Lorazepam (Ativan) addiction


Lorazepam, also commonly known by its brand name, Ativan, is a prescription medication which is commonly prescribed to treat anxiety, insomnia, and seizures; while it’s generally safe when used as directed, it can be abused by those dependent on the sedative effects of the drug. Relinquishing an addiction to Lorazepam can be extremely difficult without professional help. This is partially due to the often-severe Lorazepam withdrawal symptoms people experience when they try to quit. Fortunately rehab centres like Liberty House are equipped with the necessary resources and staff to help people overcome Lorazepam addiction and go on to live full and healthy lives.

How does Lorazepam addiction develop?

Lorazepam addiction means continuing to take lorazepam even though it’s causing negative consequences in your life. It can develop quickly, especially if you take the drug more frequently or in larger doses than prescribed.

Addiction typically develops in one of two ways: either people begin misusing the drug recreationally or they start taking it for legitimate medical reasons but then find that they cannot stop taking it.

Lorazepam works by slowing down the brain and nervous system, making it a helpful medication for people who suffer from anxiety or panic attacks. However, it is also this mechanism of action that makes Lorazepam so physically addictive.

In both cases, the individual builds up a tolerance to the drug, which means that they need to take larger and more frequent doses to achieve the same effects. As their tolerance progresses, people may find that they are taking lorazepam not only to feel good but also to avoid feeling bad as Lorazepam withdrawal symptoms can be extremely unpleasant.

Which factors make lorazepam addiction more likely?

Lorazepam addiction is both a physical and psychological condition with certain risk factors that make lorazepam addiction more likely. These include the following:

  • A family history of addiction
  • Mental health conditions such as anxiety, depression or PTSD
  • A lot of stress in your life
  • Taking lorazepam for a long period of time
  • Abusing other substances in addition to lorazepam

Do I have an Ativan addiction?

Recognising a prescription drug addiction like one to Ativan can be hard because you may have originally been prescribed Ativan for genuine reasons or believe that you need it for some medical purpose. Here are some questions to ask yourself which may indicate Ativan addiction signs:

  • Do I feel like I need Ativan to function normally?
  • Do I feel like I need to increase my dose to get the same effect?
  • Have I experienced Ativan withdrawal symptoms when I’ve tried to give up?
  • Do I spend a lot of time obtaining, using, or recovering from the effects of Ativan?
  • Has Ativan abuse led to problems in my relationships?
  • Have I given up activities that were once important to me in order to use Ativan?
  • Have I continued using Ativan despite knowing that it’s causing problems?

If you answered yes to these questions, it’s possible that you need help for Ativan addiction. Liberty House has successfully helped many people overcome their addiction so get in touch with us today.

The negative health impacts of lorazepam abuse and addiction

Lorazepam abuse and addiction can have a significant impact on physical and mental health. In the short term, lorazepam abuse can lead to impaired judgement, lack of coordination and memory loss. It can also cause slurred speech, confusion, and drowsiness.

Long-term lorazepam abuse can damage the liver and kidneys, and it can also lead to anxiety, depression and insomnia. Lorazepam overdose is also a serious risk, particularly if the drug is mixed with alcohol or other drugs. Lorazepam overdose symptoms include:

  • Dizziness
  • Weakness
  • Confusion
  • Slurred speech
  • Staggering
  • Shallow breathing
  • Coma


If you experience any of these lorazepam overdose symptoms, it’s important to get help immediately as lorazepam overdose can be fatal.

The impact of Ativan addiction on other aspects of life

Ativan addiction can have a devastating impact on every aspect of a person’s life, including:

  • School: Ativan addiction can make it difficult to concentrate on schoolwork and may lead to poor grades or even dropping out of school altogether.
  • Work: Ativan abuse can interfere with work performance and may eventually lead to job loss.
  • Relationships: Ativan addiction can cause strain on personal relationships and may even lead to estrangement from family and friends.
  • Finances: Ativan abuse can lead to financial problems due to the high cost of the medication and the need to miss work or school due to side effects.
  • Legal: Ativan addiction can result in legal problems due to impaired judgement or behaviour while under the influence of the medication.
  • Social Life: Ativan abuse can damage social relationships and may cause isolation from friends and activities that were once enjoyed.

Lorazepam withdrawal and detox

Lorazepam detox is when you stop taking the medication and allow your body to rid itself of the drug. It is a crucial part of addiction recovery as lorazepam detox will help to break the physical addiction to the drug.

Lorazepam withdrawal symptoms can be severe and may include:

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Muscle aches
  • Irritability
  • Tremors
  • Seizures


For this reason, it is important to detox under the care of medical professionals at a detox centre like Liberty House. Detoxing at home can be dangerous as severe lorazepam withdrawal symptoms can lead to hospitalisation or even death.

