Ativan is a medication used to treat anxiety disorders and their many symptoms. Anxiety disorders include many different manifestations from social phobias, to generalized anxiety or situation specific anxiety. Symptoms may include, but are not limited to, sweating, rapid heart rate, dizziness and a general feeling of panic. Anxiety disorders can severely interfere with sleep, diet and other normal activities of everyday functioning. Ativan is a benzodiazepine and affects chemicals in the brain to restore natural balance and alleviate some of the symptoms of anxiety. Ativan is to be used on a short term basis only.
Ativan may also be prescribed to treat insomnia and severe alcohol withdrawal or as a sedative. Ativan has genuine medical benefits for many individuals, but is habit forming and should be taken with care and precaution. Due to the addictive nature of Ativan, it is also important to speak with your doctor before discontinuing use. Sudden cessation of Ativan treatment can result in severe withdrawal symptoms and a possible worsening of anxiety effects. Under the care of a doctor, dosage amounts can be gradually lowered to slowly rid the body of any dependency it may have developed to the drug.
Ativan has been classified in Pregnancy Category D by the Food and Drug Administration and should not be taken while pregnant. Shown to cause severe birth defects in unborn babies, extreme caution should be used to prevent unexpected pregnancy while taking Ativan. Likewise, Ativan should not be taken while breastfeeding as it is unclear whether the medication is passed through breast milk to the child.
Individuals who have had an allergic reaction to certain medications such as Valium may not be able to use Ativan as an option. And those currently receiving an Ativan treatment should not drink alcohol as it will intensify the drug’s sedative effects.
Ativan can be an effective tool in managing anxiety symptoms but should be taken under a doctor’s care and only as directed.
Disclaimer: Cliff Schaffer does not personally endorse or support any of the comments made within the writings of this article.