Diazepam: instructions for use
Diazepam is an anxiolytic drug (tranquilizer) of the benzodiazepine series. Diazepam action on the body:
- Anxiolytic: reduction of anxiety, feelings of fear.
- Sedative: eliminates anxiety, internal tension, anxiety.
- Sleeping effect: inhibition of excitation in the brain allows normalization of sleep.
- Myorelaxation: removal of spasms, tension in the muscles, reduction of muscle tone. The action is caused by inhibition of spinal polysynaptic reflexes.
- Anticonvulsant action is aimed to stop involuntary muscle contractions (convulsions).
The drug increases the threshold of pain sensitivity, reduces the need for tissue oxygen, eliminates the negative symptoms that result from the activation of the autonomic nervous system.
After taking Diazepam, there is a feeling of relaxation, contentment, serenity, pain and discomfort disappear.
When taken as indicated, in therapeutic doses, Diazepam 10 mg tablet is an effective remedy and is used for a variety of conditions:
- borderline conditions;
- neurotic and anxiety disorders, phobias;
- sleep problems;
- somatoform and dissociative disorders;
- withdrawal syndrome and delirium in alcoholism;
- psychomotor agitation;
- convulsive attacks of any genesis;
- relief of epileptic status;
- relief of anxiety in somatic diseases: myocardial infarction, angina attacks, hypertension, bronchial asthma, peptic ulcer and others.
- relieving muscle spasms in neurological pathologies.
Diazepam is often used in anesthesiology for premedication, preparation for surgery and instrumental studies.
Flumazenil, a benzodiazepine antagonist, is recommended as a specific antidote.
Diazepam: half life
Diazepam 10 mg is usually taken orally before or after meals, as directed by your doctor. The dosage of this medication must be taken strictly as directed by your doctor. Increasing the dosage does not mean faster results, but only increases the risk of side effects. Continuing to take the medication for an extended period of time can eventually turn into an addiction.
Abusing Diazepam medication can cause side effects ranging from mild to severe, such as drowsiness, fatigue, headache, tremors, dizziness, nausea, etc. Mild side effects usually disappear within a few days, but if they become serious, it is advisable to see a doctor, as soon as possible. When taken in extremely high doses, it can slow your breathing and heart rate.
Diazepam medication usually begins to work quickly, and its effects can be felt within 15 to 30 minutes of taking it. The drug quickly reaches peak levels in the body, in about an hour. Diazepam's effects have been observed to last from 6 to 20 hours. The half-life (that is, the time it takes for half of the drug to be eliminated from the body) is about 20 hours.
Diazepam is a tranquilizer from the group of benzodiazepines with a long half-life. The drug is available with a prescription. If you do not have time to make an appointment with your doctor, you can get Diazepam over the counter at our pharmacy. Your doctor, who is on staff at the pharmacy, will write you a prescription for Diazepam.
Diazepam vs Valium
Valium is the original drug. Diazepam is a generic version of Valium.
Although these drugs differ only in the composition of the excipients, however, these excipients can also affect the bioavailability and equivalence of the drug.
The original drug goes through many preclinical and clinical trials. The generic is not.
The plus side of Diazepam is its more affordable price.
Diazepam for seizures
The mechanism of the anticonvulsant (anti-epileptic) action of Diazepam is the result of the activation of inhibitory processes of the brain, realized through gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA): Diazepam, by disrupting the binding of certain proteins to benzodiazepine receptors, causes their disinhibition, leading to activation of GABAergic receptors and enhancing the effects of GABA.
Diazepam for anxiety
Diazepam is a good sedative for short-term use (up to 14-30 days). Always use the lowest effective dose to reduce the risk of side effects. The dose should be adjusted individually. Elderly people should take a reduced dose of the drug.
The sedative effect occurs due to the selective stimulating effect on GABA receptors, in the ascending reticular formation of the brain stem, reduces the excitation of the limbic cortex, thalamus, and hypothalamus.
Diazepam and alcohol
One of the indications for the use of Diazepam is the occurrence of alcohol withdrawal syndrome. Diazepam relieves the symptoms of alcoholic delirium - reduces agitation, calms emotions, has anticonvulsant properties, and facilitates falling asleep. Consequently, Diazepam can suppress alcohol withdrawal by simply replacing it and maintaining a state of "euphoria."
Diazepam tablet is used in people addicted to alcohol, the dose of which should be kept to a minimum. When using benzodiazepines, alcohol and other CNS depressants should be avoided. Alcohol enhances the effects of Diazepam, which increases the risk of side effects. Mixed poisoning with alcohol and benzodiazepines is especially dangerous - it can be life-threatening.
If you take Diazepam during withdrawal syndrome and start drinking alcohol again, it will nullify all the results of treatment and have a negative impact on health. And the effects of these two substances on the liver and kidneys have a toxic effect and cause these organs to malfunction.
Alcoholic beverages and Diazepam are strictly forbidden to combine. Failure to comply with this prohibition leads to the following side effects:
- nausea and vomiting;
- difficulty breathing;
- kidney and liver failure;
- uncontrolled behavior;
- inhibited reactions;
- impaired metabolism;
- in some cases, death.
Therefore, do not combine these two substances and take Diazepam only as prescribed by your doctor!
Diazepam: Muscle Relaxant
Diazepam medication has a muscle relaxant effect due to its inhibitory effect on polysynaptic spinal reflexes.
Diazepam is prescribed for:
- skeletal muscle spasm in local trauma;
- spastic conditions associated with brain or spinal cord injury (cerebral palsy, athetosis, tetanus);
- myositis, bursitis, arthritis, rheumatic pelviospondyloarthritis; progressive chronic polyarthritis;
- osteoarthritis accompanied by skeletal muscle strain;
- vertebral syndrome, angina pectoris, tension headache.
Stages and types of drug dependence
After repeated use of the drug, an addiction occurs, and with continued use, a persistent psychological dependence develops.
The mechanism of addiction to the substance is its ability to increase the influence of dopamine in the brain. As a result, a person feels euphoria, pleasant calmness and relaxation.
Taking high doses of diazepam on its own, over a long period of time, leads to physical dependence, which is manifested by somatic symptoms and neurological disorders. Discontinuation of the drug at one time causes severe withdrawal syndrome.
A withdrawal state is characterized by:
- irritability, anxiety;
- low mood, dysphoria;
- poor sleep, nightmares;
- hypersensitivity to noise and light;
- headache, dizziness;
- cramps, muscle twitching;
- heart pain, tachycardia, blood pressure fluctuations;
- nausea, abdominal pain and discomfort.
The severity of withdrawal symptoms depends on the duration of intake, the dose of the substance, and individual characteristics.
General laboratory tests of blood, urine and other tests shall be prescribed on a mandatory basis. Individually, the drug therapist conducts treatment in an outpatient or inpatient setting.