Librium (chlordiazepoxide) withdrawal and detox

At Banbury Lodge, we understand that giving up Librium can be a difficult and unpleasant part of your journey towards recovery. However, we are here to support you and help make the process more bearable. Our Librium detox programme is designed to address the physical aspect of your cravings, allowing you to take the first step towards regaining your health and taking control of your life. At our residential rehabilitation centre, we provide all the resources you need to kickstart your recovery journey.

Librium detox

What is Librium detox?

Librium detox is a medical treatment designed to help individuals withdraw from Librium, a drug commonly prescribed for anxiety disorders. The process involves gradually reducing the dosage of Librium until the person can safely stop taking the drug. This is done under medical supervision to ensure the safety of the patient and minimise the severity of withdrawal symptoms.

It is usually followed by other forms of therapy to address the underlying causes of the current issues and prevent relapse.

When is the time to consider a Librium detox?

There are several situations where someone may need to consider a Librium detox. These include:

  • When someone has been taking Librium for an extended period and has developed a tolerance to the medication.
  • When someone is experiencing negative side effects from taking Librium.
  • When someone has been taking Librium for non-medical reasons, such as to get high or to cope with stress or anxiety.

Below are some questions that can help determine if you or someone you know may benefit from a Librium detox:

  • Do you take Librium more often than prescribed, or take larger doses than recommended?
  • Have you experienced negative side effects from taking Librium, such as drowsiness, dizziness, or difficulty breathing?
  • Have you tried to stop taking Librium but experienced withdrawal symptoms, such as anxiety, tremors, or seizures?
  • Have you had difficulty functioning in daily life or maintaining relationships due to your use of Librium?
  • Have you tried other methods to cope with stress, anxiety, or other issues, such as therapy or exercise, but found that Librium helps better?
  • Do you feel like you need Librium to feel normal or function properly?

If the answer to some or most of these questions is yes, it may be time to consider a Librium detox.

Should I attempt to quit Librium “cold turkey”?

Quitting benzodiazepines (such as Librium) cold turkey can be dangerous because it can cause withdrawal symptoms that can be severe and even life-threatening.

We advise you to taper off benzodiazepines because these medications can cause physical dependence, which can lead to withdrawal symptoms when the drug is suddenly stopped, even after short-term use.

Benzodiazepines work by enhancing the effects of a neurotransmitter called gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), which can reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. However, over time, the brain can adapt to the presence of benzodiazepines and become less responsive to GABA, leading to tolerance and the need for higher doses to achieve the same effects.

If a person abruptly stops taking benzodiazepines after becoming physically dependent, they may experience withdrawal symptoms such as;

  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Agitation
  • Tremors
  • Seizures
  • Delirium
  • Hallucinations

These symptoms can be dangerous and even life-threatening, which is why it’s important to taper off the drug under medical supervision through a benzodiazepine detox.

Librium detox - man with anxiety

What does tapering off a drug mean and what are the benefits?

Tapering involves gradually reducing the medication dosage over several weeks or months, depending on the individual’s needs and circumstances. This can allow the brain and body to adapt to the lower doses of the medication and minimise the risk of withdrawal symptoms. Tapering off the drug can also help to minimise the risk of rebound anxiety, which can occur when a person stops taking these medications abruptly and experiences a return of their original symptoms. Other health benefits include;

  • Reduced risk of dependence
  • Lower likelihood of withdrawal symptoms
  • Decreased risk of accidental overdose
  • Better overall physical and mental health

What timeline should I expect during withdrawal from Librium?

When undertaking a Librium detox, it should be understood that there is no ‘’quick fix’’ to the whole process. It takes time for your body to fully recover from the effects that Librium has created within. We have decided to create a detailed timeline of what happens to your body during the withdrawal process so you are aware of each stage and can know what to expect.

It’s important to note that the severity and duration of symptoms can vary depending on various factors, such as the individual’s age, overall health, dosage and length of use and whether or not they have a history of drug abuse.

