Ativan is the Brand-Name of Lorazepam 

Ativan is commonly prescribed for anxiety, irritable bowel syndrome, insomnia, and epilepsy. It also prescribed as a muscle relaxer for muscle pain and to help relieve the pain of fibromyalgia and restless legs syndrome. In addition to the prescribed uses of the drug, many individuals illegally use the drug without a prescription as self-medication for anxiety or in pursuit of a “high”, particularly in combination with other drugs or alcohol. Both legal and illegal users of the drug have the potential of falling into Ativan drug abuse, especially after long-term use.

Long-Term Ativan Abusers Can Easily Become Addicted

Long-term Ativan drug abuse raises an individual’s tolerance for the drug, forcing them to take more in order to achieve the same effect. Taken together, these two qualities mean that an Ativan abuser must continually try and find new ways to get access to larger and larger quantities of the drug. This aspect of Ativan drug abuse can be the most destructive to the user’s relationships with family and friends, as they seek to fuel their Ativan drug abuse through a variety of negative destructive behaviors. Lies, theft, and other illegal activities can all be justified in the mind of an Ativan abuser as they seek a way to get more of the drug, injuring and alienating those around them. Ativan, particularly when mixed with alcohol, has also been a factor in many sexual assaults.

Ativan Overdose is Most Common When Used with Alcohol

In addition to the negative effects of long-term Ativan drug abuse on the user, their family, and friends – there is also the danger of overdose. Ativan overdose is most common when it is used in conjunction with alcohol. Symptoms of an Ativan drug overdose can include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Mental confusion
  • Memory loss
  • Lethargy
  • Lack of coordination
  • Loss of muscle strength
  • Hypotension
  • Cardiovascular depression
  • Respiratory depression

Long-term Ativan drug abusers will experience severe withdrawal symptoms if they stop taking the drug abruptly. These symptoms can include:

  • Insomnia
  • Excessive sweating
  • Anxiety & panic attacks
  • Depression
  • Tremors & convulsions
  • Stomach & muscle cramps
  • Nausea & vomiting

Due to these potentially serious withdrawal symptoms and the overall difficulty in stopping Ativan drug abuse “cold turkey”, individuals should always seek professional supervision before attempting to quit Ativan.