Seeking Advice on Diazepam Withdrawal

Posted , 6 users are following.

Hi all,

This is my first post. I'm trying to come up with a plan for coming off diazepam by tapering. Up until one month ago I was taking one 5 mg tablet every morning but since then I've taken five doses of 10 mg, instead of my 5 mg normal dose, when I've had a night sweat during the previous night. I get the night sweats from a blood cancer/bone marrow condition. 

I have 5 mg and 2 mg tablets prescribed by my doctor available to me. I don't want to tell him I'm planning to reduce my diazepam. I'm confident I can do it myself with some help from this forum.  

Because of my occasional use of 10mg, I wasn't sure what my starting dose for withdrawal should be so I decided to assume it was 7mg. For the last two weeks I have been taking 5 mg each morning, supplementing that with 1 or 2 tablets of Mersyndol - consists of doxylamine, paracetamol [acetaminophen] and codeine - as needed, to help alleviate the withdrawal effects. I wanted to make as much progress as possible while I had no work commitments in April.  

My plan is to reduce in 0.5 increments once I can live with 5 mg per day. I will keep this group informed as to my progress. I have a 'goal-setting' personality and plenty of will power.


1. How will I be able to tell when I have reduced my level of dependancy to 5 mg and I'm ready to drop my dose to 4.5 mg. When I feel clear-headed and tension-free without using the Mersyndol?

2. Once I start my plan, how far apart in time should I be able to drop the dose by 0.5 mg? Weekly? (I will refuse to use diazepam for night sweats anymore).

All comments appreciated.

P.S. I intend to keep using the Mersyndol as needed to get me through the entire process. Apparently it has no addictive properties and doesn't interact with diazepam. I have regular blood tests as part of my cancer treatment so I can watch things like liver counts, etc. 

1 like, 15 replies

15 Replies

  • Posted

    hi the plan sounds good. i would recomend dropping every month instead of every week though, i tryed every week and after 3 weeks it hit me like a train... couldnt hold a sentance together, couldnt make eye contact and a general geeling of hell so i unfortunately had to up my dose back up to 8mg per day... which i intend to stay on for at least 6 months before going back down to 7mg per day.

    i wish you all the best and will follow this thread to see how you do.

    GOOD LUCK smile

    • Posted

      Luke 78, thanks for your advice to drop three-weekly instead of weekly.

      I would really like to lower my dose as quickly as possible. The other way to go is not to use a fixed time but drop the dose when I feel I'm ready to. I would love to have a list of criteria to use to judge my readiness. Suggestions anyone?

    • Posted

      hi i tryed the drop as quickly as you can method and beleave me when o say it will catch up with you and it will knock you for six. i seriously recomend dropping as slowly as possable after i got down to 4mg per day i didnt know if i was coming or going and went back up in dose now i am (and my gp agrees) going to drop very slowly and in my own time... its always best to try thexway you want and see how your body adapts... would beca shame for you to have to go through same as me then have to go back up in dose so i still recomend taking your time and wait till you get use to each dose.
  • Posted

    Luke 78 suggested I drop three-weekly instead of weekly. I may well follow it, but I would really like to lower my dose as quickly as possible.

    The other way to go is not to use a fixed time but to drop the dose when I feel I'm ready to. I would love to have a list of criteria to use to judge my readiness for a dose drop based on how I feel. Suggestions anyone?

  • Posted

    Hey, I found that the best way to withdraw is progressively. For me, it was 0,5mg every 2 weeks. I used and "alternating method" which consist of this:

    Week 1: 5mg to 4 mg  (3x5mg + 4x4mg) 

    Monday: 5mg

    T: 4 mg

    W 5 mg

    T 4 mg

    F 5 mg,

    S 4 mg

    S 4 mg

    Week 2 - If week one was really hard, keep the same ratio (3x5mg and 4x4mg) But if you feel relatively good and confident - make it 2 or 1x5mg and 5-6x 4mg

    Make this until you feel stable. You will know when your stable. 

    Week 3 - start tapering again but this time 3-4x 4mg and 3-4x3mg or 3,5 mg as you want. If you feel like a full mg is too much to go trough, well taper more slowly (0,5). 

    My doc told me to do use this method, since it is less drastic. Ask yours what he thinks about it!

    Keep up smile


    • Posted

      Always make sure your stable before tapering down again. It will be easier this ways
  • Posted

    Week 0

    The aim of this week was to reduce my diazepam doseage from to 5 mg. It was successful. 'unknown' was estimated to be an average of 7 mg per day because I always took 5 mg in the morning but I sometimes added 7 or 10 mg to overcome the detrimental effects of occasional night sweats on my clear-headedness and back pain. Friday was a really tough day after a night sweat and refusing to use any additional diazepam to alleviate the symptoms. Mersyndol helped me through this but it wasn't easy sticking to 5 mg for this week.

    I just took my first dose of 4.5 mg to begin Week 1 and hope to stay on that and drop 0.5 mg each Monday. Mersyndol is on standby if needed to assist me in achieving this goal.

    Wish me luck in the upcoming Week 1. I feel confident.

    Best of luck to others implementing their plans.


  • Posted

    Week 1

    Made it! Just, but had a few bad days, including today. Some night sweats but not as withdrawal symptoms. I get them anyway. Mersyndol helped again but I refused to take more than two doses of two tablets in a day (max daily dose is 4).. I just took my first dose of 4 mg to begin Week 2. Best of luck to others withdrawing..

    • Posted

      well done. keep up the good work. can i ask what is mersyndol and what is it prescibed for? im stuck on 4 x 2mg of valium a day and if i can ask doctor for something to help me on my next drop... im finding it very hard now especially with work.
    • Posted

      HI Luke

      Just googled mersyndol and I think its the same as the OTC syndol, which is paracetamol, coedeine and a sedating anti-histamine.  Its dangerous to take it too regularly as it can lead to codeine dependence, which is what happened to me.  I wopuldn't recomend it unless it is prescribed by your gp


      Lizzie xxx

    • Posted

      Thanks Luke.

      Lizzie has answered your question. Her description of Mersyndol is correct.

    • Posted

      Thanks Lizzie.

      It's the calmative ('sedating anti-histamine' to use your words) that I was after. It's called Doxylamine. I don't intend to use Mersyndol after I get off diazepam (8 weeks if I stick to my plan). The paracetamol and codeine components are helpful to me also for back pain issues I have. 

    • Posted


      Mersyndol will make you drowzy so whether you consider using it to help you drop your dose further might depend on your type of work. I would suggest you don't risk it if your job involves the use dangerous machinery, driving, etc.

      I resume working next week but my work is sedentary and being a bit drowsy is not too much of a problem - not dangerous, anyway. If you want to use Mersyndol, I suggest first try it on a non-working 'stay-at home' day to see how it effects you. Then make a decision. I take two tablets (10 mg codeine, 5 mg doxylamine and 500 mg paracetamol in each). You could also experiment to see if taking just one helps calm you sufficiently to get through the day.

      Good luck!

  • Posted

    Week 2

    I got through Week 2 ok. The Mersyndol I was using to help was making me too sleepy to concentrate on work. I've started taking it one tablet at a time, rather than two. I keep daily tablets to no more than four - max daily dose is eight. Took first diaz dose of 3.5 mg today. Week 3 begins ... 

    Best of luck to others withdrawing.

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