The use and misuse of new psychoactive substances known as research chemicals have increased significantly around the world. During the past 10 years, data show a steady rise, and they do not indicate a slow down anytime soon. It is important to start collecting information and learning about these new substances. Warnings about the substances can help drug users to better understand the poison they could potentially be putting into their bodies.
A majority of the compounds that are being produced and distributed fall under the categories of cannabinoids, cathinones, and phenylethylamines. A newer and potentially deadly new mixture is turning up fall under the class of benzodiazepines. They were initially ignored and received limited attention, but their use is increasing significantly.
Benzodiazepines are among the most prescribed groups of drugs, and early on in their use, they were recognized for the abuse potential they possess. The drugs are linked to a significant number of deaths as a result of abuse, as well as polydrug use. When used along with other drugs like opioids, benzos have enhanced effects as well as a prolonged high. The substances, in addition, can effectively reduce the withdrawal effects of other drugs. Outside of prescriptions, the illicit market online is a rising trend. In recent years, an increasing number of NPS-benzodiazepines have appeared for sale in various countries.
During the late 1990s and early 2000s, the internet led to a spike in designer drug sales, and marketers for these designer drugs referred to the substances as research chemicals. The reasoning behind using this jargon was to show the intent was scientific research so that the seller could legally avoid repercussions of the law. Selling drugs is illegal and carries stiff sentences to those who participate in the act, but marketing it as something that will not be consumed by humans was a way to get around the stigma.
One of these research chemicals is called Flutazolam (also known as Coreminal, MS-4101), and it is a benzodiazepine derivative that was created in Japan. The drug was initially seized in Sweden in recent time, and the spread of the drug is being monitored. There is not much information about the flutazolam other than it is a powerful benzo that induces anxiolytic and sedating effects.
What Is Flutazolam?
Flutazolam is a drug that was initially patented in 1970, but it did not show up in the general public until 2015. To achieve the threshold effects, the drug requires a dose of around 4 mg to 12 mg (milligrams), and it is classified as a short-lasting strong anxiolytic drug with hypnotic effects. The effects last roughly three to four hours. It was invented in Japan, where it has been used medically and has a similar potency level to the more widely known drug diazepam (commonly known as Valium). However, it produces a more marked sedation and impaired coordination. It is indicated for the treatment of insomnia.
Flutazolam is available online for purchase, which has brought it to law enforcement’s attention. There are many safety concerns associated with these drugs, and without testing, it is impossible for scientists, law enforcement agents, drug dealers, or users to understand the dangers of these substances. Adequate testing can provide more clarity for those who purchase the drug online, but it is unlikely they will possess the necessary tools required to test the drug.
Anyone who uses flutazolam is at risk because they cannot know if they are receiving a variation of the drug, if the drug has been altered, or if it was synthesized incorrectly by a novice drug manufacturer.
Signs of Flutazolam Abuse
It’s impossible to adequately determine if someone is abusing research chemicals because their sole intent is to mimic existing drugs. Signs and symptoms of drug abuse vary widely; however, there are generalized signs of abuse that determine a close relation to designer drugs. Though broad, some signs you should watch for include:
- Decreased performance at work or school
- Appearance changes
- Behavior changes
- Increased depression
- Increased anxiety
- Mood changes
- Changes in social life that may include new friends
- Keeping secrets
- Energy level changes
- Increased dizziness
- Increased nausea
- Affection changes
- Financial distress
Signs of Flutazolam Withdrawal
If you are using flutazolam and suddenly stop using the drug, you are subject to experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms that benzos are notorious for. The symptoms can range from mild to severe and depend on factors such as:
- How long the drug was being used for
- The current dose at the time of cessation
- How the user stopped
Biology will play a factor as well considering we all react differently to drugs, and that is especially true for withdrawal symptoms. Signs you can expect from flutazolam withdrawal include:
- Abdomen cramps
- Mood swings
- Increased heart rate
- Increased irritability
- Uncontrolled crying
- Muscle pain
- Rebound anxiety
- Rebound insomnia
- Muscle spasms
- Delirium tremens (DTs)
Benzodiazepines were made with the intention of suppressing anxiety and insomnia, and by stopping the use of the drug, these conditions may rebound and become much stronger than they were when use of the drug first started. Many individuals attempt to stop using benzodiazepines cold turkey but find the withdrawal symptoms to be intense and relapse. If you are serious about stopping flutazolam, you must consider treatment.
Should I Detox From Flutazolam?
Benzodiazepines possess some of the most dangerous withdrawal symptoms of any drug available. No one should ever consider stopping flutazolam, or any benzo for that matter, without medical intervention. Medical detoxification is the first step in the continuum of care and will be supervised around the clock by a staff of knowledgeable professionals. It is the most efficient and safest manner to remove traces of the drug from your system. Detox will always be recommended because of benzo use, but it is critical if other substances such as alcohol or opioids are involved.
Treatment Options for Flutazolam
Detox should only be the first step in the long process of care. While it is a good start, it is not a feasible option for long-term sobriety. It is necessary to determine the root cause of your addiction, and that will begin throughout several weeks of intensive therapy sessions.
During the intake process in detox, clinicians will evaluate and determine the best course of action for you. Depending on your history of relapse and other factors, the best treatment option may be to live onsite in a residential treatment facility. You will stay here for up to 90 days and actively participate in therapy sessions geared toward getting your life back on track. You will go through a period of rediscovery that allows you to understand better why you began using in the first place. Some of the therapy sessions you will attend include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Individual therapy
- Group therapy
- Family therapy
If the staff determines you can adequately respond to treatment outside the confines of on-site treatment, they may recommend treating you on an outpatient basis. You will still attend the therapy sessions for several weeks, but you will be allowed to return home afterward. It is an ideal option for those who cannot take time off work or school but want to work treatment into their schedule.
Get Treatment for Flutazolam Addiction Today
From what we know about flutazolam addiction, it can be extremely dangerous, but it can be more dangerous if you stop taking the medication after longtime use. It is especially true if you quit abruptly after developing a chemical dependence. If you start to feel withdrawal symptoms when you stop using the substances, then it’s important that you seek help as soon as possible.
If you or a loved one is struggling with a substance use disorder that is related to any of the flutazolam, there is help available today. Speak to an addiction treatment specialist at Serenity at Summit to learn more about benzodiazepine addiction and how it can be treated. Call 844-432-0416 or contact us online to learn more about your addiction therapy options. Let us be that light at the end of the tunnel.