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Ativan Addiction Treatment for Women

Ativan addiction falls under the umbrella of growing prescription drug abuse trends. Healthcare specialists generally agree that a high rate of use and availability drives reported rates of prescription drug abuse, addiction, and ultimately, overdose.

Unfortunately, many people who use Ativan for medical reasons may develop a dependency on the drug. As a result, they may begin to abuse Ativan, using it more often or in higher doses than prescribed. This can lead to Ativan addiction. Fortunately, however, there is hope for those suffering from this substance use disorder. New Directions for Women offers help through addiction treatment

What is Ativan?

ativan misuse treatment for womenAtivan is a brand name for the medication lorazepam, which is a type of benzodiazepine. Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs that act as central nervous system depressants. They work by binding to GABA receptors in the brain, which increases the effects of the neurotransmitter GABA and leads to feelings of calm and relaxation. It is also sometimes used before surgery to help relieve anxiety. The drug can be taken orally, injected, or inhaled.

Ativan can come in the form of:

  • Tablet: 0.5 mg, 1 mg, 2 mg
  • Injection: 2 mg/mL, 4 mg/mL

As Ativan is a CNS depressant, it should be used with caution in patients with other medical conditions that affect the central nervous system, such as depression or lung disease.

This reduces activity in certain areas of the brain, helping to reduce feelings of anxiety and stress.

However, Ativan can be highly addictive and should only be used under close supervision from a healthcare professional. If you suspect that you or someone you know may have Ativan addiction, it’s important to seek help right away, as this condition can grow into the long term and cause serious health complications.

If you are planning on becoming pregnant, notify your healthcare provider to best manage your medications. Women living with anxiety disorders who wish to become pregnant face important decisions regarding the risk versus benefit of benzodiazepine use in pregnancy. Lorazepam can increase the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.

What are Some Stigmas Related to Ativan Addiction?

Stigmas related to Ativan addiction can include feelings of shame and embarrassment. Many people struggling with Ativan addiction may feel like they are weak or flawed in some way. These stigmas can make it difficult for people to seek out treatment. 

How Common is Ativan Addiction?

Ativan addiction is relatively rare, but it can occur. In 2020, 16% of overdose deaths involving opioids also involved benzodiazepines, a type of prescription sedative commonly prescribed for anxiety or to help with insomnia.

Fewer than 1-in-10 prescription abusers misuse drugs with the goal to get high. 2.0 million people or 11.9% of people who misuse prescriptions are definitively addicted to the prescription drugs they misuse. Among addicts, 253,100 or 12.7% acknowledge their addiction. Prescription drugs are the third-most abused illegal substance after marijuana (with 19.4% of the population using) and cocaine (with 15.9% users).

What are the Risks of Ativan Addiction? 

While Ativan is considered relatively safe when used as directed, it can be addictive. People who abuse Ativan may take more than what’s recommended, or take it at higher frequencies. This can lead to dependence, as well as withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop using the drug. 

Addiction to Ativan can also be dangerous since Ativan interacts with other drugs and substances in the body. For example, combining Ativan with alcohol or opioids can increase the risk of overdose and serious medical complications.

What are the Symptoms of Ativan Addiction?

Symptoms of Ativan AddictionThe symptoms of Ativan addiction may vary depending on the individual and the severity of their addiction. Some common signs of Ativan addiction include:

  • Increased anxiety
  • Mood swings or depression
  • Problems at work or at school
  • Taking Ativan more often or in higher doses than prescribed
  • Financial issues due to drug-related expenses
  • Strained relationships with family and friends
  • Continually needing to increase the dose
  • Changes in appetite and sleep patterns

What are the Side Effects of Ativan?

Ativan can cause a number of side effects, including:

  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Weakness
  • Drowsiness
  • Changes in appetite 
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

More serious side effects of Ativan can include: 

  • Agitation
  • Confusion
  • Slurred speech 
  • Memory problems or amnesia
  • Difficulty walking or coordination problems

If you experience any of these more serious side effects, you should seek medical attention immediately. 

Can I Overdose From Ativan Addiction?

Overdose from Ativan is possible, and it can be fatal. Ativan overdose can occur if you take too much of the drug, or if you combine it with other substances, such as alcohol or other drugs.

Symptoms of an Ativan overdose can include: 

  • Slow heart rate
  • Low blood pressure
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Respiratory depression (slowed breathing)
  • Coma

If you believe someone has overdosed on Ativan, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room immediately.

How Does Mental Health Impact Ativan Addiction?

