Valium (Diazepam)

The prescription drug Diazepam is a benzodiazepine derivative that was first marketed as Valium. Diazepam is generic for the trade name Valium.  This powerful sedative, first approved by the FDA in 1963, is in the long-acting class of benzodiazepines.

Valium works through binding to the neurotransmitter receptor in the brain responsible for over excitement called GABA.  When Valium enters the brain and attaches to a receptor on GABA it creates a powerful inhibitory effect causing sedation and reducing anxiety.

Common uses for Valium include: treating muscle spasms, anxiety, restless leg syndrome, obsessive compulsive disorder, anxiety, insomnia, alcohol withdrawal and benzodiazepine withdrawal.

Other medical purposes for Valium include pre-surgical purposes to minimize tension and anxiety, or to induce sedation.   At some point, Valium adopted the nickname, “Mother’s little helper,” because of it’s usefulness in treating panic attacks.

Valium can be taken orally, rectally, by injection, or as a powder to be inhaled.  A doctor can prescribe 2 to 30 mg tablets, capsules or a liquid form of Valium. From 1963 to 1982 Valium (Diazepam) was the most prescribed prescription drug in the United States, and is still one of the most commonly abused benzos today.

Valium Slang Terms:

  • blues
  • downers
  • forget me drug
  • goofers
  • Mother’s helper
  • R2,
  • Reynolds
  • rochas
  • roofers
  • row-shay
  • ruffies
  • stupefy
  • valley girl
  • Valerie
  • Vals
  • vitamin V
  • yellows

Effects of Valium

Central nervous system drugs, like Valium, are known for producing skeletal relaxation.  Medical effects associated with Valium are beneficial in treating anxiety, but all prescription drugs carry the risk for dependence.  As with any benzodiazepine, side effects as a result of taking Valium should not be overlooked.

Side effects associated with Valium (Diazepam) include:

  • Loss of coordination
  • Impaired balance
  • Slurred speech
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Difficulty learning
  • Cognitive problems
  • Lack of REM sleep or Insomnia
  • Changes in libido (increased or decreased)
  • Amnesia
  • Irritability
  • Muscle cramps
  • Violence, rage
  • Nervousness
  • Hypertension
  • Tremors
  • Yellowing of skin

Most doctors recommend that Valium is only taken for a period of 2 to 4 weeks.  If Valium is taken longer it can be habit forming.  When one uses Valium for an extended period of time, tolerance develops.  They will need more of the drug to produce the same effect.

Many accidental overdoses have been noted involving Valium.  This is largely due to the fact that many Valium abusers, who have succumbed to Benzo dependence, become unsure of how much to take.

Once dependence develops, stopping taking Valium alone can be extremely difficult.  Never quit a psychiatric drug like Valium “cold turkey.” This is because of the fact that serious withdrawal effects accompany all benzodiazepines.  A number of adverse reactions occur when the body tries to physically detox itself.  Some of the symptoms experienced from Valium withdrawal can be ten times as strong as before administration of the drug, and some can be fatal.

A prescription drug rehab program with a safe medical detox can help you or your loved one get off Valium for good.  Let trained medical professionals at an addiction treatment program safely and comfortably wean you off Valium.

If you or someone you care about needs help with Valium addiction, please call (877) 710-6040.  All calls are confidential.

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