(benzos, vallies, blues, Valium, Xanax, xannies)
Benzos are a type of depressant drug that are used in the treatment of anxiety and insomnia. Recreationally, they are usually used for their mood-lifting effects. Although benzos are prescription drugs, there is a huge amount of illicit production. This means that contaminated, incorrectly dosed pills have flooded the market. The most commonly used benzos are Valium (diazepam) and Xanax (alprazolam).
Effects | Dosage | Advice | Support
There are lots of different benzodiazepines available on the market. The effects of each are largely similar but vary in duration and strength.
- Reduction in anxiety
- Lifted mood/euphoria
- Impaired coordination
- Poor concentration and memory
- ‘Flattened’ mood
- Depression and suicidal thoughts
- Aggression (particularly when combined with alcohol)
- Blackouts/memory loss (particularly at high doses or when combined with alcohol)
Paradoxical symptoms (the opposite effects of those that are desirable) sometimes occur when a benzo wears off. This is more likely to happen with short acting benzos.
As always, dosage will depend on a number of factors including weight, gender and tolerance, amongst others. The following advice is a guide only. If the benzodiazepine you are using is not listed here you can click here for a dose conversion tool.
The effects will take around 15- 40 minutes to kick in and will last for 5-8 hours.
Light: 2.5-5 mg
Common: 5-15 mg
Strong: 15-30 mg
The effects will take around 20-40 minutes to kick in and will last 5-8 hours.
Light: 0.25-0.5 mg
Common: 0.5-1.5 mg
Strong: 1.5-2 mg
Harm Reduction Advice
- Using prescription drugs that have not been prescribed to you will always carry risks, this is especially true of benzodiazepines as they are so often dosed incorrectly or contain a different substance entirely. Always be cautious when taking benzos, even if your supplier says they are ‘legit’ and they come in convincing packaging.
- Start low and take it slow. It’s impossible to tell if each pill contains the same amount of active ingredient.
- Resist the urge to redose. Benzos effect your memory and its can get really difficult to keep track of how many you’ve taken.
- Avoid alcohol if you’re using benzos. It will increase the chance that you’ll have an unpleasant experience and will put you at a greater risk of overdose.
- Try not to use benzos too regularly as tolerance builds quickly and they are highly addictive. If you think you’ve developed a dependence seek professional support as coming off benzos too quickly can be very dangerous.
- Self-medicating for anxiety/depression won’t improve your mental health in the long run. If you’re struggling with poor mental health contact your GP or Vitaminds.
- Do not attempt to drive after taking benzos. Make sure you find a safe alternative.
The Drop is BDP’s one stop shop for support, advice and resources around party drugs. Browse our website for more support on prescription drugs.
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BENZOS DOSE CONVERTER
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Image Credit: Dominic Milton Trott