Should You Consider Depressant Medications?

Prescription depressants are substances that are typically used to relieve anxiety, muscle spasms, seizures, and insomnia. They depress the normal function of the central nervous system and often induce sleep. They come in pill, tablet, capsules, and liquid form. Examples of depressants include alcohol, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, marijuana, and inhalants. If taken correctly, they can increase calmness. For example, if a person who is suffering from anxiety consumes a prescription depressant, they will likely begin to feel more relaxed or euphoric. 


Benzodiazepines and Barbiturates


Prescription depressants are typically put into two groups: Benzodiazepines and barbiturates. Benzodiazepines are primarily used to treat anxiety and insomnia, but they are also used as a muscle relaxer. Examples of benzodiazepines are Xanax, Klonopin, and Valium. Barbiturates, like benzodiazepines, are used to treat insomnia and anxiety.  Drugs like Ambien and Lunesta are considered barbiturates.


Use With Caution


This class of drugs is widely prescribed to treat several medical disorders and these medications should be used on a short-term basis. Moderate doses can cause an overwhelming sense of drowsiness, slow down your motor skills, and impair your judgment. Heavy doses can result in addiction or even an overdose. Misusing depressants can put you at risk for addiction, physical dependence, and engaging in risky behavior. 


Risks Associated With Prescription Depressants


Misusing depressants or consuming them on a long-term basis puts you at risk of developing an addiction. Because depressants slow down the brain and its ability to function, messages between the brain and the body will be much slower causing bodily functions including heart rate and respiration to slow down. Overusing it can put your body into a stupor.  


Depressant Withdrawal


Like alcohol, dependency on prescription depressants causes both mental and physical dependency and can result in intense symptoms of withdrawal upon quitting. Those symptoms include: dizziness, slowed breathing, dry mouth, confusion, reduced concentration, and lowered blood pressure. Severe withdrawals can cause seizures, convulsions, panic attacks, and delirium.  


Depressant medications have many medical uses that can benefit your physical and mental health, but misusing prescription depressants can cause dependence, tolerance, addiction, and overdose. Not to mention they can contribute to depression. Overcoming an addiction to these substances can give you a better quality of life. It may be difficult, but it is possible. Valiant Living helps show men how to live a life free of substance abuse. If you or someone you love is suffering from addiction, contact Valiant Living at (303) 952-5035 and speak to one of our friendly staff members.