These days Klonopin is often taken by people to treat such medical conditions as panic disorder, anxiety, specific types of seizures, including akinetic and petit mal and a few others. Before patients start this treatment, they should get more information about this medicine and its uses.
Its Drug Class and Functions
Klonopin is an anti-anxiety medicine that belongs to a group of drugs called benzodiazepines, and it works by improving the effects of GABA in the brain. This means that its intake affects these neurotransmitters that inhibit certain brain activities, thus, treating seizures, anxiety and panic attacks. The use of this medication was approved by the FDA more than 40 years ago.
Unwanted Side Effects
There are some common adverse effects that are associated with the intake of Klonopin, including:
- Dizziness and sedation;
- Depression and weakness;
- Mild headaches and losing orientation;
- Sleeping disturbance and unsteadiness;
- Amnesia and fatigue;
- Lack of inhibition and confusion;
- Sudden changes in sexual drive;
- Irritability and rash.
Besides, some patients in rare cases may develop more serious symptoms, such as the following:
- Enlarged liver and fainting;
- Low blood pressure;
- Increased heart rates;
- Different blood disorders.
Another important detail is that the intake of all antiepileptic meds, including Klonopin, is associated with an increased risk of developing suicidal thoughts and actions. That’s why patients who take them must be closely observed by their doctors for any suicidal ideas, clinical worsening and other unusual changes in their behavior.
There are some withdrawal symptoms that may be experienced by people while stopping this treatment because Klonopin may result in their physical dependence. When they stop its use abruptly, they may develop agitation, insomnia and lose their self-worth. Moreover, if they take this medicine for a few months, stopping this treatment abruptly may lead to the following withdrawal symptoms:
- Tremors and seizures;
- Vomiting and sweating;
- Muscle cramps.
That’s why all doctors advise their patients to stop taking Klonopin gradually by lowering their regular dosage.
Recommended Doses and Drug Interactions
The right dosage of this medication is based on the needs of a particular patient, and it depends on a specific health condition. To treat seizures, adult patients should start with taking 1.5 mg in divided doses on a daily basis. It’s possible to increase this dosage, but they shouldn’t take more than 20 mg daily.
Finally, Klonopin shouldn’t be combined with certain meds because of possible drug interactions. They include pills that work by slowing different brain processes and increasing sedation, including barbiturates, alcoholic beverages and narcotics. People always need to inform their doctors about other meds that they are taking.