How Long Does Klonopin/Clonazepam Stay in Your System?

In today’s busy and hectic world, the desire to bring peace and tranquility to your life is overwhelming. While many people turn to activities such as yoga or meditation, others turn to drugs like clonazepam to calm their minds. Clonazepam, the generic form of Klonopin, is a prescription drug commonly prescribed to manage panic, anxiety and seizure disorders. Klonopin belongs to the benzodiazepine class of drugs, a broad group of central nervous system depressants that includes Valium, Xanax, Ativan, and Restoril. Prescriptions for Klonopin and clonazepam are widely filled across the United States. In fact, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) estimates that in 2011, nearly 27 million clonazepam prescriptions were filled in the US. Clonazepam is a schedule IV controlled substance meaning that when used correctly, it proves medical benefits. Although it has less potential for misuse than other drugs, such as OxyContin or Vicodin, there’s still a potential for misuse, dependence, and addiction.
how long does klonopin stay in your system
Clonazepam is a benzodiazepine, which is a broad group of central nervous system depressants. Clonazepam is sold under the brand name Klonopin.

When prescribed by a doctor, Klonopin helps calm abnormally active electrical signals in the brain. When the brain is overactive, it may cause anxiety, muscle spasms, insomnia, seizure or other nervous system disorders.

Klonopin is primarily used to treat seizures in people with neurological disorders such as epilepsy. It’s an intermediate-acting benzodiazepine that can reduce the risk of seizure activity for several hours after taking the drug.

Mental health professionals sometimes prescribe Klonopin to help prevent panic attacks or episodes of extreme anxiety. It’s also prescribed to psychiatric patients who are experiencing restlessness, fidgeting or other uncontrollable movements as a result of taking antipsychotic medications.

Klonopin typically isn’t prescribed for the short-term treatment of insomnia or anxiety. Medications such as Xanax and Ativan are much more effective for the treatment of these disorders since they start working within minutes and their effects don’t last as long as Klonopin.

As a member of the benzodiazepine family, Klonopin is highly addictive. Even people who start taking Klonopin as prescribed can find themselves quickly progressing to problematic levels of use.

Like other benzodiazepines, Klonopin causes feelings of relaxation and euphoria. It’s these pleasurable feelings that often cause an individual to continue taking the drug. The desired effects of Klonopin typically become noticeable within an hour of taking the medication orally, and the effects last anywhere between six to 24 hours.

Klonopin addiction is likely to lead to tolerance and dependency if use continues over an extended period of time.

When taken for long periods of time, the pleasurable effects of Klonopin begin to reduce as the body adjusts to the increased amount of the neurotransmitter GABA that Klonopin provides. This tolerance results in an individual taking more Klonopin more often to achieve the same high.

Once dependence is established, an individual will begin to experience potentially severe withdrawal symptoms when they don’t have enough Klonopin in their system. This is often why a person continues to use – even if they want to stop.

Misuse of Klonopin can cause even more severe, sometimes dangerous, physical effects including:

  • Rashes or hives
  • Central nervous system depression
  • Respiratory difficulty
  • Seizures
Anyone who takes more than the recommended dose of Klonopin or takes the recommended dose too frequently is at risk of overdosing on Klonopin. There are several risk factors that increase the likelihood of overdose including using multiple drugs, other psychiatric illnesses, and addiction.

Symptoms of a Klonopin overdose include:

  • Drowsiness or extreme fatigue
  • Confusion, agitation, anxiety and mood changes
  • Dizziness
  • Slurred speech
  • Amnesia
  • Blurry vision
  • Stupor or unresponsiveness
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Hallucinations
  • Lack of coordination
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Vomiting

If you or someone you know experiences these symptoms after taking Klonopin, call 911 immediately.

Many people who are thinking of getting sober wonder how long Klonopin will stay in their system. To determine how long it will remain in your system after your final dose, it’s important to consider the half-life of Klonopin’s active ingredient, clonazepam.

Clonazepam has a long elimination half-life. Elimination half-life refers to how long it takes for half of a single dose of a drug to leave the body. For clonazepam, its elimination half-life ranges from 30 to 40 hours. This means that it will take between one to two days for just 50% of Klonopin to leave your system.

Based on the estimate of clonazepam’s 30 to 40-hour half-life, Klonopin is likely to stay in your system for approximately six to nine days after you’re your final dose. It’s worth noting, however, that some medical professionals suggest that clonazepam has a wider ranging half-life of 18 to 60 hours. If this is the case, it can take anywhere from four to 14 days to completely leave your system.

As clonazepam is metabolized in the liver, it forms the metabolite known as “7-aminoclonazepam.” Most medical professionals believe that the half-life of 7-aminoclonazepam is either shorter or similar to that of clonazepam. For this reason, your body should clear Klonopin and its metabolite within two weeks of stopping use.

Variables That Influence How Long Klonopin Stays in Your System

On average, Klonopin takes six to nine days to leave your system. However, for some people, it takes longer. And for others, it leaves the body in less time.

Some variables that influence how long it takes for Klonopin to leave your system include:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Height
  • Body mass
  • Body fat
  • Genetics
  • Food intake
  • Hepatic function
  • Metabolic rate
  • Urinary pH
  • Dosage (low vs. high)
  • Frequency of use
  • Duration of use
  • Use of other drugs

Will Klonopin Show up on a Drug Test?

Like other benzodiazepines, Klonopin is detectable on a standard drug test. If you’re taking Klonopin as prescribed by a doctor, you’ll need to bring a doctor’s note with you to your drug test.

Klonopin can say in your system for up to 14 days, and it is detectable on a drug test during this time.

Once a person becomes addicted to Klonopin, it can be very difficult to stop. People who use Klonopin regularly and for long periods of time often experience withdrawal symptoms when they stop using, which is why they continue using even if they want to stop.

Recovery from clonazepam addiction is possible and the first step to getting help is admitting to yourself that your Klonopin use is no longer healthy. It’s easy to downplay the seriousness of your addiction, and many people find it hard to confront their addiction. But it’s the first step in moving forward with treatment.

By entering an addiction treatment facility, you’ll benefit from medically supervised detox, medication management, treatment of underlying mental health disorders, group and individual therapy, and an aftercare treatment plan.

Although recovery may seem impossible, it’s important to know that help is available. You don’t have to go through this journey alone.

Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.

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