What is Valium?

Valium is a prescription medication that treats anxiety and seizures. It is a benzodiazepine, which is a class of drugs that act as central nervous system depressants. They work by slowing down the activity of the brain and nerves. Valium is available for oral administration as tablets containing 2 mg, 5 mg, or 10 mg diazepam.

What’s the Difference Between a Sedative and Tranquilizer?

Sedatives and tranquilizers are similar drug types, promoting sleep and calm respectively. Some drugs are classified as both. Tranquilizers are more likely to be abused for the purpose of getting high. Unfortunately, substance misuse extends to prescription medications. In 2019, about 1.4 million people between the ages of 18 and 25 misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives.

Sedatives: 

  • Barbiturates
  • Benzodiazepine
  • Eszopiclone (Lunesta)
  • Zolpidem (Ambien)
  • Flurazepam
  • Temazepam
  • Triazolam
  • Zaleplon

Prescription Tranquilizers: 

  • Alprazolam
  • Benzodiazepine
  • Clonazepam (Klonopin)
  • Diazepam (Valium)
  • Lorazepam

Can You Become Addicted to Valium?

Yes, Valium is addictive. People who use Valium can develop a tolerance to it, which means they need to take larger doses to achieve the desired effect. Tolerance can lead to dependence and addiction. Signs of Valium addiction include using the drug for longer periods of time or in higher doses than prescribed, difficulty ending the use of the drug, and continued use despite negative consequences.

How Addictive is Valium?

Valium is a highly addictive drug. People who are addicted to Valium may need to take higher and higher doses of the drug to get the desired effect. Valium withdrawal can be difficult and uncomfortable, and people may experience severe withdrawal symptoms if they try to stop taking the drug suddenly. If you or someone you know is struggling with Valium addiction, please seek help from a qualified professional.

What Is Valium Addiction?

Addiction to Valium can begin as soon as someone starts taking the drug. The person may start to feel a need to take more and more of the drug to get the desired effect. As tolerance develops, the person may start to feel withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop taking Valium. Withdrawal symptoms can include anxiety, insomnia, nausea, and seizures. 

Addiction is a chronic, relapsing disease that is characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences. The causes of Valium addiction can vary depending on the tolerance that the person has for the drug. Some people may be more susceptible to substance abuse because of their genes, while other people may develop an addiction after taking Valium for a medical condition.

How Does Valium Addiction Impact the Brain?

Valium addiction alters the way the brain functions. It changes how the brain responds to pleasure and pain signals. The person may no longer be able to feel pleasure from activities that they used to enjoy, such as spending time with friends or family, going to work, or participating in hobbies. The person may start to feel that they need Valium just to feel normal.

What are the Symptoms of Valium Addiction?

The symptoms of Valium addiction can vary depending on the severity of the addiction. Some common symptoms include:

  • Stealing, forging, or selling prescriptions
  • Using Valium more often or in higher doses than prescribed
  • Taking Valium for reasons other than prescribed, such as to get high
  • Continuing to misuse Valium despite negative consequences, such as relationship problems or issues at work
  • Mood swings, hostility, unusual sleeping habits, and poor decision-making

Also, doctor shopping or seeing an excessive number of medical professionals may be signs of prescription drug abuse. Individuals who suffer from prescription drug abuse usually request early refills or “lose” prescriptions until a doctor grows suspicious and stops writing them.

The Impact of Valium Addiction

Valium addiction can lead to a number of serious consequences, including relationship problems, financial difficulties, job loss, and legal problems. This addiction can also lead to health problems such as liver damage, heart problems, and seizures.

An increased risk of congenital malformations and other developmental abnormalities associated with the use of benzodiazepine drugs during pregnancy has been suggested. There may also be non-teratogenic risks associated with the use of benzodiazepines during pregnancy. 

There have been reports of neonatal flaccidity, respiratory and feeding difficulties, and hypothermia in children born to mothers who have been receiving benzodiazepines late in pregnancy. In addition, children born to mothers receiving benzodiazepines on a regular basis late in pregnancy may be at some risk of experiencing withdrawal symptoms during the postnatal period.

If you or someone you know is struggling with Valium abuse, please seek help from a qualified professional here at our New Jersey rehab center.

What are the Long-term Effects of Valium Addiction?

The long-term effects of Valium addiction can be very serious. Some of the potential long-term effects of this substance use disorder include liver damage, heart problems, and seizures. If you or someone you know is struggling with Valium abuse, please seek help from a qualified professional.

What are Some of the Withdrawal Symptoms of Valium Addiction?

Withdrawal symptoms from Valium can be both mental and physical. They can include:

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Panic attacks
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Muscle pain and cramps
  • Sweating
  • Seizures

Benzodiazepines can be addictive, and tolerance develops quickly, so it is important to take them only as prescribed by a doctor. If you or someone you know is struggling with Valium abuse, there are treatment options available. Treatment typically begins with detoxification followed by counseling and support groups. If you are struggling with Valium addiction, please seek help today.

How Long Does it Take to Withdraw from Valium?

The length of time it takes to withdraw from Valium depends on a number of factors, including how long you have been taking the drug, the dosage you have been taking, and any other medical conditions you may have. Most people will start to experience withdrawal symptoms within 24-48 hours after their last dose. 

Symptoms can peak within 3-5 days and typically resolve within 7-10 days. However, some people may experience lingering symptoms for weeks or even months. If you are struggling with Valium addiction, please seek help today. Treatment typically begins with detoxification followed by counseling and support groups.

What are the Treatment Options for Valium Addiction?

Treatment for Valium addiction typically includes behavioral therapy, counseling, and medication. Medication can help to lessen the symptoms of withdrawal and make it easier for people to stop using Valium. Treatment options for addiction are available and can help people to overcome their addiction. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please seek help today. 

The following treatment options are available for those who are struggling with substance use disorder:

Finding Hope at North Jersey Recovery Center

There is no cure for addiction — but it is treatable. If you or someone you care about is addicted to Valium, there are treatment options available. Treatment for Valium addiction typically involves a combination of medical detox, therapy, and support groups. 

Valium is a highly addictive medication. People who take Valium for long periods of time or at high doses may be more likely to become addicted to it. Addiction occurs when people compulsively use a substance despite negative consequences. 
If you or someone you care about is struggling with substance use disorder, please seek help from a qualified healthcare professional. North Jersey Recovery Center understands the challenges you’ll face but there is support for you. There are treatment options available that can help people recover from Valium addiction and lead healthy, fulfilling lives.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Laura Riley

Medical Reviewer

Laura comes to NJRC with 23 years of vast clinical experience in hospital, residential, outpatient, and community outreach settings where she has worked, supervised clinical teams, and volunteered. She has provided substance abuse and mental health counseling, clinical coordination, and advocacy to individuals, families and groups, and specializes in co-occurring disorders for both adults and adolescents.