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Information about Valium (Diazepam)

Valium - Diazepam General Information

Valium (diazepam) is a benzodiazepine (ben-zoe-dye-AZE-eh-peens). Diazepam affects chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause anxiety.

Valium is used to treat anxiety disorders, alcohol withdrawal symptoms, or muscle spasms. Valium is sometimes used with other medications to treat seizures.

Valium may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Do not use Xanax if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Do not use Xanax if you are allergic to alprazolam or to other benzodiazepines. Do not drink alcohol while taking Xanax. This medication can increase the effects of alcohol. Xanax may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person for whom it was prescribed.

Valium - Diazepam Dosage and Administration

Dosage should be individualized for maximum beneficial effect. While the usual daily dosages given below will meet the needs of most patients, there will be some who may require higher doses. In such cases dosage should be increased cautiously to avoid adverse effects.

For anxiety:

Adults — 2 to 10 mg two to four times a day.

Children 6 months of age and older — Dose is based on body weight or size and must be determined by your doctor.

Children younger than 6 months of age — Use is not recommended.

Older adults — 2 to 2.5 mg one or two times a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.

For sedation during withdrawal from alcohol:

Adults — At first, 10 mg three or four times a day. Your doctor will set up a schedule that will gradually decrease your dose.

Children — Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

For control of seizures:

Adults — 2 to 10 mg two to four times a day.

Children 6 months of age and older — Dose is based on body weight or size and must be determined by your doctor.

Children younger than 6 months of age — Use is not recommended.

Older adults — 2 to 2.5 mg one or two times a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.

For relaxing muscles:

Adults — 2 to 10 mg three or four times a day.

Children 6 months of age and older — Dose is based on body weight or size and must be determined by your doctor.

Children younger than 6 months of age — Use is not recommended.

Older adults — 2 to 2.5 mg one or two times a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.

Valium - Diazepam Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Valium: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • confusion, hallucinations, unusual thoughts or behavior;

  • unusual risk-taking behavior, decreased inhibitions, no fear of danger;

  • depressed mood, thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself;

  • hyperactivity, agitation, aggression, hostility;

  • new or worsening seizures;

  • weak or shallow breathing;

  • a feeling like you might pass out;

  • muscle twitching, tremor;

  • loss of bladder control; or

  • little or no urinating.

Common Valium side effects may include:

  • memory problems;

  • drowsiness, tired feeling;

  • dizziness, spinning sensation;

  • feeling restless or irritable;

  • muscle weakness;

  • nausea, constipation;

  • drooling or dry mouth, slurred speech;

  • blurred vision, double vision;

  • mild skin rash, itching; or

  • loss of interest in sex.