What is Lorazepam Used For?
My anxiety is killing me. Is that what you feel? Lorazepam is the drug you need. So go ahead and improve the quality of your life.
Lorazepam belongs to a group of medications known as benzodiazepines. It treats anxiety and sleeping problems that are related to anxiety. It may also help you relax before an operation or other medical or dental treatment. This is known as a "pre-med". Lorazepam is available on prescription only.
The Uses of Lorazepam
Lorazepam is a benzodiazepine drug. It is approved for treating anxiety, insomnia, sleep difficulty due to stress or anxiety, status epilepticus (continuous seizures), and as a medication right before anaesthesia. However, benzodiazepines can also cure alcohol withdrawal.
Generalised Anxiety Disorder is diagnosed when you experience excessive worry or anxiety for at least six months. Other symptoms include the following:
- Fatigue/low energy
- Feeling tired
- Muscle tension
- Difficulty concentrating
- Sleep disturbance, like difficulty falling asleep or waking up in during the night
Lorazepam also treats irritable bowel syndrome, epilepsy, insomnia, nausea and vomiting from cancer treatment and controls agitation due to alcohol withdrawal. Consult your doctor about the possible risks of using this medication for your condition.
Benzodiazepines, such as Lorazepam, are prescribed for short periods only. This is because they may produce emotional or physical dependence even when used as recommended. Your healthcare provider will assess how long you will need to take medicine with your input.
Do not stop taking Lorazepam without consulting your healthcare provider first. Abruptly stopping Lorazepam may result in one or more withdrawal symptoms: irritability, trouble sleeping, anxiety, nausea, dizziness, tremor, blood pressure changes, rapid heart rate, and seizures. In addition, withdrawal reactions may occur when dosage reduction occurs for any reason.
How Should This Medicine be Used?
Lorazepam is available as a tablet and concentrate (liquid) to take by mouth. Doctors usually recommend taking it two or three times a day. You may take the drug with or without food. Carefully follow the directions on your prescription label. Ask the doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Then, take Lorazepam precisely as directed by your doctor or pharmacist.
Lorazepam concentrate (liquid) comes with a marked dropper for measuring the dose. Ask the pharmacist to demonstrate to you how to use the dropper. Dilute the concentrate in 1 ounce (30 millilitres) or more water, juice, or carbonated beverages before taking it. It may also be mixed with applesauce or pudding before taking the dose.
If your doctor directs, use this medication regularly to benefit from it the most. It is best to use it at the same time each day.
The dose is based on age, medical condition, and response to the treatment. Lorazepam tablets come as 0.5 mg, 1 mg and 2.5 mg tablets. The liquid contains 1 mg of Lorazepam in every 1 ml. The usual dose for:
- Anxiety– 1- 4 mg each day; the doctor will guide you on how often you need to take it.
- Sleep problems – 1-2 mg before bedtime (Lorazepam will start to work in around 20 to 30 minutes).
- A pre-med for adults– 2-3 mg the night before the procedure and then 2-4 mg 1-2 hours before the procedure.
- A pre-med for children 1 month to 11 years – dosage will depend on the child's weight.
- A pre-med for children 12 to 17 years and up– 1-4 mg the night before the procedure or an hour before it.
A doctor may recommend a lower dose if you're older than 65 or have liver or kidney problems. If you take several doses daily and miss a dose, skip it and continue with the regular dosage schedule. Never take a double dose to compensate for the missed one.
Things to Discuss With the Doctor before Starting Lorazepam
- Symptoms of the condition that bother you.
- If you have suicidal thoughts or think of harming yourself.
- Medicines you have taken in the past for your condition.
- If you experience side effects from the medications, discuss them with your healthcare provider. The side effects usually pass with time, but some may require medication changes.
- Any psychiatric or medical problem you have, like obstructive sleep apnea.
- All the medications you are currently taking (including over-the-counter medicines, herbal, and nutritional supplements).
- Any medication allergies.
- Non-medication treatments you are receiving, like talk therapy or substance abuse treatment. Your healthcare provider will explain how these treatments work in collaboration with the medication.
- If you are prone to falls and are elderly.
- If you are pregnant, planning a pregnancy, or breastfeeding.
- If you drink alcohol or use drugs.
What To Avoid While Taking Lorazepam?
Avoid alcohol and illegal drugs while taking Lorazepam. They may decrease the benefits, worsen your condition, and increase the medication's adverse effects (e.g., sedation). Alcohol heightens the risk of accidental overdose with drugs like Lorazepam.
Lorazepam treats anxiety and several other issues. It belongs to a class of medication called benzodiazepines which act on your brain and nerves to produce a calming effect. In addition, this drug enhances the impact of a specific natural chemical in the body (GABA).