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Diazepam, also known as Valium, is a benzodiazepine which has a calming effect and is used to treat various symptoms.

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Diazepam, what you need to know

Diazepam, also known as Valium, is a benzodiazepine which has a calming effect and is used to treat various symptoms.  It is always best to thoroughly research any new medication you are considering, so let’s address some of the most important questions regarding this medication.

 

What is Diazepam?

Diazepam belongs to a class of drugs known as central nervous system (CNS) depressants.  The way this particular drug calms a person is through slowing the activity of the brain and nervous system.  The neurotransmitter GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) reduces excitability by exercising an inhibitory effect on the nerves.

Is there a complete list of symptoms treatable with Diazepam?

  • Anxiety: Diazepam can be prescribed to help alleviate anxiety, panic attacks and agitation.
  • Insomnia: While Diazepam is sometimes used to treat insomnia, it only works as a short-term remedy at best. It has been known to interfere parts of the brain involved in memory and learning, which are consolidated during REM sleep thus suppressing certain parts of the sleep cycle.  Diazepam will not provide for better quality sleep.
  • Seizures: Diazepam works to reduce seizures in epileptic patients only temporarily. A tolerance is developed toward Diazepam’s anticonvulsant effect within 6-12 months, making it no good at all for the long-term treatment of epilepsy. A similar drug, Lorazepam, is a much better treatment for seizures.
  • Pain: Diazepam is not a painkiller. Some kinds of muscle spasms, as well as restless leg syndrome, are treatable due to Diazepam having some muscle-relaxant properties. It does not, however, provide any direct pain relief.
  • Vertigo: Some symptoms of vertigo are treatable with Diazepam.
  • Dizziness: Dizziness is NOT treatable with Diazepam, as it is one of the common side-effects.
  • Nausea: Nausea is also a possible side-effect of Diazepam, and thus the drug is not used as a treatment for nausea.
  • Depression: Diazepam is NOT an antidepressant, and it is known to either cause depression or worsen existing depression.
  • Alcohol Withdrawal: Diazepam is often used to aid in withdrawal from alcohol, opiates or other benzodiazepine drugs. It is primarily used to control the agitation which accompanies withdrawal symptoms.
  • Dental Work: Sometimes Diazepam is given before surgical procedures to either calm the patient or cause memory loss, sometimes both.

 

When it comes to withdrawal symptoms, how does Diazepam help?

Benzodiazepine drugs (benzos), are the class of drugs to which Diazepam belongs.  Benzos are also addictive, and have their own withdrawal symptoms.  Diazepam, however, tends to last longer in the body than other benzos like alprazolam and temazepam.  This makes Diazepam effective at reducing benzo dosages without experiencing intense withdrawal symptoms.

 

When it comes to alcohol, Diazepam is effective in easing the discomfort of withdrawal, especially anxiety and agitation.  These two substances intensify each other’s effects, however, so it is highly discouraged to drink while using Diazepam, especially when it’s prescribed for alcohol withdrawal.  Doctors will most often work out a Diazepam treatment schedule for alcohol withdrawal of two weeks or less, in order to lower the patient’s risk of developing a Diazepam dependence. You can buy valium from NHS heroes. This is also the reason Diazepam is not prescribed to alcoholics with mild withdrawal symptoms, only those experiencing moderate to severe withdrawal.

 

What drugs are similar to Diazepam?

  • Adderall: This drug is essentially the opposite of Diazepam, considering that it is an amphetamine-based stimulant. Adderall is used to treat narcolepsy and attention deficit disorder.
  • Alprazolam (Xanax): Alprazolam is a short-acting benzodiazepine and is generally prescribed more specifically for anxiety rather than insomnia and muscle spasms.
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin): Clonazepam is another benzo, and its main use is in the reduction of seizures.
  • Lorazepam (Ativan): Lorazepam, also a benzodiazepine, has some off-label uses but is primarily used to treat anxiety disorders.
  • Oxazepam: Another Benzo, this one is used in both the treatment of alcohol withdrawal and anxiety.
  • Pregabalin (Lyrica): This drug is used to treat nerve pain and seizures.
  • Propranolol: Propranolol, used to treat heart problems, circulatory issues and migraines, is a beta-blocker.
  • Tempazepam (Restoril): Also belonging to the benzo class, Tempazepam’s focus is on the treatment of insomnia.
  • Acetominophen with Hyrdrocodone (Vicodin): This medication is an opioid pain reliever, completely unrelated to Diazepam.

