Valium is one of the most used Anti-Anxiety medications in the world. It is even more frequently used than Xanax and Prozac. In our main article on Valium, you may find a proper description, dosages, usages, addiction issues, and recovery options. This Valium FAQ will answer 20 frequently asked questions about Valium to give us a deeper understanding of how it works in the body, its side effects, and other possible inquiries.
Following are the questions we’ll cover and you can click right to the answer:
Valium FAQ (Table of Content):
- What is Valium?
- How does Valium work in the body?
- What are the available doasges and forms?
- What are the common side effects of Valium?
- Is Valium Addcitive?
- Can I OD on Valium?
- Can I drive after taking Valium?
- Can pregnant women take Valium?
- Can brestfeeding mothers take Valium?
- What happes if I forget to take it?
- Can I take Valium with alcohol?
- Can I take Valium with Marijuana?
- What medications counteract Diazepam?
- What is the half life of Valium?
- What do I do if I’m addicted to Valium?
- What is the legal status of Valium?
- Can I buy Valium without a prescription?
- Is it safe to buy Valium online?
- How long does Diazepam stay in blood or urin?
- What makes Valium so special?
1. What is Valium?
Diazepam is the generic name of Valium. The brand name Valium belongs to Hofman La-Roche pharmaceuticals. It was first approved by the FDA in 1963. That’s right. Valium is a pretty old medication. It belongs to a type of drug known as Benzodiazepines. These types of drugs are used as relaxants. In 2018, Diazepam was the 11th most prescribed medication in the United States with over 6 million prescriptions issued. It is considered a necessary drug and belongs to the World Health Organization (WHO): List of Essential Medications.
2. How does Valium work in the body?
Valium or Diazepam is known as a CNS (Central Nervous System) relaxant. It stops the CNS (brain and the nervous system) from overacting. That is why Valium can be used for many medical conditions. For a complete list, please check our main article “Valium (Diazepam)“.
Valium improves the functions of GABA by making the receptors more sensitive. GABA is the chief inhibitor among other Neurotransmitters. To completely understand Neurotransmitters and GABA, please read our article “How do Anti-Anxiety Medications Work?“.
You may check a lot of medical journals, but they will tell you almost the same thing, “We don’t know how it works”. Luckily for you, we have the answer.
First of all, nothing happens when a chemical gets released into the body. It has to be received so that our brain can get the signal. GABA naturally exists in the body. Diazepam simply increases its effectiveness by opening more and more receptors.
The reception of GABA signals the brain to calm down, slow the heart rate, relax, and shut down non-essential functions.
The presence of Dopamine and Endorphins together with GABA makes it even more relaxing. Dopamine sends a “feel good” signal to the brain and Endorphins create a numbing effect. That’s why Valium can treat Anxiety Disorder, Seizures (Muscle Spasms), depression, insomnia, and even nerve pains.
3. What are the available dosages and forms?
The most common Diazepams are in tablet forms. There are Valium 5mg, 10mg and 20mg tablets. You can also buy a diazepam nasal spray in the market. It is ideal for patients who suffer from sudden panic attacks and epileptic episodes. Liquid diazepams are injectible and for use in hospitals. You may get the details from our Valium (Diazepam) article.
4. What are common the side effects of Valium?
All medications come with some side effects. Valium is no different. However, if you know how to manage it, there is nothing much to worry about. We won’t be able to discuss all the possible side effects here. We have a separate article “Valium Side Effects” where we discuss all the details.
Here are some common side effects when you first start taking Valium. Don’t get too worried, your body is just trying to adjust to the new medication.
Nausea, dizziness, dry mouth, dry eyes, headache, drowsiness, blur vision, lightheadedness, and sleepiness are among the few.
These common side effects are easily handled by drinking some water and reducing activities after taking Valium. However, after 3-7 days, when your body has adjusted to the medication, you may return to normal activities. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery in the beginning.
5. Is Valium addictive?
Only if someone uses it for a long time and frequently, Valium may be addictive. However, your doctor will not say so. Most common anxiety patients are advised to take it before a stressful situation. If you know you are going to work and it will be a hectic day, you may take one. On weekends, when you are already relaxed, you don’t have to.
Habit is formed when you do something regularly at a certain time. You can avoid that. I have seen people use Valium year after year and not get addicted. The reason is that they don’t take them every day. It can be used only on a need basis.
6. Can I OD on Valium?
Yes, Diazepam slows the heart rate. That means you can Overdose (OD) on Valium. If take a huge amount at once, it may lower the heart rate so much that the patient becomes immobile. The heart may also stop. If you see someone having this problem, they should be taken to the hospital immediately while monitoring their heart rate. CPR may be necessary on the way to the hospital.
The treatment is then to inject Epi (Epinephrine), a stimulant, to get the heart back to normal.
7. Can I drive after taking Valium?
We don’t recommend it for the first few days. As mentioned earlier, it may take a week for the body to get used to it. In the beginning, you may be extremely sleepy or drowsy. It’ll be dangerous to drive then.
