Throughout the United States, drug addiction continues to run rampant as governments figure out what they can do to control it. One of the primary issues with some drugs, specifically benzodiazepines, is that they’re prescribed by a physician for medical conditions. When you’ve been prescribed a medication that provides you instant relief from an ailment you’ve suffered from for so many years, it’s even more challenging to determine when you’ve crossed the line from relieving anxiety, insomnia, or seizures, into addiction. Unfortunately, the use of benzodiazepines throughout Los Angeles County and beyond have become a public health crisis. Some experts warn it could be the next crisis.
Why is it that benzodiazepines are so prevalent? Well, you must look at the conditions it’s used to treat. The primary use of benzodiazepines is to treat anxiety, which affects 40 million adults each year in the United States over the age of 18, equating to 18.1 percent of the population. Even with 36.9 percent receiving treatment, it’s a substantial amount of drugs prescribed by doctors. Although many people who take benzos prescribed by their doctors won’t abuse them, there is a significant portion of the population that will, and it’s enough to warrant concern.
For those who can’t sleep, it might even be worse. Becoming reliant on a chemical aid to achieve something humans need is deflating, but many people become addicted to how benzodiazepines make them feel. Although Z-drugs are more commonly used in place of benzos for sleep issues, severe insomnia warrants a more potent drug. An estimated ten to 30 percent of adults struggle with chronic insomnia, so what does this mean? It means that a significant portion of the population is taking medication for necessary reasons, but how many of them are becoming addicted?
Doctors at Yale University say that the figure is high, and benzodiazepines play a key role in the next epidemic. They were initially developed to remove the incredibly dangerous and addictive barbiturate drugs, but experts found out they had similar dangers. An estimated 50 percent of patients who use benzos developed tolerance in four weeks, meaning you’ll need a higher dose to achieve satisfactory effects. If you start increasing your dose, you’ll find it much harder to stop. Even if you want to stop, the withdrawal symptoms can be so dangerous that you’ll need professional treatment. Even worse, from 1996 to 2013, the number of prescriptions soared by 67 percent to 135 million, tripling in that period.
How does this affect Los Angeles County? It affects the region significantly. Los Angeles County is the largest county in the nation, with a population of 10.04 million people in the most recent survey. Los Angeles County spans a staggering 4,753 miles, showing how large it is not only by population but land mass as well. What this means is that Los Angeles County is severely affected by benzodiazepines. Fortunately, if you’re looking for benzodiazepine treatment in Los Angeles County, you’re in luck. Let’s take a look below at how the area is impacted by prescription drugs.
Los Angeles County Benzodiazepine Statistics
According to the California Overdose Surveillance Dashboard, benzodiazepine-related overdose deaths were in the medium range in Los Angeles County, with 1.95 deaths per 100,000 residents, which fared better than surrounding counties. One of the primary issues plaguing the region is fentanyl disguised as a benzodiazepine drug. With its close proximity to Mexico, LA has seen a significant influx of fentanyl-related overdose deaths caused by a laced benzodiazepine.
Those in Los Angeles and surrounding counties should be concerned about the influx of fentanyl-laced benzodiazepines and fake prescriptions circulating the area. However, if you’ve reached a point where you’re purchasing drugs from friends or off the street, it indicates you’ve developed a substance use disorder. By risking your life to buy drugs not prescribed by a doctor or licensed pharmacy, you’re taking unnecessary risks with your life to get high, which is a prime characteristic of addiction.
If you’ve reached this point, you need professional addiction treatment. Not only are you taking unnecessary risks and gambling with your life if you’re unable to get the drug one day, but you’re also going to encounter severe withdrawal symptoms. Since benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms can often result in death, professional treatment is your only option. Below we’ll go over what you can expect by getting benzodiazepine detox in Los Angeles County.
California Highlands Benzodiazepine Detox in Los Angeles County
Benzodiazepine detox in Los Angeles County is a complex and meticulous process that involves several levels of intensive care. Upon arrival, you’ll meet with a team of doctors to discuss your needs. They’ll assess your health and determine what your psychological, physical, and social needs will be for treatment. At this point, they’ll create a treatment plan for you, which can be revised as you progress.
Detox is widely considered the most important stage of the treatment process. During detox, you’ll spend three to seven days of uncomfortable moments removing toxins from your body. Since benzodiazepine withdrawal is dangerous, you’ll be closely monitored by staff and administered medication to help make you more comfortable. In some cases, depending on the severity of your benzodiazepine use disorder, you could be given controlled amounts of other benzos to prevent you from having seizures. Once all traces of the drug have left your body and you’re medically cleared, you’ll move to the next stage in your journey.
If you have a long history of relapsing on benzodiazepines or other drugs, removing yourself from temptations and an unsafe home environment is in your best interest. Once detox concludes, you’ll move into an inpatient treatment center with a staff dedicated to serving your needs. The process will last anywhere from 30 to 90 days, and you’ll undergo several forms of therapy that help get to the root of your benzodiazepine addiction. Once uncovered, you’ll learn how to change your behaviors through cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and also be given the tools for relapse prevention. It is an invaluable part of the journey that will mean lasting change is in your future.
Once you’ve reached the end of your stint in treatment, your journey isn’t over yet. Although you’ve accomplished a lot, you haven’t implemented these new behaviors in society. It’ll be a new challenge to conquer, which is to use these newly-founded tools in a social setting. There will be temptations and hardships, but our facility will connect you with fellow alumni and 12-step programs to help you along the way. Remember, it’s ok to lean on others. Don’t isolate as it could spell disaster in the form of relapse.
Benzodiazepine Detox in Southern California FAQs
If you’ve decided that treatment is in your best interest, we know that you may have many questions before moving forward. Fortunately, we’ve put together a list that anticipates them and provides answers. If your question isn’t answered below, or you need more information, please contact our intake coordinators.
How long is rehab?
The short answer? It depends. If you were prescribed benzodiazepines by a doctor and took them as prescribed, your stint in rehab is going to be a much simpler process. On the contrary, someone who abused benzodiazepines and took much more without a prescription is going to need extensive care. This figure will vary from one person to the next, meaning it’s hard to provide a solid answer. Benzodiazepine treatment can range anywhere from 30 to 90 days. However, it could be much longer, especially if someone has a co-occurring mental health condition or engages in polysubstance use, where they’re addicted to other drugs or alcohol and benzos.
Does California Highlands provide transportation?
As long as you contact our intake coordinators prior to arrival, we’ll provide transportation to and from the airport, as well as to off-site appointments. Please keep in mind; you will incur extra charges for this service, as well as having to pay for the cost of travel.
How much does drug rehab cost?
Drug rehab is solely dependent on how long you’re under our care and whether or not you’re insured. Please contact our staff for more information.
Do I have to travel?
Yes. Even if you’re in Los Angeles County, you’re expected to travel to our facility.
What insurance carriers does California Highlands take?
We accept most major insurance carriers, and we’re in-network with a lot as well. Please reach out to our staff to find out if we take yours.