 

The importance of being well informed with regards to the nature of any medication you might be prescribed cannot be overstated.  The above list has been compiled based on actual questions which have been presented by either users of Diazepam or potential users.  Therefore, a short discussion regarding the nature of this drug and its relationship to others is warranted.

 

Diazepam is among a collection of drugs known as “classical benzodiazepines,” along with lorazepam (Ativan), clonazepam (Klonopin), chlordiazepoxide, oxazepam, nitrazepam, temazepam (Restoril), flurazepam, bromazepam and clorazepate. While all benzodiazepines are similar, the classical benzodiazepine is more long-lasting in its effects than other short-acting benzos like alprazolam (Xanax).  Though they all share similarities, it is their slight differences which makes benzodiazepines more effective at treating different symptoms.  Examples of their prescribed usage can be found in the descriptions of the various medications above.  There is a Wikipedia page available for a more comprehensive comparison of all the benzos.

 

Adderall, pregabalin (Lyrica), Propranolol and Vicodin are all completely different drugs, and again their uses and indications are listed above.  The effectiveness of Diazepam all depends on what you are taking it for, coupled with any other health conditions, your age and life circumstances.  If you want to buy valium from us – we supply at the cheapest prices. Another extremely important factor in determining whether or not diazepam is appropriate for you is other medications and supplements you may require.

 

Is diazepam better than?

  • Ambien: Diazepam is not the most effective medication for those suffering with insomnia. Ambien, because it is a powerful hypnotic used to induce sleep, is a much better alternative.  It is still important do discuss your needs with a doctor, though, as Ambien has been known to have unpredictable side effects.
  • Adderall: Again, as a stimulant and amphetamine, Adderall is almost the complete opposite of diazepam in its effects and what it’s used to treat. It’s truly surprising how often this question is encountered.
  • Alprazolam (Xanax): See the information above for comparisons of benzos, typically identified by ending in “am”.
  • Baclofen: People have been known to develop a tolerance to the muscle relaxant effects of Diazepam (which means the effect greatly diminishes over time). Baclofen’s primary function is that of a muscle relaxer, which makes it a better treatment for muscle spasms in general.
  • Bromazepam: This drug, while it is within the benzodiazepine class, has a longer list of contraindications than Diazepam, which makes it a less attractive option due to its similar function.
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin): This benzo is used in the treatment of slightly different conditions than Diazepam, so whether or not it is a better alternative would depend upon its prescribed function.
  • Lorazepam (Ativan): While lorazepam’s primary function is similar to Diazepam, its value as an alternative might better be determined through a discussion with your physician.
  • Norco: This is a brand name for acetaminophen with hydrocodone, a pain reliever which has been discussed above, it is incomparable to Diazepam.
  • Oxycodone: While stronger than hydrocodone, this opioid pain relieve remain incomparable to diazepam as well. Although, Diazepam can be used in the treatment of opioid withdrawal.
  • Soma (carisoprodol): Another muscle relaxer, without any properties affecting spasms, used in short-term pain-relief from some injuries. Diazepam would be better at managing spasm related issues.
  • Vicodin: Another brand name for acetaminophen/hydrocodone, these drugs have an altogether different range of effects and applications than Diazepam.
  • Zopiclone: This one is similar to Ambien, however it is not available in many countries, including the US.

What about the side effects?

First and foremost, as is the case with all drugs, it’s important to take note of any possible allergic reactions.  If you experience trouble breathing, hives, itchy or swelling tongue, lips or throat then it’s important to seek medical help immediately.  It’s hard to say whether or not an allergy is present before the first time you are prescribed diazepam.

