Benzodiazepine Withdrawal: How Behavioral Healthcare Workers Can Help
November 12, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm$59
Instructor: Emily J. Cook, LCSW
The COVID pandemic has made more people anxious about their social and economic future as well as their health and emotional life. With such uncertainty it is not surprising that benzodiazepine (also called tranquilizer or anxiolytic) prescriptions have markedly increased since the pandemic began. Although doctors find this drug class provides effective relief of their patients’ complaints, many of those who take them experience serious and sometimes disabling physical and psychological symptoms especially if discontinuing or tapering off of them. Just as opioids once were, the overprescribing and abuse of benzodiazepines remains an overlooked and potentially deadly epidemic since this class of drug remains largely accepted as benign by doctors and even the public. Additionally, the lethal combination of benzodiazepines, opioids and alcohol must be considered since the consumption of these are also on the rise. The purpose of this workshop is to educate clinical social workers and related behavioral health workers about how they can support clients who choose to discontinue their benzodiazepines safely. Terminology associated with side effects of benzo use including “tolerance”, “interdose withdrawal” and “kindling” will be covered. Participants will learn how to provide awareness for clients using non-medical advice on informed tapers as described in withdrawal literature on this class of drug. Since the benzodiazepine recovery community is ever increasing, resources will be identified for participants to assist them with methods of cessation and other support for clients.
3 Clinical CE’s