What is Klonopin (clonazepam)?
Klonopin (clonazepam) is a drug from the benzodiazepine class of drugs. It is used in a variety of applications within the medical community but is most commonly used for anxiety and for sleep. It has a medium length onset with a long half-life of 18-50 hours. This puts it into the class of long acting benzodiazepines. It achieves it anti anxiety and sedative effects through its action at the GABA-A receptor sites. Its action at the GABA-A receptor results in an increased concentration of the neurotransmitter GABA within the brain which is known to lessen anxiety and promote sleep. Klonopin is the most common name for clonazepam and is marketed by Roche under this name.
What is Klonopin (clonazepam) used for?
Klonopin is most often used for the treatment of anxiety and insomnia. However, it is also used to treat a wide variety of medical conditions in addition to these. One medical condition that clonazepam is also used to treat is epilepsy. This is due to the anticonvulsant properties possessed by clonazepam. IT is used both as a treatment for seizures and as a prevention for seizures. Its ability to treat and prevent seizures makes sense as clonazepam is a downer resulting in decreased activity within the brain. The ability of clonazepam to sooth the brain is what accounts for its ability to treat epilepsy. Klonopin has been ruled as safe and effective for the treatment of epilepsy in children. Klonopin has also found to be effective in treating certain kinds of migraines. It is also often used as the initial treatment for mania in order to stabilize the patient.
Klonopin for anxiety
One of the largest uses of clonazepam is the treatment of anxiety. Anxiety has been found to be linked to low levels of GABA within the brain. For this reason benzodiazepines like Klonopin are the most common methods of treatment for anxiety because of their ability to increase the concentration of GABA within the brain. Klonopin is not as useful for treating panic attacks as faster acting benzos such as Xanax are. It however can be used as an excellent preventative medication for panic attacks due to its incredibly long half-life. Klonopin has also been found to effectively treat other forms of anxiety such as social anxiety disorder. Clonazepam and other benzodiazepines are not a preferred long term treatment for anxiety disorder as tolerance and physical dependence can set in if taken regularly over a long period of time.
Klonopin for sleep
Klonopin is also used quite often for treating insomnia. It promotes sleep through the sedative effects produced from the release of the neurotransmitter GABA within the brain. It is particularly effective in treating anxiety induced insomnia or insomnia caused by racing thoughts. The reason for this is its anxiolytic effects in addition to its sedative effects. Studies have shown though that long term use of clonazepam as a sleep aid will actually often result in a worse case of insomnia than was being treated initially. This is especially true if a physical dependency to the drug is developed.