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is valium better than ativan for treating anxiety
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is valium better than ativan for treating anxiety

Just wondering if I should ask my dr to switch me over to valium as it has a longer half life
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Avatar_m_tn
Ativan should not be a long term medication, it should be taken on an as-needed basis as it has a shorter half-life and can be more addictive than, say, klonopin (this is not to say that klonopin is not addictive).  Ideally you'd want to look at an SSRI, or SNRI (or therapy!) before you commit yourself to a benzodiazepine on a long-term basis as they have addictive properties and will be a real pain to come off of.

It never hurts to ask your dr. anything.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you. I should have added that I have been on ativan for the past three years. It is very effective, but it seems to be a short acting medicine. I was told that valuim is longer acting and less potent. I have tried a few ssri's and had bad reactions to them all.
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Avatar_n_tn
i personally love ativan and wish i could take it with my morning coffee forever but seems like ....there could be issues but i like it for real does me good when im freaking out but i only have 15 pills  and have taken 3 and tried to cut some in half and destroyed 2 so im down to 10 need a script!
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Avatar_f_tn
Alirght I've been on valium almost a year.. I have some time of anxiety disorder and ptsd.. I didn't wanna be on anti-depressants so I went on valium cuz klonopam make me crazy and forgetfull!! Anywho the valium just ant cutting it and I have to take more than necessary to not have a panic attack or feel comfortable.. Most people can sleep on valium but I barely can.. Would ativan be a better choice for me? I want to ask my doctor if I can try ativan but I am afraid cuz I am a chicken **** lol and everytime I talk to him I get super nervous.. Any comments?
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Avatar_m_tn
As you've discovered from experience, Diazepam (Valium) has relatively weak anxiolytic action. It also does not generally block panic adequately, unless *very* high dosages are utilized. Back before the high-potency benzodiazepines were synthesized in the mid-70's, it would not have been uncommon for panic or PTSD patients to require between 60-80 milligrams of Valium daily (or 300-400 milligrams of Librium). Perhaps more in extreme cases.

Today, Valium is primarily used as a skeletal muscle relaxant, for spasms and other types of neurological conditions. Higher-potency benzodiazepines are now the standard for more severe forms of anxiety disorders. Given your apparent paradoxical reaction to Klonopin, Ativan would be the second best option in my view. Certainly, if you respond well to Ativan, you may wish to inquire about substituting it in place of the Valium.

5 milligrams of Valium = 1 milligram of Ativan, as a reference. Equivalence is important when interchanging the two.

Xanax is another possibility, but it is very short-acting. This gives rise to rebound symptoms, and, eventually, tolerance to the therapeutic effect. This is less likely to occur with Ativan, but it is an inherent risk of all drugs in the benzodiazepine class.

Low Potency = Librium, Valium, Tranxene. These are used chiefly in neurology.

High Potency = Ativan, Klonopin, Xanax. These are the agents of choice for anxiety disorders.

Good luck.
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