Mental health is closely linked to Ativan addiction, as anxiety and stress are common triggers for Ativan use. Often, Ativan is used to self-medicate these feelings, which can lead to a vicious cycle of dependence and substance abuse. However, by seeking professional help and support from loved ones, it is possible to break free from Ativan addiction and restore your mental health. With the right treatment plan in place, you can reclaim control over your life and move forward with confidence.

Anxiety disorders are some of the most common mental health concern in the United States. Many people throughout the country suffer from the negative effects of anxiety disorders on a regular basis. Although

Are There Withdrawal Symptoms from Ativan addiction?

Yes, Ativan addiction can cause withdrawal symptoms that range in severity depending on a person’s level of dependence and length of time using the drug. Some common Ativan withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Mood changes
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Sweating and tremors
  • Muscle cramps and spasms
  • Anxiety and panic attacks
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Headaches

In some cases, Ativan withdrawal should be managed under medical supervision. That said, with the right support and treatment plan in place, it is possible to successfully overcome Ativan addiction and reclaim your health and well-being.

Why Are Women More Likely to Have an Ativan addiction?

Women are more likely to suffer from anxiety disorders than men and are also more likely to be prescribed Ativan for anxiety relief. Additionally, women may be more likely to develop Ativan dependence due to hormonal changes during pregnancy, menopause, and other times of hormonal flux.

How is Ativan Addiction Treated?

Ativan addiction treatment typically begins with detoxification under medical supervision, followed by participation in a comprehensive rehabilitation program that includes individual and group therapy, as well as skills training and support groups. There are a number of different treatment options available depending on the severity of Ativan addiction and the patient’s overall health.


During the detoxification process, patients are closely monitored by medical professionals to help manage withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety and tremors. Medication may also be used to help manage Ativan withdrawal symptoms and cravings, as well as any underlying mental health conditions. With commitment and hard work, it is possible to recover from Ativan addiction and build a healthy and fulfilling life.


There are a number of mental health treatment options available for Ativan addiction, including behavioral therapy and support groups like Narcotics Anonymous. If you or someone you know is struggling with an Ativan addiction, it’s important to seek help from a qualified healthcare professional right away. With the right support, recovery from Ativan addiction is possible. Therapy sessions can help individuals address the underlying causes of their Ativan abuse, learn healthy coping strategies, and develop relapse prevention skills. 


Support groups provide a safe space where people in recovery can connect with others going through similar experiences. Recovery from Ativan addiction takes time, effort, and commitment. With the determination to commit to recovery and the support of medical professionals, therapy sessions, and support groups, individuals can overcome their Ativan addiction.

To find out which treatment option is right for you or your loved one, speak to your healthcare provider about your individual needs and concerns. It is possible to overcome Ativan addiction and live a healthy, fulfilling life free from anxiety and stress.

Are There Medications Used to Treat Ativan Addiction?

Medications used to treat Ativan addiction may include antidepressants, anticonvulsants, and atypical antipsychotics. These medications are used to address the underlying causes of Ativan abuse and reduce cravings for the drug.

Is Ativan Addiction Treatment Covered by Insurance?

Ativan addiction could be covered by your insurance, depending on your policy. Most insurance companies will cover Ativan addiction treatment if it is deemed medically necessary. If you are struggling with Ativan addiction and would like to seek treatment, contact your insurance provider to see what coverage options are available to you.

Life After Ativan Addiction

After you’ve overcome Ativan addiction, you may feel like you’re finally free from the chains of addiction. However, it’s important to remember that recovery is a lifelong process. You will likely need to attend therapy sessions and support groups on a regular basis in order to stay sober. Additionally, you should avoid triggers that could lead to relapse. If you slip up and use Ativan again, don’t give up on yourself – seek help from a professional treatment provider immediately.

With the right treatment and support, you can overcome Ativan addiction and live a happy, healthy life in recovery.

New Directions for Women Can Support women with Ativan Addiction

Ativan Addiction therapy for women in Costa Mesa CaliforniaAfter struggling with anxiety and depressive thoughts for years, you imagined that your prescription wouldn’t become an issue. Now, things have changed and you’re not sure how to move forward to recovery. Ativan addiction can be a gripping force in your life. New Directions for Women is determined to help you in these difficult times. If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, reach out to New Directions for Women.

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Clinically Reviewed By:

Picture of Heather Black-Coyne, LMFT, CADC II, Chief Clinical Officer

Heather Black-Coyne, LMFT, CADC II, Chief Clinical Officer

Heather most recently served as the Clinical Director of a gender-specific treatment center in Huntington Beach. She is trained in both Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), which serve the needs of our clients, many of whom have experienced both complex trauma and substance use disorder.

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