Once the body has adjusted and you are not feeling that sleepy, you may resume driving and other regular activities.
8. Can pregnant women take Valium?
They can but shouldn’t. Whatever the mother ingests, the fetus gets. Unless the mother and the baby are both experiencing panic attacks (It is very possible), mothers should not take Valium.
Consult a doctor though. There are situations where pregnant mothers may be given a low dose of Diazepam.
9. Can breastfeeding mothers take Valium?
Yes, they can but again, the same caution must be taken. Diazepam passes through breast milk to the infant will get a dose too. However, if times correctly, breastfeeding mothers can take low dosages of Valium as well. And again, these are really sensitive matters and a doctor must be consulted.
10. What happens if I forget to take it?
If you are on a prescription that says to take Valium at a regular interval and you forget your dose, you should continue as usual. That means that when the time comes for your next dose, you should take one-not two tablets. Since you forgot your dose and it hasn’t caused any problems, you are fine.
11. Can I take Valium with alcohol?
You can but highly not recommended. As far as relaxing is concerned, it will serve no purpose. Additionally, alcohol tends to slow the heart rate as well. There is a huge risk of OD. Therefore, don’t.
12. Can I take Valium with Marijuana?
Also the same thing as alcohol. They are both downers, and there is a risk of overdose.
13. What medications counteract Diazepam?
Any form of stimulant would counteract the effects of Valium. Amphetamines like Adderall, Ritalin, Modafinil, and other hormonal stimulants like Epinephrine and Adrenaline can null-and-void the effects of Diazepam. Extremely strong coffee like espresso may also do the same. Some energy drinks can also counteract Diazepam.
14. What is the half life of Valium?
Valium generally lasts 4 hours in the body so the half-life is about 2 to 2 and a half hours.
15. What do I do if I’m addicted to Valium?
First of all, you must understand that it is not a crime. The biggest problem when it comes to addiction is not the patient but the society and its point of view regarding addiction. That’s why most of the time, people suffering from addiction don’t come forward and get the help they need.
You must let someone know- be it a family member or a close friend. The next step is to consult a professional. He/she may recommend you to book a few sessions of therapy (CBT) and join support groups in your area. The more open you are about it the better it will be for you.
In severe cases, going to a rehabilitation center may be required, but it doesn’t generally happen to patients with Valium addiction.
16. What is the legal Status of Valium?
Although a versatile medication, Valium is a controlled substance in most countries in the world. In the USA, it is a Schedule IV substance, which means that it has a low potential for abuse and addiction. You will need a prescription to buy Valium from a regular pharmacy.
The UK, Canada, Australia, and Japan (US allies) follow the same set of rules. However, since it has a very low potential for abuse, there are countries where Valium is an Over the Counter (OTC) medication.
You must always be aware of the local laws. People may get arrested for carrying prescription medications if they don’t have prescriptions.
17. Can I buy Valium without a prescription?
Yes, but it is not recommended. First of all, if you are in one of those countries mentioned above (Like the USA), you cannot buy Valium from a regular pharmacy without a prescription. It’s illegal and you will get in trouble with the law.
We also mentioned above that there are countries where it’s only an OTC. Thanks to the internet, you can order Diazepam online from those countries. However, you must find a reputable online pharmacy. We have a list of pharmacies that you can trust but remember the local laws. You can buy Valium online without a prescription at your own risk.
It is not always safe to order medication over the internet. Sure it is a lot easier, but you can never be sure of the quality. Yet, if you do order, make sure that the pharmacy is international (outside your country’s jurisdiction). I have seen a lot of online pharmacies that offer Valium for sale without prescriptions and US-to-US delivery. That can’t be legal- a big no-no.
Related: 5 best Online Pharmacies 2021
18. How long does Diazepam stay in the blood and urine?
It depends on the patient’s age, diet, and food habits. On average, traces of Diazepam can be found for a weak (7 days).
19. Will it show on a drug test results?
Yes, any benzodiazepines (Valium, Xanax, Ativan, Clonazepam) will show on a drug test if the patient took it less than 7 days before the test. Thse are the general tests using test kits. A thorough testing may also reveal traces even after 3 months.
20. What makes Valium so special?
If you ignore the fact that it is a controlled substance, Valium has lots of uses. Aside from anxiety and panic attacks, it can treat seizeurs, muscle spasms, and epilepsies. It can be a treatment for insomnia and high blood pressure. Doctors often use it as a pre-op (Preparation before surgery) medication, which calms the patient down before anesthetics are injected.
Ironically, although it has some addiction potential, it is itself and anti-addiction medication. It treats withdrawal symptoms from other drugs, alcohol addiction, and smoking.
There you have it. 20 Frequently asked questions and answers as your Valium FAQ. We hope we have answered all of them. If you still have more questions, you can directly ask in the comment section below, and we’ll reply as soon as possible.