Alcohol withdrawal is a condition which develops when a person who is addicted to drinking alcohol, or has been drinking continuously for weeks, months or years on end, stops consuming alcohol or significantly reduces its consumption. The withdrawal symptoms do not go easy on people. They start from as less as in 2 hours after stopping the consumption and continue to stay for few weeks. A weak hearted person will lose the will to recover from alcohol and start drinking again. Some symptoms range from anxiety to seizures to rapid heartbeats. So, one way to get assistance in this situation is to rely on prescription meds.
Prime cause of alcohol withdrawal
When a person starts consuming alcohol, the neurotransmitters in his/her brain get altered. For example, the neurotransmitters working with the GABA receptors in the brain gets enhanced with the consumption of alcohol. These chemicals are responsible for the elevating the mood of a person. So initially even though this can be seen a good thing and provoke more people to consume alcohol, in the long-run, however, it greatly lowers the levels of the feel-good chemicals in a person. Eventually, a lot of alcohol needs to be consumed in order to get the same effect one used to get previously. At this stage, it can be said that the body has developed a tolerance towards alcohol. So after continuous uninterrupted drinking, once the person stops consuming alcohol, anxiety, depression, and seizures are very grave outcomes of this. The degree of withdrawal symptoms ranges from person to person and research states that this can be attributed to a person’s genetics. But nevertheless, there are many treatments available at present, and getting the right treatment at the right time is the most important factor in alcohol recovery. Ativan is a top-most anti-anxiety medication that is currently being used by millions of people.
Is Ativan the right medication for alcohol withdrawal?
Yes, Ativan can very well be used for treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms. It can be used for different types and degrees of this withdrawal. It is categorized as a benzodiazepine group of drugs and contains lorazepam. It brings balance to the disrupted chemical in the brain and calms down a person who is suffering from this condition. Compared to other benzodiazepines that can all be prescribed for withdrawal from alcohol, why is Ativan the most prescribed? This is because research states that many people who are entering into the alcohol withdrawal phase initially need a medicine that a longer half-life which is exactly what Ativan has. The half-life of Ativan is about 12 hours which is quite sufficient to provide protection from the agitation, shakiness and preventing the breakthrough that one might feel at the initial stages. It is also a good drug from easing the anxiety symptoms of alcohol because, for people who are suffering trying to quit alcohol, the main reason which provokes them to resume their drinking is anxiety and depression. Hence the proper use of benzodiazepines like Ativan will be very helpful in dealing with various facets of alcohol withdrawal.
How long is the recovery process with Ativan?
Starting the treatment early is a step that plays a crucial role in the recovery of any patient. Many physicians fail to prescribe the right prescription medicine during the initial stages of detoxification. Ativan medicine comes in the form of a pill. 1 mg to 4 mg dose of this medicine is given every 3 or 4 hours. This is done for 3 to 5 days to notice some changes in a person. It usually takes 1 to 2 weeks to recover from the condition, if it is used in conjunction with other methods such as changes in lifestyle and staying in a quiet environment. People who have a history of drug abuse or alcohol abuse must be given a special attention. Pregnant women, people suffering from myasthenia gravis or narrow-angle glaucoma must not use Ativan, as this pill may interact with their condition. A single most important factor in a patient’s recovery is the ability of the person to maintain their sobriety. In addition to this short-term treatment, many long term treatments must also be set in place so a person does not go back to drinking again.