How long does Ativan detox take?

The Ativan withdrawal timeline typically begins within twenty-four hours of the last dose, peaks around day three to four, and then gradually subsides over the course of a week or two. However, some people may experience prolonged or severe Ativan withdrawal symptoms as overcoming benzodiazepine addiction can last many months. In this case, Liberty House will discuss with your GP how you can receive additional support after you leave our Ativan detox centre.

Ativan rehab

As Ativan addiction is both a physical and a psychological condition, Ativan detox alone is not enough to overcome the condition. This means that you need to undergo Ativan rehab treatment alongside your detox programme to ensure that every aspect of your addiction is addressed. Rehab treatment will enable you to recognise the triggers and behaviours that led to your addiction and will help you to develop the skills and strategies to avoid relapse in the future.

The aim of Ativan rehab is to provide comprehensive care and support that will enable you to overcome your Ativan addiction and live a healthy, drug-free life. Liberty House offers inpatient Ativan rehab, which provides an immersive recovery environment where you will have no access to Ativan, won’t be distracted or stressed by your normal everyday life and will be able to focus on your recovery. Inpatient Ativan rehab also offers the opportunity to connect with other residents and therapists which is an important part of the recovery process.

The following Ativan addiction therapies and treatments are just some of those offered at Liberty House:


It is important to have a mixture of these therapies because Ativan addiction is a complex condition which requires a multi-faceted approach to treatment. These holistic therapies will address every aspect of your Ativan addiction to give you the best chance of long-term recovery.

To find out more about our Ativan addiction treatment programmes, get in touch with Liberty House today and we will be happy to answer any questions you have.


When you leave Liberty House, our Ativan addiction treatment doesn’t end there. We will help you to write your own personalised aftercare plan to help you stay on track with your recovery once you return home. This includes ongoing group therapy sessions for a full year which will help ensure that your recovery is long-lasting. We will also be there for you 24/7 should you need any support or advice – all you need to do is pick up the phone.

Ativan relapse prevention

Relapse can be frustrating but it is very common (around 40-60% of those who have addiction treatment relapse) and can actually be a great chance to grow and learn. However, if you can avoid relapse altogether then you can really begin to look forward to a healthy future free of Ativan addiction. Here are some of the things that you can do to reduce the chances of Ativan relapse:

  • Identify your Ativan addiction triggers and high-risk situations
  • Avoid places and things that remind you of your Ativan use
  • Lean on your support network during difficult times
  • Stay away from old friends who still use Ativan
  • Attend regular support groups
  • Follow your Ativan aftercare plan
  • Stay connected to UKAT’s Alumni Network

If you do relapse, make sure you don’t get too down or let it completely destroy all your hard work. Remember that Ativan relapse is part of recovery and that you can pick yourself up and carry on.

What to do next

If you’re ready to start your Ativan addiction recovery journey, we’re here to help. Liberty House is a leading provider of Ativan addiction treatment in the UK and our team of expert therapists are on hand to support you every step of the way.


Frequently asked questions

Is Ativan addiction as dangerous as illegal drug addiction?
Ativan addiction can be just as dangerous as addiction to illegal drugs. It is a common misconception that because Ativan is a legal medication, it must be safe. However, Ativan is a powerful drug and when it is misused or taken in high doses, it can be very harmful and potentially even fatal. This is why it is so important to get help for Ativan addiction as soon as possible.
What are the signs that my loved one is addicted to lorazepam?
Some signs that your loved one may be addicted to lorazepam include:

  • Having multiple lorazepam packets everywhere
  • Finishing the lorazepam prescriptions early
  • Going to multiple doctors for lorazepam
  • Increased secrecy and isolation
  • Mood swings or changes in behaviour
  • Loss of interest in hobbies or activities they used to enjoy
  • Problems at work or school
  • Financial difficulties
How can I stop enabling my loved one’s lorazepam addiction?
If you are worried that you are enabling your loved one’s lorazepam addiction, here are some things that you can do:

  • Stop buying or giving them lorazepam
  • Don’t pay for other things they need because they have spent all their money on lorazepam
  • Don’t make excuses for their behaviour
  • Encourage them to seek help
  • Talk to a professional about the best way to support them

It may take a lot of willpower to say no to your loved one, but it can be a huge factor in them getting the help they need.

How long does lorazepam rehab take?
The longer you are able to commit to lorazepam, the better your chances of long-term recovery but we understand that not everyone is able to take extended periods of time away from work and home commitments. Liberty House offers four different lorazepam rehab programmes ranging from two weeks to twelve weeks to ensure that everyone is able to get the help they need.