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The Benzodiazepines

Medication Family

By

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.

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