Sedative Drug Addiction and Treatment

Sedative hypnotics are prescription drugs used as sleeping pills or sedatives that affect your central nervous system and have a calming effect on your body. Older adults with anxiety or insomnia commonly use sedative drugs.

There are three types of sedative-hypnotic drugs such as benzodiazepines, Z-drugs, and barbiturates. Drug authorities in the United States highly regulate sedatives since they can be addictive. It is vital that you only take them only as prescribed drugs to avoid physical dependency and addiction.

If you or your loved one misuse sedative-hypnotic drugs, then reach out to The Recovery Team. We offer drug addiction treatment in a safe environment to help you recover from the effects of addiction.

Get Help for Sedative Drug Addiction

Addiction to sedative or anxiolytic drugs can have adverse effects on your life. Some hypnotic drugs have been known to cause memory issues and stress. The first step to battle against addiction is to accept that you are suffering from it.

Once you accept the problem, reach out to a healthcare professional to start your treatment.

There are several levels of care to treat people going through addiction. The most effective level of care is a residential treatment program.

Other levels of care that can help you to achieve sobriety include:

  • Outpatient treatment program
  • Partial hospitalization program
  • Intensive outpatient program

Residential and detox treatment programs can help you to overcome sedative drug addiction. You can seek help for yourself or a loved one at The Recovery Team. Call us today at (800) 817-1247.

Symptoms of Sedative Drug Addiction

You may be addicted to sedative drugs if you regularly take them and cannot start your day without taking them. At this point, your body is used to the medication, and you may have developed tolerance.

Some of the physical signs of sedative-hypnotic drug addiction are:

  • Drowsiness
  • Impaired motor skills
  • Hallucinations
  • Excessive sweating
  • Slurred speech
  • Respiratory depression
  • Sleep disorder

Some of the psychological changes you will experience are needing a higher dose and consuming it more often.

Individuals are likely to combine it with alcohol to achieve the euphoric effects of drugs. Such people also experience intense cravings that cause relapse if they try to quit sedative drug use.

When to Seek Treatment…

Sedative drugs like benzodiazepine are known to increase the level of GABA receptors and enhance their activity. This change leads you to experience its soothing effects. Immediately talk to your doctor if you feel like you cannot control the intake of sedatives.

Addiction is a chronic mental illness, and if you try to detox at home, you are likely to experience the following symptoms of withdrawal such as:

  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea

The help of doctors and other medical experts at the treatment center is a secure way to recover from addiction. Look out for the signs and symptoms of addiction to seek treatment.

If a Loved One Needs Help…

It is painful to see your loved one suffering due to addiction. Dependence on sedative-hypnotic substances can complicate your lifestyle. You can rebuild your relationship with them by learning about addiction and how they feel.

Support them instead of abandoning them. Learn about the treatment programs and encourage them to seek professional help.

Give them time to adjust to the idea of life without drugs. Provide them with a safe environment at home. Make sure your house is drug-free, making it easier for them to recover.

When helping them recover, remember to take care of yourself. You should be physically and mentally stable to support your loved one.

Causes of Sedative Addiction

The causes of addiction vary from person to person. According to recent scientific studies, a person may have a higher possibility of abusing substances or being addicted if they have more potential risks for addiction.

Following are some of the causes of addiction to sedative drugs:

Family History

Family history plays a vital role in causing addiction in various ways. Genetics is one of the significant factors that can lead to substance abuse. The likelihood of developing sedative abuse disorder is typically higher in people who inherited personality characteristics from their close family.

People exposed to drugs at home, where consuming them is perceived as an acceptable habit, are more likely to experiment with drugs as they grow older. Family history does not always lead to addiction but increases the possibility of misusing it.

You can avoid addiction by limiting your drug or alcohol use and learning about the symptoms of addiction.

Addictive Potential

Sedative or non-benzodiazepine hypnotic drugs (Z-drugs) are for older people who have insomnia. This drug is available as a prescription and OTC medication. This medication has sedative effects and depresses the function of the central nervous system, especially the brain.

It impacts your sensory response, such as pain or touch. Some hypnotic drugs, like barbiturates, bind with GABA receptors, and you experience their addictive effects. The risk of addiction increases when you misuse or abuse this drug.

Even if you are correctly using it, you are still likely to develop a dependence on this drug. One hypnotic drug like Xanax (benzodiazepine) has addictive potential. A drug user will feel calm and experience agitation when avoiding the drug.

Risk Factors of Sedative Addiction

Substance addiction can affect people of various cultures and ages. It might be challenging to understand why some individuals are more susceptible to it than others.

A number of things can make you more likely to develop an addiction to drugs. Additionally, some drug types and substance use techniques are more compulsive than others.

Some of the risk factors for hypnotic drug addiction are:

  • Drug availability
  • Social pressure
  • Lack of support

If you are suffering from addiction, reach out to The Recovery Team. We provide support and care during residential treatment at our facility. To help you maintain sobriety, we provide counseling and therapy sessions.

Drug Availability

Sedative drugs are controlled substances, and you can legally purchase them with a doctor’s prescription. However, people can get this drug through various illegal sources. This class of drug is also provided to patients dealing with alcohol addiction.

However, they are also likely to develop a dependence on it. Individuals suffering from severe substance use disorder may use a fake prescription or access this drug through illegal sellers on the street.

