Diazepam, which can be sold as Valium, is part of a class of medications called benzodiazepines. It is a controlled substance and should not be prescribed for long periods. This medication has a significant risk of withdrawal that worsens depending on how long a patient has been taking it. Patients need to talk to their doctor about managing their symptoms on a long-term basis without this medication.
Despite the risks, diazepam is an effective short-term medication for anxiety and muscle spasms. Patients in an emergency detox center can take this medication to manage withdrawal from substances. It can also be a good medication for seizures. Doctors prescribe it alongside other epilepsy treatments to better prevent their seizures.
How It Works
Benzodiazepines are a class of powerful sedatives, including diazepam, that all act in very similar ways. Different medications in this class may have different effects when treating muscle conditions and anxiety symptoms, but they tend to use the same mechanisms of action in the brain. Diazepam slows functions in the body. This helps alleviate panic symptoms and reduce the brain function that leads to muscle spasms.
When used as part of an epilepsy regimen, this medication is meant to regulate abnormal electrical impulses in the brain. It also increases the GABA levels in the brain. GABA is a chemical that helps individuals calm down. It keeps the brain from having such strong activity in the areas that govern memory and rational thought. It also reduces the severity of an individual's emotions. Diazepam causes patients to feel sedated, have a reduction in their anxiety levels, and have more relaxed muscles.
Reveal the major uses for this medication next.