Why is this drug recommended?
Diazepam is used to calm agitation brought on by alcohol withdrawal and to reduce anxiety. It is also used in conjunction with other drugs to treat spasticity and muscle spasms brought on by a variety of neurological conditions, including stiff-man syndrome, athetosis, paraplegia, and cerebral palsy (a condition that impairs movement and balance). To reduce seizures, diazepam is frequently prescribed in combination with other drugs. Diazepam belongs to the group of drugs known as benzodiazepines. It works by reducing the brain’s excessive overactivity.
How is this medication to be taken?
There are three oral dosage forms of diazepam: tablets, solutions, and liquid concentrates. It can be taken with or without food and is typically taken 1 to 4 times per day. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any instructions on your prescription label that you are unsure about following. Administer diazepam as prescribed.
For measuring the dose, a specifically marked dropper is included with the diazepam concentrate. To learn how to use the dropper, ask your pharmacist to demonstrate. Just before consuming, dilute the concentrate in water, juice, or fizzy beverages. Just before consuming the dose, it can also be combined with pudding or applesauce. For a few seconds, carefully stir the mixture. Do not save the combination for later use; consume the entire mixture right away.
Precautions before taking this medicine
- Inform your physician and pharmacist if you have any allergies to any medications, including estazolam, flurazepam, lorazepam (Ativan), oxazepam, temazepam (Restoril), triazolam (Halcion), and diazepam, including alprazolam (Xanax), chlordiazepoxide (Librium, in Librax), clonazepam (Klonopin), Request a list of the components from your pharmacist.
- Inform your doctor if you have any of the following conditions: myasthenia gravis, a nervous system ailment that causes muscle weakness; sleep apnea, a condition in which a person repeatedly stops breathing throughout the night; or liver or lung disease. Additionally, let your doctor know if you suffer from narrow angle glaucoma, a critical eye ailment that can result in vision loss. Most likely, your doctor will advise against taking diazepam. Infants under the age of six months should not be given benzodiazepines.
- Inform your doctor if you have or have ever had heart disease, depression or any mental illness, seizures, open-angle glaucoma (increased internal eye pressure that destroys the optic nerve), or any of these conditions.
- If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, let your doctor know. Diazepam can cause pregnancy, so consult your doctor right once if it does.
- Describe to your doctor if you are nursing a baby. Do not breastfeed while taking benzodiazepines.
- Inform your doctor or dentist that you are taking valium if you are having surgery, including dental surgery.
- You should be aware that this medication might make you sleepy. Prior to understanding how this drug affects you, avoid using machinery or driving a car.
What negative effects might this medicine have?
Diazepam could have negative effects.
- muscle weakness
- dry mouth
- difficulty urinating
- frequent urination
- changes in sex drive or ability
Some adverse effects may be severe.
- loss of control of bodily movements
- uncontrollable shaking of a part of the body
- slurred speech
- slowed breathing and heartbeat
Call the poison control hotline at 1-800-222-1222 in the event of an overdose. Additionally, information can be found online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. Call 911 right once if the person has collapsed, experienced a seizure, is having difficulty breathing, or cannot be roused.
Overdose symptoms could include:
- slowed breathing and heartbeat
- loss of consciousness
What more details should I be aware of?
Keep all of your appointments with your physician and the lab. To determine how you react to benzodiazepines, your doctor will request a number of lab tests.
Call your doctor if you are taking diazepam and other medications to manage your seizures and notice a change in the frequency or intensity of your convulsions. You could need to change the amount of diazepam or the other meds you’re taking. Carry identification (Medic Alert) that states that you have epilepsy and that you are taking diazepam and other medications if you use it to treat seizures.