Valium is a benzodiazepine that calms and relaxes the mind and body. A doctor may prescribe it to treat seizures, anxiety disorders, or muscle spasms. Some people mix Valium with other substances to enhance certain effects or to counteract other effects, such as drowsiness.

What is Valium?

Valium is a controlled substance that comes in the form of a tablet, rectal gel, injectable solution, and oral solution. The benzodiazepine compounds in Valium discourage the firing of neurons, thereby calming the brain. This works to boost the action of GABA (gamma-Aminobutyric acid), which essentially flips the brain’s “off switch,” according to the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Whether someone is taking this medicine as prescribed or misusing it, side effects can occur with use:

  • Clumsiness
  • Drowsiness
  • Double vision
  • Dizziness
  • Constipation
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Headache
  • Lightheadedness
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea

Long-term use of this drug is generally not recommended because Valium can be habit-forming. However, there are instances when a person might be prescribed this drug for several months or more. In these instances, physical dependence will form, but it isn’t considered an addiction unless the substance is abused.

The rate of filled prescriptions for benzodiazepines has gone from 8.1 million in 1996 to 13.5 million in 2013, according to information published by U.S. News & World Report.

How Valium Interacts with Other Substances

People might take Valium with another substance to increase the high they get from only taking one substance. Combining substances can increase the risk of overdose, as well as other serious effects, such as those affecting the heart and lungs.

Taking Valium with other substances can have potentially dangerous effects on the body. One common combination is mixing a benzodiazepine like Valium with an opioid. In fact, more than 30 percent of opioid overdoses also involve a benzodiazepine, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

Both opioids and benzodiazepines have sedative effects. This can lead to breathing suppression and fatal overdose. In some cases, doctors prescribe both of these drugs. Research shows that when someone takes both types of these medications, their risk of fatal overdose is 10 times higher compared to people who only take an opioid, according to a study published in Pain Medicine.

While barbiturates are not commonly prescribed now because of more modern medicines for issues such as insomnia and seizures, they are still used.

According to Information in Neuropathy of Drug Addictions and Substance Misuse the Following are Possible when Benzodiazepines are Mixed with Barbiturates:

  • Increased feelings of giddiness, sedation, and euphoria
  • Motor coordination alterations
  • Significant emotional control issues
  • Potential psychosis
  • Mood swings
  • Engaging in risky behaviors
  • Suppressed cardiac function
  • Significant cognitive issues

Both of these drugs work to depress the central nervous system. This means that respiratory depression is another possible effect of combining these medicines.

Combining Valium with psychedelic drugs is another issue to consider. Psychedelic drugs include LSD and mushrooms. Some people use benzodiazepine medications to come down from a psychedelic drug, which may increase the risk of overdose.

Both Valium and alcohol increase how much GABA is available in the brain. This is what causes their sedative effects. Mixing Valium with alcohol can have several dangerous effects, such as blacking out.

Other Effects Include the Following, According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism:

  • Increased drowsiness
  • Motor control impairment that happens more quickly
  • Memory problems
  • Difficult or slowed breathing
  • Unusual behaviors

Mixing Valium with Stimulants

Common stimulants of abuse that someone might combine with Valium include cocaine and amphetamines. People might use stimulants with Valium to overcome some of the sedative effects of the drug, such as drowsiness. Someone might also use Valium to smooth out the crash that occurs after a person stops taking cocaine.

Cocaine is a commonly abused stimulant. Most people use cocaine by snorting it, but it can also be liquified and administered via injection. Cocaine can be transformed into a rock form known as “crack,” so that a person can smoke it.

Cocaine Increases Dopamine Levels in the Body, Which can Cause the Following Short-Term Effects, According to NIDA:

  • Extreme energy and happiness
  • Sound, sight, and touch hypersensitivity
  • Paranoia
  • Mental alertness
  • Irritability

Amphetamines may be ingested orally, smoked, injected, or snorted. They affect dopamine levels in the brain.

