If you have recently come off benzodiazepines for mental health treatment, you might experience some withdrawal symptoms similar to coming off an addictive medication. While disconcerting, this is an unfortunate side-effect of the medication. A common symptom is called Benzo Belly.
What is Benzo Belly?
Benzodiazepines are prescription medications for the treatment of depression, anxiety, and various mental health conditions. These drugs have a sedative effect making people feel relaxed and sleepy; however, they also have several side effects, one of which is Benzo Belly.
If you have taken Benzodiazepines to treat a mental health condition, you might experience bloating in the stomach similar to the way you feel after overeating. Accompanying the swelling, you might also experience dizziness, headaches, and muscle pain. Withdrawal can last months.
Effects of Benzo Withdrawal
Benzo Belly is a withdrawal symptom from the Benzodiazepine medication, but while someone might take it to relieve mental health symptoms, they can end up being treated in a clinic for addiction. Benzo Belly is a form of withdrawal symptom that establishes in the gastro intestines.
To treat Benzo Belly, clinicians first establish the extent of the condition; this is done by isolating the Benzo Belly symptoms and separating them from other possible causes. For instance, Affected organs nearby can cause nausea and breathing issues, prolonging the symptoms.
Reasons for Benzo Belly Withdrawal
Why does a medication used to target anxiety and depression cause withdrawal symptoms like an addictive substance? The answers to this question are not entirely understood, but there is some working hypothesis in the scientific community. One is centered around the gut-brain axis.
It seems the phrase “gut feeling” is more than a simple idiomatic expression. The brain and the gut are linked through a system of nerves that interact, sending signals in both directions. As the brain adjusts to living without this medication, it causes a reaction in the gut called Benzo Belly.
Benzo Belly Duration
If you experience Benzo Belly, you will be interested in how long the condition and discomfort will last. The symptoms of Benzo Belly include bloating, weight gain, and stomach discomfort, even after coming off the medication and starting to feel better. This can be quite frustrating.
When you have come off the medication, and you are leading a sober life, you can expect to encounter Benzo Belly symptoms for a few weeks; however, the persistence of symptoms differs from person to person, and some people have reported Benzo withdrawal for months.
Benzo Belly Solutions
Unfortunately, there is no easy solution to Benzo Belly, the condition is not well understood by the medical or scientific community, and treatments are fairly standard. If you have Benzo Belly, you can expect to enter the Intensive Outpatient And Outpatient – Telemed – Multiple Pathways Treatment, for solutions to Benzo Belly.
A medical professional will recommend that you eat smaller meals, lighter meals, and avoid certain foods that might aggravate your stomach, like spicy foods or acidic foods. Impact Outpatient Program is a one-of-a-kind outpatient drug and alcohol treatment center that offers a pathway to lasting and sustainable recovery.