Sleeping Pill Addiction
Addiction to sleep aids can be a difficult problem to maintain and overcome. But before we discuss the details of the addiction, it may be beneficial to first talk about the common causes for the addiction.
Insomnia is one of the leading causes of addiction to sleep aids. There are thousands of people across the country that experience fatigue and tiredness, yet, they are unable to sleep. Many of these individuals lie in bed for hours and are unable to keep their eyes closed for more than a few minutes. Once asleep, these people often wake up over and over, or are completely unable to return to sleep after sleeping just a couple of hours. These individuals often experience exhaustion and deteriorated health due to the lack of rest.
Insomnia can slowly build anxiety as an individual lies awake and contemplates the difficulty coming the next day in which they will struggle through work or school being completely exhausted. Insomnia can also cause mood swings and depression.
Aside from a sleeping disorder, addiction to sleep aids can also be caused by sheer curiosity and quite frankly, stupidity. There are many people in the world who abuse drugs to have fun or to self medicate in order to block out a negative emotion or escape a negative situation. These individuals are just as likely to develop addiction as any individual suffering from a related disorder. The habitual use of sleeping aids (as a way to forget problems or have fun in the euphoric and drowsy feelings) will eventually establish a tolerance in the body and soon enough a craving for more and more.
Over time, and especially for individuals who learn to need sleep aids in order to achieve restful sleep, the body can become extremely dependent on a steady supply of the medication and react badly when not available. In addicts who are addicted to sleep aids it is common for them to undergo and exhibit common symptoms of addiction including lack of interest in old hobbies, changed personality traits and intoxicated behavior. Sleeping aids however also carry another set of symptoms which should be specifically watched out for. Sleeping aid addicts are often melancholy or experience depression. In sleep aid addiction this depression has been known to intensify to suicidal thoughts; individuals have been known to attempt their own death.
Also, while any addiction carries the risk of overdose, addiction to sleep aids holds a slightly higher than average potential for overdose. As people often pass out before the drug takes full effect, it can be hard for others nearby, who may be using the drug to fully know if their friend or companion has truly overdosed. When an individual overdoses they are at a high risk for organ damage, including the risk to fall into a coma, experience brain damage and even die. Due to the nature of the effects caused by sleeping pills, many people who are addicted have died because others who were awake were unable to tell if they were sleeping or if they had overdosed.
As with other addictions, rehabilitation from sleeping aid addiction has its own set of trials and tribulations. Individuals detoxing from sleeping aid addiction will often have trouble sleeping, possibly going 2 to 3 days with little or no sleep. Recovering sleeping aid addicts also commonly experience depression and mood swings, hopeless thoughts, and even nightmares. The intensity of withdrawals often depends on the intensity of the previous addiction. Luckily, sleeping aids are not the hardest drug to detox or recover from, such alcohol or heroin, which are painful. Clients should still opt for therapy, guidance and plenty of support for an individual to stop abusing sleeping aids and successfully move onto a healthy/drug-free life style.
For more information on our addiction treatment programs and therapeutic approaches, call toll free at: 800-960-5041. Florida Center for Recovery offers residential drug and alcohol rehab treatment through 12-Step and Non 12-Step Programs.