Librium Addiction: Abuse Signs, Effects & Treatment

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Librium Addiction Treatment Guide

What Is Librium?

Librium is the brand name of chlordiazepoxide. It is a type of benzodiazepine like Valium, Xanax, and Klonopin. It is a medication used to treat anxiety and muscle spasms. Historically, Librium was also prescribed to help with alcohol withdrawal. This medication is usually taken by mouth in tablet form, and it usually begins acting within an hour and lasts for six hours. Primarily, the conditions for which Librium is prescribed include:
• Anxiety
• Muscle relaxation and tension
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms like seizures and tremors
• Nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy

The mechanism by which Librium works was unknown when the drug was released. Still, it has been found that benzos, such as Librium, work by using neurotransmitters in the brain, including GABA and 5HTP, that impact the brain’s limbic system. When this interaction occurs, the brain needs more neurotransmitters to function normally. The brain is, therefore, less able to work without the medication.

Librium Addiction Treatment

How Is Librium Used?

Librium is most often prescribed in pill form and should be taken as directed by a doctor. Most doctors will prescribe it for the conditions previously stated, but some will also prescribe it for alcohol withdrawal. When used for this purpose, doctors will usually start at a low dose and increase it slowly if necessary. The dosage can vary throughout the day as well in response to symptoms. However, if you are prescribed Librium for anxiety or muscle spasms, you are probably only prescribed one to four pills every six to eight hours. It comes in 5 mg, 10 mg, and 25 mg strengths. It is generally not safe to take more than 5 mg in 24 hours because of the potential to become addicted to the drug.

Statistics for Librium Abuse

Nearly 2% of American adults have abused a benzodiazepine in their lives. Among individuals prescribed benzos, there is an increase of 17.1%. By 2016, 4.4 out of every 100,000 adults died of an overdose involving benzo. Many overdose deaths linked to benzodiazepines also involve drugs like opioids. More than 30% of opioid overdoses involve a benzo like Librium.

Popular street names for Librium are:
• Downers
• Tranqs
• Bennies
• Benzos
• L
• Blue bombs
• Blues
• Ruffies
• Normies
• Nerve pills

Librium Addiction

Librium is a long-acting sedative in the benzodiazepine family. These drugs reduce tense muscles and fight off anxiety by slowing down brain signals. However, as with most medications, it can cause dependence and addiction. The body becomes accustomed to having frequent doses of the drug to avoid symptoms of withdrawal, which include tremors, seizures, sweating, heart palpitations, and insomnia.

Taking more pills than the prescribed dosage over a long period can result in physical dependency on Librium. When the body becomes dependent on it, the brain works less effectively, and the user begins to feel uncomfortable without the drug. The more often a person takes Librium, the higher their tolerance grows. People often take more of it or combine it with other drugs like alcohol or narcotics to get high.

Signs of Librium Addiction

Librium addiction more often begins innocently. People will take it to catch up on sleep or cope with a stressful day. Many Librium users try to hide that they are on the drug. It makes it harder for loved ones to know that there is a problem.

As individuals become more reliant on Librium, they often increase their dosages. It gets difficult for them to conceal their habits, and they are more likely to reveal visible signs of abuse. The visual and behavioral effects of Valium are similar to those of alcohol. Some signs that may indicate misuse of Librium include:
• Going to different doctors to get Librium prescriptions
• Repeatedly using more than or for longer prescribed
• Lying about their use and hiding their supply
• Unable to control Librium cravings
• Neglecting responsibilities because of drug use
• Spending a lot of time doing illegal activities to obtain drugs
• Stealing to obtain drugs
• Losing interest in hobbies and activities
• Withdrawing from loved ones
• Hanging out with the wrong crowd

How Long Does Librium Last?

Librium has a long half-life of between 24 and 48 hours. It indicates that about half of the drug will be eliminated from your body within the period. Each person has a different metabolism and reacts differently to medications, so it is essential to understand how long Librium lasts.

Elimination time greatly depends on factors such as:
• Genetics and age
• Liver function
• The dosage you took
• Length of use
• Body mass
• Other drugs in your system

Various types of drug tests can reliably detect Librium. It’s detectable in urine for up to six weeks, in blood for up to 48 hours, and in saliva for up to 10 days.

Effects of Librium Addiction

Addiction is a chronic, relapsing disorder that compulsively causes people to use it. When a person is addicted to a drug like Librium, they can have difficulty attempting to stop or reduce the use of the substance on their own. These effects typically begin when a person misuses Librium within the first few times.

Short-term effects of using Librium can include:
• Mood swings
• Hostile and erratic behavior
• Euphoria
• Slowed reflexes
• Dizziness
• Confusion
• Slurred speech

Some of the long-term side effects that can emerge after taking Librium include:
• Impaired cognitive abilities
• Polydrug use
• Physical dependence
• Tolerance
• Addiction
• Overdose
• Depression
• Suicidal behaviors

Symptoms of a Librium Overdose

While taking too much Librium is not usually fatal, mixing this sedative drug with alcohol or similar medicines like Valium is hazardous. These can significantly limit the amount of time before severe symptoms begin. If Librium alone is abused, this drug can cause death because it decreases oxygen to the brain, which can cause significant brain damage or death.

The symptoms of a Librium overdose are pretty similar to the symptoms of an overdose on alcohol, including coma. However, it will most likely cause death in someone who takes more than the recommended amount because it has a higher potential for dependency. Apart from death, the following are some symptoms of a Librium overdose:
• Blurred or double vision
• Difficult or shallow breathing
• Bluish fingernails and lips
• Irregular heartbeat
• Low blood pressure
• Profound confusion
• Extreme dizziness
• Dangerously low body temperature
• Tremors
• Seizures
• Coma

Symptoms of Librium Withdrawal

If a person takes too much Librium, their body will grow accustomed to the amount of dosage taken. The body builds up a tolerance to a drug, and it takes more of the drug for the person to get the desired psychoactive effects. When someone stops using Librium or reduces the dose, their body undergoes withdrawal since the drug no longer stimulates the brain.

