What is the withdrawal timeline for benzodiazepines?


Quick Answer

The duration of benzodiazepine withdrawal effects depends on the half-life of the benzodiazepine drug that the patient is taking, the length of time he has been taking the drug, and the dosage of the drug, notes American Addiction Centers. Acute withdrawal effects can last between two weeks and several months.

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Full Answer

Long-acting benzodiazepines, such as diazepam, chlordiazepoxide and clonazepam, give rise to the longest-lasting withdrawal symptoms, reports Richard Ries. Drugs with a longer half-life are cleared more slowly from the body. Withdrawal from long-acting benzodiazepines begins within one to five days after cessation and lasts 10 to 28 days. In contrast, withdrawal from short-acting benzodiazepines, such as lorazepam and alprazolam, begins within 24 hours after cessation and lasts one to three weeks.

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