B.Sc (Psychiatry Ward)
19 August 2019 - 5 min read
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B.Sc (Psychiatry Ward)
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Table of Contents

Valium – A Medication To Treat Anxiety

Anxiety is a physical and mental state aroused due to stress and worry. A person suffering from such problems in their day-to-day life should consult a doctor as this small-looking stress could lead to suicidal tendencies.

To address the on-growing anxiety issue globally, The Federal Controlled Substances Act in the USA has approved Valium to relieve pressure and psychological issues. We have stated below some information that you must know regarding this drug.

What Are Valium And Its Uses?

Valium is a trademark name for the anti-anxiety drug diazepam, which belongs to a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. The drug works well because it has tranquilizing and calming effects on people after consumption.

Valium is a medication that treats anxiety as well as other mental health and medical conditions. It also acts against convulsions; which certain illnesses or problematic sleep patterns may cause. This drug can also help reduce the effects of some anticonvulsive medications for those who have seizures regularly.

Other conditions that could be treated are:

  • Anxiety disorders
  • Anxiety associated with alcohol withdrawal
  • Anxiety-related to bipolar disorder Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Muscle spasms
  • Panic disorder
  • Seizures

How Valium Treats Panic Disorder?

Valium slows down the nerve receptors in our brains, specifically those associated with sleep and relaxation. It does this by increasing gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter that regulates anxiety and controls other functions within the brain.

This action decreases your feelings of nervousness and agitation, ultimately resulting in a sense of calm. Valium is also known to help lessen the intensity of anxiety symptoms like panic attacks or other anxieties.

What Are The Side Effects Of Valium?

Benzodiazepines are often prescribed to treat disorders related to anxiousness and other conditions. However, all medications prescribed or non-prescribed have side effects that you may or may not experience. Some of the most common side effects of Valium include:

  • Confusion
  • Dizziness and lightheadedness
  • Drowsiness
  • Fatigue
  • Lack of coordination and unsteadiness
  • Weakness

Side effects of medications can often become manageable or diminish over time. If they do not, talk to your doctor about other options that may be available for you.

Potential For Misuse

There are risks associated with taking Valium. People who take the drug may misuse it and develop both physical and emotional dependence on this medication, classified as a controlled substance.

Symptoms of misuse may include:

  • Excessive sweating
  • Seizures
  • Vomiting
  • Tremors

A doctor will discuss how they can reduce the risk of Valium misuse and dependence with their patient. They will review risks, benefits, and possibilities when it comes time for them to take this medication over a long period.

Talk to your doctor about gradually reducing or stopping the dosage of Valium. The withdrawal symptoms will be tough if you do not reduce them slowly.

Valium Dosages And Withdrawal

It would be best not to take this dosage without a doctor’s written prescription and direction. This proportion may meet most people’s conditions, and their doctors may wisely direct others who might have intense disorders.

For anxiety: Patients can consume Valium 2mg-10mg orally up to four times a day or as directed by their doctor.

During preoperative surgery: Before surgery, a 10 mg intramuscular dose can be helpful to combat the surgical experience.

For amnesia effect in the ICU: Patients tend to fear during the surgical procedure, which can be calmed using 5mg – 10 mg dose and the follow-up dose of 0.03 – 0,10 mg after six hours.

For acute ethanol: The starting dose may be administered intravenously or intramuscularly of 10 mg. In oral mode, a doctor may give Valium 10 mg at an interval of six to eight hours on an initial day. They were reducing further up to diazepam 5mg again at eight hours’ intervals or as instructed by the professional.

To treat seizures: doctors often give from 2 mg – 10 mg dose or your health condition to maintain the initial attacks.

You may consume directly by mouth up to 10 mg dose at least four times a day for combating muscle spasms. The dosage can be altered by your doctors as and when required.

For treating epileptic episodes: Using the intravenous mode of 0.15 mg to 0.20 mg is standard, which should not be increased more than 10 mg at a time.

To treat musculoskeletal disorder: Valium 2mg to 10 mg along with complementary therapy can be effective. Do not exceed the daily dose of more than four times a day.

To present a clear picture, here’s a case study on a 37-year-old woman who was consistently ingesting 60 – 80 mg of Valium on daily basis for eight long years. Later, when she suddenly stopped injecting, her health was encountered by various withdrawal effects. The case study was done by Miller F, Nulsen J. Single case study. Diazepam (Valium) detoxification. J Nerv Ment Dis. 1979 Oct; 167(10):637-8.

Warnings Of Valium

If you are allergic to any of the components in Valium, do not take it. Also, if your doctor has advised against using diazepam because of its side effects and complications such as drug addiction, avoid taking it at all costs, even if someone is pressuring you.

Special precautions should be taken when giving benzos to children below 18 years old, who are more susceptible to respiratory depression, muscle weakness from a hepatic impairment, and severe sleep apnea.

Special Precautions Should Be Taken For

Patients who are severely depressed or have any signs of depression and anxiety should be monitored closely. Some may even have a potential for suicide, so it is important to take appropriate measures to protect them from themselves.

Some of the special precautions taken for conditions like:

Breastfeeding mothers: Some studies have shown 9% of the diazepam components in an infant, transferred via breast milk. Due to the Valium half-life, the substances are likely to be present in breast milk for up to 48 hours. It may enable drowsiness and weakness in the baby. If you monitor sudden inactiveness and change in the newborn’s behavior, please stop breastfeeding until your doctor guides you with the proper step.

Older people: Diabetes, high blood pressure, liver or kidney impairment, and cardiovascular depression. The Elderly are likely to face severe adverse reactions when given Valium.

Therefore, until no other alternatives have shown the needed efficacy, then diazepam should be considered. Also, doctors prescribe the lowest dose for easy metabolism.

Pregnant women: The FDA has stated active evidence of fetal risk during pregnancy. It may increase the risk of premature delivery, fetus damage, lower birth weight, improper brain development, or abnormal behavior after birth. The onset use of diazepam during the third trimester may lead to respiratory depression, poor suckling ability, hypotonia, and low energy.

How do you know Valium is being sold by an authentic pharmacy?

Valium, the brand name for Diazepam, is an anti-anxiety medication approved by the DEA that can be bought online from a verified pharmacy only using a medical prescription. Any pharmacy willing to sell this medication without a prescription or under any fake (unknown) brand name is potentially a fraudulent dispensary providing counterfeit medications.

Take Away

This article will summarize the use of Valium for panic disorder. It is not intended to provide an outline of every situation, such as potential side effects or outcomes associated with this drug’s usage.

It provides a summary of how one can use Valium to treat the condition known as ”panic disorder.”

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