By Kayla Loibl | Last Edited: January 08, 2021 | 4 Sources
Mixing Diazepam and Alcohol
Alcohol Withdrawal Remedies
Treatment for Alcohol Withdrawal
Diazepam is used in the treatment of alcohol withdrawal, but only when the symptoms are judged to be more severe
Withdrawing from alcohol is, to put it mildly, not fun. It can be extremely uncomfortable, and in a minority of cases life-threatening. Therefore it is essential the correct treatment for alcohol withdrawal is administered to the alcoholic.
Alcohol withdrawal syndrome represents a set of mild to extremely severe physical symptoms.
These can be experienced by a person who stops drinking after a prolonged period of excessive alcohol abuse.
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms show up in the first 6-12 hours after the last drink and they peak after 24-36 hours.
If the process is not overseen by a physician, then chances are the person will take the ‘easy’ way out and start drinking again.
The Role of Your Doctor
Taking into account both the severity of the symptoms and the age of the person, a doctor can establish the best treatment. In almost half of cases, doctors choose to use Diazepam to make the withdrawals less distressing.
Alcohol withdrawal symptoms generally respond favorably to this medication.
The management of alcohol withdrawal syndrome is based on several factors the doctor takes into consideration before establishing the right course of action.
The patient’s history is very important
, especially if he is not experiencing the syndrome for the first time.
Also his current clinical status and symptoms are taken into account.
The treatment can vary from a non-drug form to intravenously administered benzodiazepines, which is Diazepam in most cases.
Mild Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms
Lately doctors have come to the conclusion that a person presenting only mild symptoms can be treated using alcohol withdrawal remedies
such as vitamins and nutrients that an alcoholic usually has deficits in. Diazepam and other sedatives do not need to be used.
The following symptoms are considered to be mild
- loss of appetite
All these symptoms are treated with the help of a vitamin called thiamine which is administered intravenously and a multivitamin supplement containing a high dosage of folic acid.
When Diazepam is used to Treat Alcohol Withdrawals
Moderate and severe alcohol withdrawal syndrome is best treated taking benzodiazepines, such as diazepam, either orally or intravenously in different dosages depending on the symptoms presented by the patient.
Symptoms considered as moderate to severe
- anxiety mixed with panic attacks
- gastrointestinal upset
Often these symptoms are treated with anti-anxiety drugs that inhibit the excitability of the nerve-cells in the brain caused by alcohol. The drug of choice for treating alcohol withdrawal anxiety is Diazepam.
The Severest Symptoms
If the symptoms presented by a patient are very severe
, meaning muscle tremors, extreme confusion, convulsions, seizures, delirium tremens or hallucination then Diazepam is administered intravenously in a higher dosage combined with anti-psychotics, anticonvulsants, trazodone or magnesium, depending on each case.
Sometimes other sedatives such as Lorazepam and Midazolam are used, but Diazepam has been shown to have a longer duration of action and this is why it is prescribed more often.
Taking into consideration the fact that benzodiazepines can also cause addiction they are not prescribed for long term use.
Most treatment for alcohol withdrawal last less than two weeks during which the patient has plenty of time to get through the worst of the alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
When alcohol withdrawal is treated using Diazepam then it is best done in an inpatient setting but it is used by some outpatient treatment programs
The Dangers of Mixing Diazepam and Alcohol
People taking diazepam for alcohol withdrawals must be warned about mixing Diazepam and alcohol together.
This is very dangerous as it can become easily addictive
and have some very serious side effects.
Both Diazepam and alcohol are central nervous system depressants, meaning that they can slow down the brain's activity and cause: memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness and problems in coordination.
In some rare cases, the combination can slow down both the heart and breathing rate to the point of death
It is also possible to become addicted to Diazepam. If you are an alcoholic trying to stay away form alcohol be warned that it is very easy to replace one addiction with another. This is especially true of those with addictive personality disorder
Use diazepam only under medical supervision.
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Lead Writer/Reviewer : Kayla Loibl
Licensed Medical Health Professional
I am a Mental Health Counselor who is licensed in both New York (LMHC) and North Carolina (LCMHC). I have been working in the Mental Health field since 2015. I have worked in a residential setting, an outpatient program and an inpatient addictions program. I began working in Long Island, NY and then in Guelph, Ontario after moving to Canada. Read More