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Ativan Withdrawal

Ativan Withdrawal

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It is rare, unfortunately, for most medical professionals to have the first clue about navigating an Ativan withdrawal. Attempting Ativan withdrawal on your own can be a scary thought. Seek help for your safe return to a drug-free life.

Ativan, like all benzodiazepines, even if indicated during a time of obvious crisis, does not have to chain a person to a lifetime of being medicated.

Are you really your Diagnosis?

Alternative to Meds has been the expert on Ativan withdrawal for over 15 years. We have published evidence regarding our success. Underlying issues can in many cases be addressed in much less toxic ways. We find that frequently there were medical conditions, or that the original factors that contributed to the crisis have since shifted, were diagnosed prematurely or even misdiagnosed.

It is not necessary for Ativan users to suffer dreadful Ativan withdrawal symptoms. We have clinically tested and documented many, many ways to make side effects and symptoms fade away without compromising a person’s health. In fact, our clients feel better, not worse while in treatment.   

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Learning About Benzodiazepines

Before attempting Ativan withdrawal it is probably a good idea to learn a bit about the drug’s properties and characteristics, and how you may react to Ativan cessation. For short term use, Ativan is very often used in alcohol detox to prevent some of the risks of alcohol cessation such as seizures, coma or death, making Ativan a life-saving drug. However, longer-term use is another matter that presents other problems.

Every person is unique and different, and some will experience certain adverse effects that can vary from person to person, like intensity, or how long they may last. But generally, after dependence has been established from regular use, every benzodiazepine shares similar withdrawal symptoms. These can include headaches, mood swings, irritability, tremors, other movement disorders, rebound anxiety and rebound insomnia, nausea, dry heaves, cravings, and more rarely, seizures, hallucinations, and memory loss. Benzos can also cause akathisia and suicidal thoughts and episodes of psychosis.1,2

Ativan withdrawal can begin soon after missing a dose, for instance, if a person runs out before the prescription can be refilled. Sometimes it happens that a person is taking the medication more often than was prescribed simply because their memory has been affected and they just didn’t remember they’d already taken their dose. This is one of the more common reasons for a prescription running out before expected. Abruptly stopping whether planned or accidentally can initiate some pretty harsh withdrawal symptoms as described above. It takes very little time for the body to adapt to, and compensate for the presence of the drug in the system, and this phenomenon is called drug dependence. 


FDA and other drug authorities clearly recommend that one only stop taking Ativan gradually rather than all at once to avoid harsh or risky Ativan withdrawals. 

Ativan for Insomnia or Anxiety

Two of the more common reasons for starting a prescription of Ativan are to handle insomnia or anxiety.  The drug causes changes in the neurochemistry that artificially create drowsiness and relaxation.  While it is true that sleep deprivation can be extremely debilitating, the first line of treatment does not always have to be a prescription for a psychotropic drug. There are various therapies and nutritional approaches that can have a positive effect on the quality and quantity of one’s sleep.3

Similarly, anxiety can be ruinous the way it can magnify social, marital and workplace difficulties to an overwhelming degree. But rather than seeking a chemical solution, there are many drug-free options for stress reduction, stress control, and relaxation techniques that can be learned and applied whenever needed. These can be very helpful when attempting Ativan withdrawal, as knowing that sleep and anxiety are manageable in other ways, boosts confidence greatly & removes these distractions.  

Any symptoms that one wanted the drug to suppress will tend to resurface and can do so with a vengeance during cessation. The Alternative to Meds Center has developed a program that is rich with therapeutic aids, exercises, counseling in various genres, and other techniques we teach the clients to help manage these difficulties, which can greatly ease the process of Ativan withdrawal.

Toxicity, Insomnia, Anxiety

Much research has shown a connection between toxicity and anxiety and insomnia. Toxins can act on the CNS, brain, organs, etc. in the body, often having a stimulating effect. Toxins can also cause depression, fatigue, and other unwanted symptoms. That is why the Alternative to Meds Program includes testing done at the very beginning to get a snapshot of toxins that may be present in the body. 

Using non-invasive methods like a low-temperature sauna, chelation, mineral, and ionic foot baths, nebulized glutathione treatments and many others, toxicity can be purged easily and gently from the body. When the body is detoxified, clients often report better sleep, an increase in energy, a brighter mood, better appetite, and feeling much calmer overall.

Feeling these improvements and experiencing a higher level of overall health is a good place to begin gradually reducing the dosage. Through testing, 24/7 monitoring, medical oversight, and many forms of therapies for physical and mental relief, we help our clients to come down gradually and gently.

Additionally, Ativan withdrawal is well-supported through such things as organic strategically-planned meals and supplements that are needed to handle deficiencies and restore microbiome functionality. A healthy microbiome is absolutely essential for adequate neurochemical function.

We also provide individual counseling choices and education steps to learn how to manage and balance life, health, nutrition, life coaching, relationships, stress management, relaxation techniques, etc.  In these and other ways, the process of Ativan withdrawal is greatly softened and made surprisingly comfortable to go through. 

Learn More about Alternative to Meds Center – Call Today.

There is much we would like to show you about our pristine, ultra-comfortable inpatient facility.

Contact us directly, and we will give you much more detailed information on how each part of the Ativan program works. We would like you or your loved one to be able to see the potential benefits to your health both mental and physical when Ativan withdrawal is done correctly at Alternative to Meds Center


(1)  FDA label Ativan (lorazepam) accessed January 29, 2020

(2)  A Comparison of Lorazepam and Diazepam in the Treatment of Alcohol Withdrawal (Stanford University) clinical trial published in 2004 in the US National LIbrary of Medicine, accessed January 29, 2020

(3) “Better Sleep Naturally” published by Harvard Medical School Publishing, accessed online February 10, 2020. 

This content has been reviewed and approved by a licensed physician.

Dr. Samuel Lee

Dr. Samuel Lee is a board-certified psychiatrist, specializing in a spiritually-based mental health discipline and integrative approaches. He graduated with an MD at Loma Linda University School of Medicine and did a residency in psychiatry at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle. He has also been an inpatient adult psychiatrist at Kaweah Delta Mental Health Hospital and the primary attending geriatric psychiatrist at the Auerbach Inpatient Psychiatric Jewish Home Hospital. In addition, he served as the general adult outpatient psychiatrist at Kaiser Permanente.  He is board-certified in psychiatry and neurology and has a B.A. Magna Cum Laude in Religion from Pacific Union College. His specialty is in natural healing techniques that promote the body’s innate ability to heal itself.

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