1. Health
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

The Benzodiazepines

Medication Family


Updated June 19, 2014

Benzodiazepine medications all act to depress the central nervous system. Various medications in the family are used to treat a variety of conditions including:
  • Anxiety - but not the type of anxiety brought about by everyday stresses and strains
  • Insomnia - short-term treatment only
  • Relieve or reduce muscle spasms
  • Alcohol withdrawal symptoms
  • Panic disorders
  • Epilepsy and other convulsive disorders
Benzodiazepines may be habit-forming, causing physical and/or mental dependence if taken over a long period of time or in high doses. Withdrawal effects, especially if discontinued abruptly, can be severe. They may include:
  • Irritability; nervousness; trouble in sleeping (most common, even in slow withdrawal)
  • Abdominal or stomach cramps
  • Confusion
  • Fast or pounding heartbeat
  • Increased sense of hearing
  • Increased sensitivity to touch and pain
  • Increased sensitivity to light (eyes)
  • Increased sweating
  • Loss of sense of reality
  • Depression
  • Muscle cramps
  • Nausea / vomiting
  • Tingling, burning, or prickly sensations
  • Trembling / shaking
  • Confusion
  • Convulsions / seizures
  • Paranoia
  • Hallucinations
Withdrawal symptoms can be minimized by tapering the medication off slowly.

Information on this site about various Benzodiazepines:

Disclaimer: This profile is not intended to be all-inclusive or to replace information provided by your doctor or with the prescription from the manufacturer.

Related Video
How to Choose Pain Medication
Create a Family Disaster Plan
  1. About.com
  2. Health
  3. Bipolar Disorder
  4. Medications
  5. Anti-Anxiety and Sedatives
  6. Benzodiazepines
  7. Benzodiazepines - Medication Family

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.

We comply with the HONcode standard
for trustworthy health
information: verify here.