 

Most commonly, people using diazepam will experience sleepiness and/or physical tiredness which could also be accompanied with weakness.  Also common are lack of coordination, loss of balance and dizziness.  It is important not to drive a motor vehicle or engage in other tasks which require alertness until you have gauged the severity of these side effects for yourself.  Some people also experience side effects which means that instead of becoming calmer and more relaxed, they become nervous, over-exited or agitated.  Some individuals even become angry or violent and experience a worsening of insomnia.

Other fairly common side effects include mental confusion as well as memory problems, such as impaired short-term memory and issues with new memory formation.  Breathing issues have also been associated with diazepam, weaker and shallower breathing can make you feel light-headed or faint. You can buy valium from us online.

Occasionally, rather than the muscle relaxing effects, individuals will get cramps.  Seizures have also been known to worsen, in some.  In fact, epileptics taking Diazepam for an extended period of time start to develop a higher risk of more seizures.

It’s pretty rare to see the more serious side effects of Diazepam use, especially when following the prescribed dosage. These side effects have to do with the aforementioned breathing issues, depression and suicidal thoughts.  The more unpleasant side effects of diazepam tend to occur after a tolerance develops, which requires higher dosages to get the same effects.

After using diazepam for an extended period of time, your body becomes used to it, which causes a physical tolerance to develop.  Once this occurs, it is possible you have also become physically dependent on it, and thus addicted to it. When this occurs, you will suffer from withdrawal symptoms should there be a reduction in your dose.  These withdrawal symptoms are often very unpleasant and even dangerous.  These symptoms include, but are not limited to, rebound anxiety which comes back much worse than the anxiety for which the diazepam was initially prescribed.

The habit forming nature of diazepam, coupled with the possibility of severe withdrawal symptoms, is why the drug is generally only prescribed at the lowest possible dose and then only for short periods of time.  A few weeks of regular use can result in the development of a tolerance and the onset of withdrawal when use is discontinued.  When you desire to discontinue your diazepam prescription, it will be important to work out a gradual tapering schedule with your physician, as it can be extremely dangerous to suddenly stop taking it.  After tapering off Diazepam, it’s possible that some mental impairment may persist for a few months.  There is a possibility this impairment could be permanent, however this is not conclusive.

Serious, even fatal, consequences can occur due to Diazepam overdose, which is most likely in cases where the medication has been mixed with alcohol, opiates or other CNS depressants.  Severe drowsiness, dizziness, dodgy coordination, loss of balance, low blood pressure and coma are some symptoms of diazepam overdose.

Click here for a list of all possible side effects.

 

What are some of diazepam’s contraindications?

 

Diazepam should never be mixed with alcohol consumption, as both substances act as depressants on the central nervous system (CNS) and tend to intensify each other’s effects.  This could make you more prone to a lack of coordination and confusion.  In fact, mixing Diazepam with any medication/substance which causes drowsiness could be problematic, including sleeping pills, narcotic pain medicine, muscle relaxers and anything else used to treat anxiety, depression, seizures or allergies.

It’s also not a good idea to use Diazepam alongside any other medication, including those sold over the counter, which slow the central nervous system.  Any other drugs which make you sleepy or slow your breathing could also be dangerous.  Some examples of these are hypnotics, other benzodiazepines, opiates, sedatives, some antihistamines, antidepressants, some anticonvulsants and antipsychotics.

Smoking cigarettes could potentially reduce the effectiveness of diazepam.  It’s not clear whether or not taking diazepam with food has an effect on its absorption, although some interaction has been reported with grapefruit and grapefruit juice.

Even valerian root has occasionally been known to have adverse interactions with Diazepam, therefore it is always important to thoroughly discuss all your habits and medications with your doctor before taking it.

What is the recommended dosage?

 

Generally, Diazepam is only prescribed as a short term treatment, so make sure you have the explicit approval of your doctor before taking it longer than four months.  How much you should take, and how often, depends upon your general health, medical conditions, age, body weight and the type and severity of symptoms for which it is prescribed.  Diazepam is usually taken between one and four times a day and can come as a tablet, extended release capsule or liquid concentrate.

