Diazepam is used to treat anxiety disorders, alcohol withdrawal symptoms, or muscle spasms.
Diazepam belongs to a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. Diazepam increases the activity of gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA), a special chemical that can send signals throughout your nervous system. If you don’t have enough GABA, your body may be in an excited state and cause you to have anxiety, get muscle spasms, or have seizures. When you take this drug, you’ll have more GABA in your body. This will help decrease your anxiety, muscle spasms, and seizures.
Take Diazepam exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. The recommended dose for anxiety is 2 to 10 mg 2 to 4 times a day. The recommended dose dose for alcohol withdrawal is 10 mg 3 to 4 times during the first 24 hours, then 5 mg 3 to 4 times a day as needed. The recommended dose for muscle spasm is 2 to 10 mg 3 to 4 times a day. The recommended dose for seizures is 2 to 10 mg 2 to 4 times a day. The recommended dose for status epilepticus is 5 to 10 mg initially. Diazepam should be used for only a short time, do not take this medicine for longer than 4 months. Do not stop using Diazepam suddenly, or you could have increased seizures or unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.
Avoid drinking alcohol as angerous side effects could occur.The sedative effects of Diazepam may last longer in older adults. Accidental falls are common in elderly patients who take benzodiazepines. Use caution to avoid falling or accidental injury while you are taking this medicine. Diazepam is not approved for use by anyone younger than 6 months old.
You should not use this medicine if you are allergic to diazepam or similar medicines (Ativan, Klonopin, Restoril, Xanax, and others), or if you have myasthenia gravis, severe liver disease, narrow-angle glaucoma, a severe breathing problem, or sleep apnea.
Possible side effect
The most common side effects are tired feeling, drowsiness, muscle weakness or loss of coordination. Call your doctor at once if you have: new or worsening seizures; unusual risk-taking behavior, decreased inhibitions, no fear of danger; depressed mood, thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself; confusion, hallucinations, unusual thoughts or behavior; hyperactivity, agitation, aggression, hostility; muscle twitching, tremor; weak or shallow breathing, a feeling like you might pass out; loss of bladder control; or little or no urinating.
Taking Diazepam with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can cause dangerous side effects or death. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines especially if it is cimetidine, disulfiram (Antabuse), omeprazole, phenytoin; an antibiotic (clarithromycin, erythromycin, telithromycin), an antidepressant(fluoxetine), antifungal medicine (itraconazole, ketoconazole, voriconazole), heart or blood pressure medication (diltiazem, nicardipine, quinidine, verapamil) or HIV/AIDS medicine (atazanavir, delavirdine, fosamprenavir, indinavir, nelfinavir, saquinavir).
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
If you think you have overdosed the medicine seek emergency medical help at once. Overdose symptoms may include extreme drowsiness, loss of balance or coordination, limp or weak muscles, or fainting.
Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.
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