According to the Center for Substance Abuse Research, the Short-Term Effects of Amphetamine Use may Include the Following:

  • Increased body temperature or blood pressure
  • Paranoia or hostility
  • Increased or irregular heart rate
  • Euphoria
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea
  • Palpitations
  • Headache
  • Small muscle twitching
  • Cardiovascular system failure
  • Reduced drowsiness
  • Reduced appetite
  • Dilated pupils
  • Altered sexual behavior
  • Unrealistic feelings of great competence, cleverness, and power
  • Release of the person’s social inhibitions

Combining Valium with a stimulant can significantly impact a person’s brain chemistry. Valium can reduce one’s heart rate while stimulants can increase it. When both drugs are combined, this could have a negative impact on the heart. Using both types of drugs simultaneously could also increase the risk of overdose.

One study looked at how using amphetamines and Valium together affected the heart. The study published in Medical Hypotheses determined that using the two together could potentially lead to myocardial ischemia, which is reduced blood flow to the heart.

Ritalin and Valium

If you’re about to get major surgery, it’s possible you’ll take a drug like Valium, even if you’re prescribed a stimulant drug like Ritalin. Does that make a Ritalin and Valium combination dangerous? After all, they’re both prescription drugs, right? Well, that’s not always accurate. Since Valium is used to promote sleep, relaxation, and a general sense of peace, it’s an ideal medication to “calm your nerves” before a procedure. In controlled doses, it can help eliminate anxiety and stress and make the muscle relax. However, it removes adverse side effects you can experience when using stimulants, which can be dangerous.

Despite being prescribed by doctors for a legitimate purpose, can you take diazepam with Ritalin? Well, it  can lead to unpredictable psychological and physical effects. The two are on the complete opposite end of the spectrum and will mask certain symptoms. This can lead to potentially fatal consequences. Taking diazepam and Ritalin should be avoided unless instructed otherwise by your physician.

Valium and Adderall

Adderall and Ritalin work similarly. However, while Ritalin works sooner and reaches peak performance sooner than Adderall, Adderall stays active in your body longer than Ritalin. Adderall is another potent prescription stimulant drug used to treat conditions like ADHD and narcolepsy. Again, since it’s prescribed by a doctor, it’s easy to be fooled and forget it’s a potentially dangerous drug when misused. Like Ritalin, a mixture of Valium and Adderall is dangerous and should be avoided by all means necessary unless instructed otherwise.

Adderall is commonly misused and abused by college students looking to “cram” during midterms or finals. The drug has been compared to gold on campus at the end of quarters, and it’s associated with sleeplessness and anxiety. In many cases, after spending days studying, students may use a drug like Valium to calm down and go to sleep. The effects of Adderall are strong, and you may need more Valium to achieve the desired effect, which can lead to a potential overdose.

Valium and Cocaine

Potent stimulant drugs like cocaine might end with a severe crash. Cocaine is a drug that people use until they run out, so depending on how much they have, the binge can last a day or several. When they reach that point, they’ll be left feeling awful, wired, and looking for some relief. It’s common for a person to turn to Valium to alleviate these effects, but how dangerous are Valium and cocaine? Extremely dangerous. Using Valium to taper off cocaine can only lead to further abuse and polysubstance dependence.

Despite it being an addictive drug, not everyone who uses cocaine will become addicted. Many may not like the drug because it produces anxiety and jitteriness that is uncomfortable. However, it can still produce severe consequences to someone’s health and well-being, especially when used in conjunction with Valium.

Those who abuse cocaine may become dependent on it and develop a cocaine use disorder, mostly in part due to the intense euphoria and “numbing” buzz it produces. A person who struggles with cocaine addiction will be inclined to use a drug like Valium or any other benzodiazepine when the drugs wear off—mixing more than one drug or using other drugs while under the influence of another is called polysubstance use. This has a much more significant effect than you’d realize. When individuals use depressants alongside stimulants to manage withdrawal symptoms, they run the risk of becoming dependent on both substances. The withdrawal symptoms will be like no other.

Is There a Safe Amount?

There is no simple or universal answer to this question. A person’s tolerance to the drugs they are taking, their weight and body size, the exact drugs they are mixing, the dosage of the drugs, how their body metabolizes the drugs, and other factors all play a role.

The short answer is “no.” Unless a doctor prescribes additional medications with Valium, it is best to avoid using it with any other medicines or substances. It is also imperative to use it exactly as directed. Never take a higher dose than the doctor prescribed. This could lead to tolerance and the potential for abuse.

It is important to refrain from mixing Valium with any other drugs or medications unless a doctor prescribes other medications along with Valium. It is not safe to mix these drugs without direction, especially if any of the substances in the combination are illicit, such as cocaine.

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