All varieties of diazepam are meant to be taken orally.  Tablets should be taken with a glass of water.  The liquid form generally comes with a dropper to carefully measure your dose and mix it with water, juice or some other soft food.  It is important not to damage an extended release capsule in any way, making sure it is swallowed whole.

 

The usual dose of diazepam is 2 to 10 mg, two to four times a day when used to treat anxiety.  Muscle spasms are usually treated with 2 to 10 mg tablets three to four times a day.  When prescribed for alcohol withdrawal, the dosage requirements can be more complex, requiring 10 mg three to four times during the first day, then 5 mg three to four times a day after that as needed, though it’s important to taper off.

Diazepam is typically not prescribed to children, so do not give it to anyone under 18 without specific instructions from a doctor.

When does Diazepam take effect?

 

When taken orally, it generally takes about 45 minutes for Diazepam to start working.

Is the effect of Diazepam accumulative?

 

Diazepam will stay in your system for several days, but if taken every day it will not be eliminated from the body.  It is stored in adipose fat tissue.

What makes Diazepam ineffective?

 

The longer you take diazepam, the less well it may work for you due to tolerance development.  Cigarette smoking will also make diazepam less effective.

Who should not take Diazepam?

 

Anyone with an allergy to benzodiazepines should not take the drug.  Diazepam is also less safe for elderly individuals. There is also a list of medical conditions which should avoid taking Diazepam.

These include:

  • liver or kidney problems,
  • narrow angle glaucoma,
  • severe sleep apnea,
  • severe depression,
  • psychosis,
  • myasthenia gravis,
  • a history of drug or alcohol dependence

Check with your doctor before taking Diazepam, as there are other factors which can affect how you will react to this medication.

Why should neonates and the elderly avoid diazepam?

 

Diazepam is processed much more slowly in the elderly, which makes them far more sensitive to it.  The risks of confusion, memory loss, falls, sleep apnea and cardiac arrest are also increased in elderly patients.  Therefore, should an elderly person be prescribed diazepam at all, it will be in much lower dosages for much shorter periods of time.

Diazepam is not recommended for people under 18, and is only prescribed to them in very specific circumstances.  It is unknown whether or not it is safe for infants.

What about pregnant and breastfeeding women?

 

Taking diazepam during pregnancy can have harmful side effects on the fetus, because it is easily taken up by the placenta.  Cases of “floppy infant syndrome” and benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms have been reported when women who are pregnant ingest this drug.  In addition to this, Diazepam can be passed into breast milk where it may harm an infant.  This drug carries a pregnancy category of D, which means it shows “positive evidence of risk.”

Should I drive on diazepam?

 

Diazepam causes drowsiness, which makes it extremely unsafe to operate a vehicle while under its influence.

Is diazepam safe for flying?

 

People with a fear of flying have been prescribed diazepam for flights, but they should stick to a small dose.  Usually enough to calm the anxiety, but not enough to make you too out of it.

Who discovered diazepam?

 

Diazepam is a synthetic drug, not a naturally occurring substance, thus it was created and not discovered.  A Jewish American chemist named Leo Sternbach is the first one to have created diazepam.

Who manufactures and sells Diazepam?

 

In 1963, Valium was the first form of diazepam made by the Hoffman-La Roche pharmaceutical company.  When the patent expired in 1985, generic versions of diazepam were made widely available around the world by various pharmaceutical companies.  Another popular brand name for Diazepam is Valrelease.

 

What is the best brand of Diazepam?

 

As long as any of the over 500 brands available contain the same amount of diazepam, and are of high quality, there should not be any real difference between them.

Is it a controlled substance?

 

Due to its habit forming nature, diazepam is a controlled substance.  Valium abuse is actually pretty common, as people will take it recreationally or continue to take it much longer than prescribed.  Many become addicted to diazepam.  In most countries, this medication is only available with a prescription.

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