The availability of substances at home can also cause addiction among young adults. Parents’ use of substances at home can influence children to use them since they learn such behaviors from their elders.

Social Pressure

There is incredible pressure on kids and teenagers to fit in. People who influence your behavior or inspire you can cause addiction to OTC sleep aids.

A person with supportive parents may consume drugs if their friends consume them. Sometimes high school students use drugs so their friends accept them.

Social media trends and specific famous figures on a social platform can also cause an individual to develop substance use disorder. Such trends can sometimes be subtle, and social media trends can slowly standardize drug use among teenagers.

Social pressure causes addiction because a person does not want to be rejected and wants to be socially accepted.

Lack of Support

If a person is physically dependent on hypnotic drugs, they may find it challenging to get help if there is a lack of support from their loved ones.

A poor environment at home and a lack of supervision can cause drug addiction. A robust support system is vital to recovering from addiction.

Effects of Sedative Addiction

Sedative abuse, defined as using sedative-hypnotic drugs in large doses or ways other than those recommended by a doctor, can have negative consequences, like an overdose.

When you are taking a prescription drug, your doctor may inform you about the short-term side effects of the drugs.

However, if you misuse this drug for months or years, you risk experiencing long-term effects such as damage to vital organs like the brain, liver, or kidney.

Older people are more likely than younger ones to experience health issues when taking sleep medications. Sleeping pills typically last longer in your system as you get older. After taking these, you may feel sleepy all day.

Effects on Safety

Sedative drugs like benzodiazepines cause drowsiness and dizziness. This side effect can last one to two days and cause confusion and memory issues.

Individuals experiencing such effects are at risk of blacking out, which can result in car accidents. You may experience impaired motor movements that can result in severe injuries like fractures.

Effects on Relationships

Relationships suffer a lot due to substance abuse and addiction. A relationship in which one partner is misusing substances can cause conflict. Addiction harms many parts of a person’s life, including their relationships with family, peers, and partners.

Addiction ruins your social and personal life. Your loved ones may hesitate to talk to you about your behavior, which can impact the overall environment at home. Addiction can cause:

  • Anxiety
  • Lack of trust
  • Dishonesty

Family therapy can help you during such times. Getting help is the only solution to this problem. By helping yourself, you are helping your loved ones too.

Effects on Employment

Sleeping pills cause sedation that affects your concentration level. Lack of interest and poor concentration can impact your overall performance at the workplace. That can lead to financial instability, and you risk losing your job.

If you are consuming sedative drugs before or during work, then it is a clear sign of substance use disorder. You should seek medical help.

Effects on Health

Drugs that directly impact your brain can cause the following symptoms such as:

  • Lack of appetite
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Heartburn
  • Poor decision making
  • Slurred speech
  • Mood swings

It can cause insomnia and anxiety. You may also show signs of depression. In severe cases, individuals are at risk of experiencing seizures. These drugs can disrupt normal breathing and can cause chronic lung problems.

If you try to lower or quit drug use, you are at risk of experiencing withdrawal symptoms. That occurs because you are dependent on sedative drugs. It is best to consider medical detox for safe recovery to avoid severe withdrawal symptoms.

Treatment of Sedative Drug Addiction

The first step towards recovery is acknowledging that you have struggled due to drug dependence. The next step is to find a suitable treatment that can help you to rebuild your life and restore your physical and mental health.

People have a wide range of therapy programs to help them deal with mental disorders and addiction. For instance, some individuals with severe addictions begin with a detoxification program before moving on to rehab.

Some people may start their healing process at a residential or outpatient treatment facility. You can join support groups and therapy sessions after treatment to maintain sobriety. You will learn to deal with triggers during rehab and avoid sedative drug use.

Medical Detox

Although you can detox at home, medical detox is the safest type. Detox can help you to get rid of toxins in your body safely. During detox, you risk experiencing withdrawal symptoms due to the absence of drugs in your body.

Withdrawal symptoms usually range from mild to severe and depend on the severity of the patient’s addiction. Some clients may require medication-assisted therapy to help them overcome these symptoms. Prescription drugs provided by medical experts are safe to use for a limited time. The length of detox depends on the following:

  • Amount of substance abused
  • Duration of addiction
  • Family history
  • Current medical condition

Residential Rehab

Residential rehab, also known as inpatient rehab, is a structured level of care. This treatment program is suitable for those who suffer from severe substance use disorder. You must follow a daily schedule of therapy sessions and various activities to keep you occupied.

The length of the inpatient program ranges from 30 to 90 days. Like a detox program, this also depends on your overall health. Residential rehab offers:

  • Relapse prevention therapy
  • Family programs
  • Trauma programs
  • Veteran programs

Residential programs help you recover in a home-like environment, and you can learn new life skills. During your stay, you will learn to adopt healthy habits to deal with stress.


Therapies employed at rehab centers depend on your health and drug abuse patterns. Cognitive behavioral therapy is used to help you deal with negative thoughts and alter your toxic habits. Such thoughts and behavior can cause relapse. This therapy is best for co-occurring disorders.

Individual and group therapy can help you share your thoughts with a therapist and other facility members. Different therapy programs that the treatment facility offers include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • EMDR therapy
  • Group therapy

You can also join support groups after finishing your treatment program. Support groups can help you to help others like you who are dealing with addiction.