the different options available.