Benzo Awareness

Exposing the Dangers of Benzodiazepines and Bringing Awareness for Freedom

More than 30 percent of overdoses involving opioids also involve benzodiazepines, a type of prescription sedative commonly prescribed for anxiety or to help with insomnia. Benzodiazepines (sometimes called “benzos”) work to calm or sedate a person, by raising the level of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA in the brain. Common benzodiazepines include diazepam (Valium), alprazolam (Xanax), and clonazepam (Klonopin), among others.

Every day, more than 115 Americans die after overdosing on opioids. However, between 1996 and 2013, the number of adults who filled a benzodiazepine prescription increased by 67%, from 8.1 million to 13.5 million. The quantity obtained also increased from 1.1 kg to 3.6 kg lorazepam-equivalents per 100,000 adults. Combining opioids and benzodiazepines can be unsafe because both types of drug sedate users and suppress breathing—the cause of overdose fatality—in addition to impairing cognitive functions. In 2015, 23 percent of people who died of an opioid overdose also tested positive for benzodiazepines. Unfortunately, many people are prescribed both drugs simultaneously. In a study of over 300,000 continuously insured patients receiving opioid prescriptions between 2001 and 2013, the percentage of persons also prescribed benzodiazepines rose to 17 percent in 2013 from nine percent in 2001. The study showed that people concurrently using both drugs are at higher risk of visiting the emergency department or being admitted to a hospital for a drug-related emergency. 

The American Geriatrics Society (AGS) placed benzodiazepines on a list of medications that should be avoided in patients over 65 years of age. Several major psychiatric associations also advise against using benzodiazepines for generalized anxiety disorder and insomnia in the elderly. Despite these recommendations, benzodiazepines continue to be prescribed to a group with the highest risk of serious adverse effects from these medications. In the United States, more than 10% of women and 6% of men aged 65 to 80 years filled at least one prescription for benzodiazepines in a 1-year period, approximately one-third of them receiving benzodiazepines for longer than 120 days in a year. This widespread prescription of benzodiazepines in a population for which they are generally contraindicated has the potential for important public health consequences because benzodiazepine use is associated with risk of dependence, cognitive deficits, falls resulting in fractures, motor vehicle accidents, and overall mortality.

 

Update: October 4, 2021 11:10am EST by Reeni Mederos
 
It’s been a long journey. Mommy came to live with me 2 years ago as she was having adverse side effects with the benzodiazepine, Klonopin (Clonazepam). The doctors gave it to her for anxiety to help her sleep. She had 2 heart attacks many years ago but no damage to her heart. She also has diverticulosis which the benzo exasperated. The drug actually caused the anxiety. It wasn’t her anxiety. And many people on these benzos are tossed off as being mental. They aren’t. I’m telling you it’s the meds!
 
When she tried to half the dose, it threw her into withdrawals and she didn’t know she wasn’t supposed to do that because the doctors never instructed her on what “not” to do with this medication. You aren’t supposed to take it for years. It’s a short-term drug. Do the research. And people get addicted. And it’s worse than heroin to come off.
 
She went through many panic attacks and it started giving her many other issues. Predominately gastrointestinal issues. So when she moved here to Georgia, I helped her wean off the Clonazepam and it was a hard struggle for Mommy. The withdrawal symptoms were horrific. And she wasn’t even on a high dose. That’s how bad this med it. I spent so much time researching, praying, and trying to get doctors to help. It was disappointing to learn how doctors don’t really know this drug and how to wean people off of it. All they do is know how to prescribe drugs. That’s big pharma for you. It’s a sad state. But I was able to find a good few doctors and God led the process the whole time. I even got into a few disagreements with doctors I didn’t agree with for her best interest.
 
My prophetic insight paid off. Just being led by the spirit of God. After all the prayers, tears, and trials, my mom is 100% better today. This page is not long enough to get into all the details. I watched my mom suffer so much and I had to war for her daily. It was hard on me at times. Only God knows how many tears I shed and how much my mom went through. I had to pound heaven and exert shameless persistence with God. I was very bold. I had to renounce and divorce myself and my mom from death, fear, doubt, and unbelief continually because I refused anything the devil tried to shout it my ears and vehemently said NO! I accepted nothing but life and life more abundantly for her.
 
So fast forward to today. Mommy had a major breakthrough about 2 months ago. She has been pain-free, has no more issues with her stomach, and her energy and vitality are back 100%. The answer to prayer just came. Just like that. Two years of stored up prayers, decrees, persistence, tenacity and not giving up. My mom truly is a strong woman. I hated to see her in her worst days. It was more than I could bear at times. But she is alive and well and now she will continue to live healthy as God ordained for her.
 
You made it Mommy! ❤️
 
And now Mommy is going to live with my sister in Maryland for a while and she will be back to visit. We are driving to Maryland this Friday. My mission and purpose for this season are complete. God proved Himself faithful. We are amazed at how God provided a simple solution for Mommy and the right therapy she needed specifically for her, divinely prescribed from heaven and straight from the tree of life. It truly is a miracle. My faith has soared and the best outcome that could have happened is now a reality for my Mommy. Persistence has paid off. Prayer has paid off. Faith has paid off. God heard my cries. God heard my Mommy’s cries.
 
I will miss you greatly Mommy but I know you will be in good hands and I look forward to visiting soon. Mommy leaves this weekend as we will attend my sister’s wedding and then we drive back home as Mommy will stay there. I couldn’t be happier with the final outcome. She is living proof of God’s love, His faithfulness, and a strong will to love. I am in tears at this point writing this. 😭
 
So many of you followed the journey and continued to pray for Mommy and even adopted her as your own Mommy. I have not been present on FB as much for many reasons but this is one of them. I just had things to accomplish. And MISSION ACCOMPLISHED it is!
 
We are all doing well at home and I am ecstatic that Mommy is just fine. To see that smile on her face and that spark of life in her eyes is my reward. We serve a God of resurrection and it was the only outcome I would accept. And God granted it. I love you, Mommy! Forever! 💕😘 Thank you, Lord, for your love, faithfulness, and strength. You came through for me….again. (And for Mommy) And I love you! 💕
 
Reeni Mederos

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