Benzodiazepines I: Upping the Care on Downers: The Evidence of Risks, Benefits and Alternatives
AbstractBenzodiazepines are some of the most commonly prescribed medications in the world. These sedative-hypnotics can provide rapid relief for symptoms like anxiety and insomnia, but are also linked to a variety of adverse effects (whether used long-term, short-term, or as needed). Many patients take benzodiazepines long-term without ever receiving evidence-based first-line treatments (e.g., psychotherapy, relaxation techniques, sleep hygiene education, serotonergic agents). This review discusses the risks and benefits of, and alternatives to benzodiazepines. We discuss evidence-based indications and contraindications, and the theoretical biopsychosocial bases for effectiveness, ineffectiveness and harm. Potential adverse effects and drug-drug interactions are summarized. Finally, both fast-acting/acute and delayed-action/chronic alternative treatments for anxiety and/or insomnia are discussed. Response to treatment—whether benzodiazepines, other pharmacological agents, or psychotherapy—should be determined based on functional recovery and not merely sedation. View Full-Text
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Guina, J.; Merrill, B. Benzodiazepines I: Upping the Care on Downers: The Evidence of Risks, Benefits and Alternatives. J. Clin. Med. 2018, 7, 17.
Guina J, Merrill B. Benzodiazepines I: Upping the Care on Downers: The Evidence of Risks, Benefits and Alternatives. Journal of Clinical Medicine. 2018; 7(2):17.Chicago/Turabian Style
Guina, Jeffrey; Merrill, Brian. 2018. "Benzodiazepines I: Upping the Care on Downers: The Evidence of Risks, Benefits and Alternatives." J. Clin. Med. 7, no. 2: 17.
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