Benzodiazepines for Opioid Withdrawal

Many people who abuse drugs want to stop but don’t even get past the first couple of hours because of the painful withdrawal symptoms of quitting. After experiencing these painful withdrawal symptoms, the thought of intense drug cravings and uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms can be intimidating for people with opioid addiction. Many may reach for benzodiazepines in hopes of easing the withdrawals, but this combination can have the opposite effect. Learn about the dangers of using benzodiazepines for opioid withdrawal.

Benzodiazepines for Opioid Withdrawal

Can you use Benzodiazepines for Opioid Withdrawal?

Benzodiazepines can be used to manage certain symptoms of opioid withdrawal, but they are not typically considered a primary treatment for opioid withdrawal. Here are some key points about their use:

How Benzodiazepines Help:

  1. Anxiety and Agitation: Benzodiazepines are effective in reducing anxiety and agitation, which are common during opioid withdrawal.
  2. Insomnia: They can help improve sleep and manage insomnia associated with withdrawal.
  3. Muscle Spasms: Benzodiazepines can alleviate muscle spasms and tension.

Limitations and Risks:

  1. Addiction Potential: Benzodiazepines themselves have a high potential for dependence and addiction, so their use must be closely monitored.
  2. Respiratory Depression: When combined with other central nervous system depressants, benzodiazepines can cause respiratory depression, which can be dangerous.
  3. Limited Symptom Relief: While they help with specific symptoms, benzodiazepines do not address all aspects of opioid withdrawal, such as gastrointestinal issues or cravings.

Comprehensive Treatment:

  1. Medically Supervised Detox: Benzodiazepines should be used as part of a medically supervised detoxification process to ensure safety and effectiveness.
  2. Other Medications: Medications like methadone, buprenorphine, and clonidine are often used as primary treatments for managing opioid withdrawal and reducing cravings.
  3. Supportive Therapies: Counseling, behavioral therapies, and support groups are essential components of a comprehensive treatment plan.

While benzodiazepines can be helpful for managing specific symptoms of opioid withdrawal, they should be used cautiously and under medical supervision as part of a broader treatment plan. The primary focus should be on medications and therapies specifically designed for opioid withdrawal and addiction management.

How Bad is the Withdrawal from Opioids?

Opiate withdrawal symptoms may range from mild to severe, depending on many variables. How dependent the individual is on an opioid drug, the length of time taking a particular drug, dosage amount, which drug was taken, how the drug was taken, underlying medical conditions, and much more. Here are what opioid symptoms can look like.”


These usually start within 6-12 hours for short-acting opiates, and they start within 30 hours for longer-acting ones:

  • Tearing up
  • Muscle aches
  • Agitation
  • Trouble falling and staying asleep
  • Excessive yawning
  • Anxiety
  • Nose running
  • Sweats
  • Racing heart
  • Hypertension
  • Fever

Besides the physical dangers, there is also a danger of relapse. Relapse leads to many overdoses because addicts that have abstained from using opioids for an amount of time, tolerance decreases; therefore, when they use again, they have a higher chance of overdosing. With professional detox and treatment, this all can be avoided, where Allure Detox comes in.

Opioid Detox Alone Can Be Dangerous

There is also the danger of those who try to detox on their own to mix other substances to help lessen their withdrawal symptoms. This could be alcohol, marijuana, or prescription pill. Most commonly, people tend to take benzodiazepines or benzo because they think they might be able to sleep it off, but this can be extremely deadly and could lead to an accidental overdose.

Opioids are commonly known as prescribed painkillers such as Vicodin or street drugs such as heroin. Prescription opioids stop the signals that you are in pain from your brain to your body. It is usually prescribed after surgeries or some other pain-related trauma. Opioids can make some people feel relaxed, happy, or “high” and can be addictive. Additional side effects can include slowed breathing, constipation, nausea, confusion, and drowsiness.

Don’t Use Benzos Alone for Opioid Withdrawal.

Benzodiazepines are a type of medication known as tranquilizers. Familiar names include Valium and Xanax, and they are some of the most commonly prescribed medications in the United States. Benzodiazepines act on the central nervous system, produce sedation and muscle relaxation, and lower anxiety levels.

Both opioids and benzodiazepines are sedatives, which suppresses not only your breathing but also impair cognitive functions. This combination could lead to an accidental overdose when taken together, therefore using benzos to treat opioid withdrawal is not recommended, especially without medical supervision. At Allure Detox, we can make sure you are well supervised and taken care of every step of the way to make sure you get off opioids safely.

Detox from Opiates Safely at Allure Detox

When it comes to Allure Detox, we provide much more than the bare minimum.  Of course, we help clients stop using safely – that’s just a given.  Almost as important as that, though, is that we offer clients the foundation for a lifetime of relief and recovery.

That’s the Allure Detox promise: that patients leave our care with more than good health at their disposal. Our focus is on minimizing your withdrawal symptoms to a comfortable level while beginning the comprehensive treatment process that will keep you sober.

Published on: 2020-05-29
Updated on: 2024-06-05