What Is Ativan? How Does Ativan (Lorazepam) Work?

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Ativan belongs to the group of drugs called benzodiazepines used for treating anxiety, and both of them are equally effective for this matter. It also has a  variation known as Lorazepam. The main differences between both of the drugs are that Lorazepam displays its effects faster but for a shorter duration of around four to six hours whereas, Ativan manifests its effects slowly and for a longer duration of around 8 hours.

The performance-impairing and sedative effects may occur quite sooner with Lorazepam, but disappear quickly in the case of Ativan. Activity of Lorazepam is largely affected by race for example people belonging to Asia achieve higher concentrations of the drug and the activity of Lorazepam lasts longer in them.

Also, one  must be careful if he/she is suffering from any kidney/liver disease while consuming this drug. Whereas, Ativan is less likely to be affected by race or age of the patients. Generally, Ativan and Lorazepam one and the same thing Ativan is mainly a brand name for a medicine lorazepam.

Are the medicines Ativan and Lorazepam addictive?

Both of the medicines, Ativan and Lorazepam should be consumed for a short-term purpose because of their potential to become addictive and can cause dependence. The benzodiazepine medicines which have a shorter half life especially Ativan and Lorazepam are more prone to cause addiction as compared to those with a longer half life such as diazepam.

Both Ativan and Lorazepam affect the brain tissue which reinforces the consumption of drugs and is mainly related to very severe withdrawal signs. Therefore, Ativan and Lorazepam both contain a very high risk of abuse. The direct research on the comparison of Ativan with Lorazepam are not available.

However, various experts have advised that Lorazepam should be taken with caution as it is associated with quite severe withdrawal symptoms. The average half-life for Lorazepam, or the time consumed by the body to remove half of the drug out , is around 11.2 hours. Whereas the body removes Ativan slowly as compared to Lorazepam, with a half-life of 12 hours to 18 hours.

How does Ativan actually work?

Both Ativan and Lorazepam, like all benzodiazepines, like all the other benzodiazepines medicine, affect the actions of neurotransmitters in the brain known as GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). This neurotransmitter chemical reduces the activity of nerve cells and produces a calming effect which improves the symptoms of anxiety, stops seizures, reduces muscle tension, and induces sleep.

Some benzodiazepines my make you feel sleepy, anxiety free, free from seizures in comparison to the other because of the structural differences. You can buy lorazepam online or from a nearby pharmacy but make sure you have a doctor’s prescription.

Ativan and Lorazepam are both approved by FDA for anxiety-relief, and they induce less sleep as compared to some other benzodiazepine drugs such as diazepam or temazepam. Sedative effects of Ativan that did occur are displayed slowly but last longer than Lorazepam in after one dosage. Ativan may also be used to cure seizures.

What are the adverse side effects of Ativan?

Both drugs can cause side effects. The major side effects of benzodiazepine drugs can include drowsiness and fatigue but this is less likely with Ativan than Xanax. Ativan causes drowsiness in around 15.9% of people consuming the drug for anxiety disorder.

Whereas, Xanax can lead to drowsiness in around 41% of people consuming it for anxiety and around 76.8% of people taking it for panic disorders. Ativan 2mg can also impair the learning and coordination and can also cause amnesia for longer periods as compared to Xanax.

The most common side effects of these drugs include:

  • Confusion
  • Fatigue
  • Slurred speech
  • Decreased libido
  • Weakness
  • Impaired balance and coordination
  • Impaired driving skills
  • Drowsiness
  • Constipation
  • Memory problems
  • Euphoria
  • Increase appetite

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