Now we're going to be looking at the drug use classes of sedative, hypnotic, and anxiolytic.
So, a drug use disorder in these 3 classes is called SHA drug use disorder. So, what
is the definition of an SHA drug use disorder? It is the misuse of any of the drugs
that are found in these categories. And these categories are also known as tranquilizers.
The purpose of sedatives is to decrease excitement. It decreases activities. Hypnotics
cause drowsiness and sleeps. And the anxiolytics treat panic disorder and general anxiety
disorder, GAD, and any other nervous disorders. So what types of drugs can be found in
these 3 different categories? Well, you have the benzodiazepines; Ativan, Halcion,
Librium, Valium, Xanax. Now when you are thinking about these medications, they
shouldn't look unusual; Ativan, Halcion, Librium, Valium, even Xanax. We do see quite
frequently, people will say "I was very nervous, my doctor gave me a prescription for
Xanax or Ativan, Librium, or Valium." The barbiturates are Amytal, Nembutal, Seconal,
Phenobarbital, choral hydrate. So these are the 2 different types of drugs that are
found. They are frequently used as anxiolytics, the ones that most frequently are used
as anxiolytic are Xanax which is alprazolam, and Librium, chlordiazepoxide, Klonopin
which is clonazepam, Valium which is diazepam, and Ativan which is lorazepam. These
commonly used drugs are known as anxiolytics and sedatives. Any chronic use of these
drugs results in tolerance and then dependence. And it's important to remember that
people can be prescribed these medications and they can be taking them over time.
I have had patients who were on 5 mg of Valium and then went up to 10 mg of Valium
for what they considered a nervous condition and then they had to come to me in order
to be able to get off of the Valium without having to go through the symptoms of
withdrawal. Because just because a medication is prescribed does not mean it will not end
up being a medication that the person will become tolerant to, that the person will require
increased doses of, and on which the patient may become dependent. Withdrawal for a
person who is dependent on any of these drugs, the severity of that withdrawal is
going to be related to how much of that drug is used and how long it has been taken.
Now, each one of these drugs have different half lives. So, the half life elimination rate
is also going to be letting us know about this withdrawal. If the half life is short, elimination
is fast, that withdrawal will start sooner. If the half life of the medication is longer and the
elimination is slower, then it will take a longer time before we see that kind of effect of