Some of the more common withdrawal symptoms of Librium include:
• Anxiety and panic attacks
• Insomnia
• Restlessness
• Agitation and irritability
• Poor concentration and memory
• Muscle tension and aches
• Headache
• Dizziness
• Nausea
• Delusions and paranoia
• Hallucinations
• Seizures
• Confusion and delirium

Recognizing an Addiction

Addiction to Librium is prevalent in people who do not know how to handle their emotions and overcome stress. It rarely happens overnight, but it does begin slowly with just one or two pills a day. You can easily prevent addiction to Librium if you know the signs and symptoms. If someone is abusing Librium, they may become aggressive or secretive when trying to hide the drug from others.

An addiction specialist can help people learn how to avoid abusing Librium physically and mentally. Those addicted need their families and loved ones to support their recoveries. It takes a lot of patience and dedication from the individual, family members, and the rehabilitation center for a client to recover from addiction.

Detox as Librium Treatment

If someone is caught abusing Librium, their doctor may recommend that they try to quit using the drug independently. In some cases, however, an individual might require treatment to fully heal from Librium misuse and to begin a healthy life again. The first step in quitting is coming off the drug and detoxing. This process cleans the body of any remaining Librium and other drugs.

After a person has been through the detox process, they can take professional treatment at a rehabilitation facility and begin learning how to cope with life without the drug. Treatment involves therapy and counseling to learn how to healthily deal with life’s stressors. Clients also work with professionals who are trained in providing relaxation techniques.
Most rehab programs have many resources available and therapists who can assist the person.

Librium Addiction Treatment

Other benzos, like Librium, are usually used for anxiety and are also addictive. These drugs are not as potent as Valium and Xanax, but they can still cause significant dependence. Some people mix Valium and Librium or take them simultaneously, leading to even greater dependency.

If someone is dependent on Librium, they will need to detox before beginning treatment. They will also have to face their addiction if they want to recover. It may also be necessary for an individual to receive a Librium prescription to stay sober and motivated throughout rehab. After some time, a person can try weaning off the medication and try to live sober without it.

If a person is addicted to Librium, they must seek treatment from a rehabilitation center. The Detox process for Librium addiction can be pretty short, unlike Valium, because this drug does not stay in the system for long periods. There are many treatment options available to help people addicted to Librium. A person might need to try several before finding one that fits their needs. Some public treatment options include:

Residential Treatment Centers

These treatment centers are the most extended program and can last for a few months. A person will reside in the center for the duration of their treatment. Some people may be able to leave for work or school but must return every day.

Recovery Coaching

These coaching programs are a great way to help people accomplish treatment goals. Individuals can get to know their addiction and learn about various treatment options. Coaching helps addicts get through recovery by providing a support system to ensure they don’t fall back into the habit.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment is a great way to stop drug abuse without feeling forced to continue using. With this type of program, an individual can learn about their addiction and seek ways to overcome it on their own time. Additionally, they will receive therapy from a professional who can guide them in making positive changes in their life. Many outpatient programs are available for individuals seeking help for Librium abuse and addiction.

12-Step Programs

Twelve-step programs are one of the most well-known and effective ways to overcome addiction. These programs require individuals to attend regular meetings, where they can share their experiences with other people who have similar problems. People learn from each other, which is an excellent way for individuals to motivate each other on their journeys through recovery.

Rational Emotive Therapy

Rational emotive therapy helps people understand their addictions and how these dependencies affect their thoughts and emotions. When individuals begin to feel stressed or anxious, they can identify these feelings and change their thought patterns to cope with the stress in a healthier way instead of the normal reaction, which is to turn to drugs.

Family Support Groups

Family is the basic unit of a healthy society. Addicts must have support from their families during recovery because they will need their love and support more than ever. It can be difficult for people who are still addicted. Still, they should make every attempt possible to make amends with everyone in the family before receiving help from a rehab center or doctor.

Families and loved ones can attend these therapy sessions to learn how to support their loved ones in recovery. There are several types of family support groups available, such as those for children whose parents are addicted and those for families who have lost a loved one due to drug abuse.

Relapse Prevention

This type of therapy helps people learn what steps to take when they are about to relapse. Relapsing is a big part of recovery. People must identify the situations that cause them to use drugs and modify their behaviors so they don’t fall back into addiction. It can include avoiding certain people and places while learning to cope with stress in healthier ways, such as with exercise, meditation, or even a hot bath.

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The thought of Librium overdose can be pretty scary. No one wants to think of their loved ones being dependent on drugs, so it is best to know the symptoms of abuse and what you can do to help. If you think one of your loved ones may be dependent on this drug, you must take action and contact a treatment center immediately. A team of professionals is always ready to help in any way. Addiction, however, is not easy to overcome, and treatment takes some time. Give your loved ones enough time to seek a path toward sobriety that they can be proud about completing.

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Reviewed By:

Dr. John Elgin Wilkaitis

Dr. John Elgin Wilkaitis completed medical school at The University of Mississippi Medical Center and residency in general psychiatry in 2003. He completed a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in 2005. Following this, he served as Chief Medical Officer for 10 years of Brentwood Behavioral Healthcare a private health system including a 105-bed hospital, residential treatment, and intensive outpatient services.

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