Week one
Withdrawal symptoms may commence within 24 hours post your last usual dose, although it may take more than a week for some individuals. The primary indications include anxiety, chills or sweating, a rapid heart rate and diminished appetite.
Weeks two to three
Withdrawal symptoms usually reach a peak. Symptoms include depression, insomnia, psychosis and potentially even seizures. This is a crucial stage of the detox and for many is the “make-or-break” part of the process. Medical assistance is strongly urged throughout this time.
Weeks four to six
The symptoms will gradually reduce as the body becomes more adapted to life without Librium. Brain functions will start to return to normal.
Week seven and Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS)
After seven weeks of detox from Librium, the acute withdrawal symptoms should have subsided. However, you may still experience some lingering effects such as cravings or psychological symptoms like anxiety or depression. It is important for you to continue treatment and therapy to address any underlying issues and not relapse.

Some individuals may experience psychological symptoms such as depression, anxiety, or cravings, for an extended period even after discontinuing Librium. This stage is known as Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS) and while not everyone experiences this stage, it’s worth educating yourself about this in order to be fully prepared.
This phase can last for several months to a year or more. Symptoms may include:

  • Mood swings, depression and anxiety
  • Fatigue and low energy
  • Difficulty concentrating and memory problems
  • Insomnia and other sleep disturbances
  • Irritability and anger
  • Cravings for the drug
  • Loss of interest in activities and hobbies
  • Increased sensitivity to stress and emotional triggers

How can Banbury Lodge help with detoxing from Librium?

Banbury Lodge aims to provide a safe and supportive environment for people undergoing prescription drug detox, with the goal of helping them achieve long-term recovery and wellness.

During the Librium detox stage, Banbury Lodge can assist someone by providing:

  • Medical supervision: Banbury Lodge has a team of medical professionals who can monitor the person’s vital signs, provide medication as necessary and ensure their safety during the detox process.
  • Emotional support: The staff at Banbury Lodge can offer emotional support to help the person cope with the stress and anxiety of detox and provide counselling to address any underlying issues that may have contributed to their issues in the first place.

What are the next steps after Librium detox?

At Banbury Lodge’s Librium detox programme, detox is just the first step. Alongside this stage, our healthcare professionals will provide you with a Librium rehab programme.

This will involve a combination of therapy and counselling sessions, which can help you address the underlying issues contributing to your Librium addiction. Our aim is to equip you with the skills and tools you need to maintain your sobriety over the long term and to help you to rebuild your life in a positive and meaningful way.

Our aftercare programme will also support you in your recovery journey, providing ongoing guidance and support as needed. Our ultimate goal is to ensure that you leave our treatment programme feeling empowered, confident and ready to embrace a new chapter in your life.

How can I help a loved one during the Librium detox period?

Being present for your loved one during the Librium detox is essential. Although Banbury Lodge is committed to providing the peaceful environment needed for your loved one, you can still be an active pillar of support during this time.

Be supportive

During the detox period, your loved one may go through a whole range of emotions. It can be a lonely and confusing time, so try to assure your loved one that you are there for them and willing to help in any way possible. Let them know that they are not alone in their journey.

Encourage healthy habits

Help your loved one establish healthy habits and routines like exercise, a healthy diet and regular sleep patterns. Banbury Lodge can provide access to these health benefits but encouragement from you may be crucial.

Be patient

Remember that detoxification can be lengthy and requires patience from you and your loved one. There could be times where you both get frustrated but it’s important to not let these emotions get the better of you.

Check-in regularly

Regularly check in with your loved one and ask how they are feeling. This could be through a scheduled visit or by picking up the phone and giving them a call. Remember to listen to them and be empathetic; they need your help during this difficult time.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is Librium detox necessary?
Abrupt cessation of Librium can lead to severe withdrawal symptoms, including anxiety, insomnia, seizures, and potentially life-threatening complications. Medical oversight during detox ensures that symptoms are managed effectively, reducing discomfort and minimising health risks. It also provides a structured environment for individuals to begin their journey towards recovery with professional support and guidance.
How long does Librium detox take?
Librium detox typically lasts around 1 to 4 weeks, depending on factors such as the individual’s dosage, duration of use, and overall health. The process involves managing acute withdrawal symptoms, which peak within the first few days and gradually diminish over time. However, some individuals may experience lingering symptoms like anxiety or insomnia for several weeks after detox begins.
Can I detox from Librium at home?
Detoxing from Librium at home is generally not recommended due to the potential severity of withdrawal symptoms and associated risks. Medical observation is crucial during Librium detox to manage symptoms effectively, ensure safety, and address any potential complications.

Librium detox - caring loved ones

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We look forward to helping you take your first step.

0203 553 3757