Xanax and Valium are both classified as benzodiazepines, and work as tranquilizers. They are used to treat minor symptoms of anxiety and sleeping disorders, but for all the good they do, these drugs also come with a high risk of addiction. Here’s what you need to know about benzodiazepines to ensure that you and your loved ones use them safely.


Benzodiazepines act on the central nervous system, and misuse can lead to both physical and mental dependency, Healthline reported. They are also known as “Date Rape Drugs” for their use in sexual assaults. Benzodiazepines are also commonly used alongside alcohol or other medications in an effort to intensify the sedation effect. According to WebMD, these drugs are commonly abused and one of the most popular drugs seen in hospital emergency departments.

While these drugs are fine for occasional use, according to Narconon, long-term use can lead to problems. There may also be a genetic component to benzodiazepine abuse, WebMD reported. Signs of Benzodiazepine dependency may include: drowsiness, unsteadiness while moving, blurred vision, poor coordination, amnesia, hostility and irritability, and impaired judgement. Signs of chronic abuse can be hard to spot, and may be something as simple as changes in appearance and behavior.

Getting Better

Unfortunately, for those with a benzodiazepine dependency, suddenly stopping the medication can cause withdrawal symptoms. The symptoms of withdrawal from benzodiazepines are very similar to those of anxiety, and the two are often difficult to tell apart. According to WebMD, symptoms usually develop at 3 to 4 days from last use, although they can appear earlier with shorter-acting varieties.

According to Patient.com, one common way to wean yourself off Xanax and Valium is to switch to an equivalent dose of diazepam, and then gradually reduce your dose of diazepam. This is usually done over the course of several months before the drug is stopped completely.

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