- Side Effects
- Drug Interactions
- Pregnancy & Breastfeeding
What is the difference between benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine?
- Benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine are used to treat muscle spasms.
- Benzodiazepines are also used to treat insomnia, seizures, anxiety disorders, nervousness, panic disorders, alcohol withdrawal, status epilepticus, premenstrual syndrome, and as sedation during surgery.
- Benzodiazepines are central nervous system depressants that cause drowsiness and cyclobenzaprine is a muscle relaxant.
- A list of common benzodiazepines include diazepam (Valium), alprazolam (Xanax), lorazepam (Ativan), temazepam (Restoril), and clonazepam (Klonopin).
- Brand names for cyclobenzaprine include Flexeril and Amrix.
- Side effects of benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine that are similar include drowsiness, dry mouth, nausea, constipation, and confusion.
- Side effects of benzodiazepines that are different from cyclobenzaprine include lightheadedness, vomiting, memory problems, balance problems, changes in appetite, weight gain, decreased sex drive, and fatigue.
- Side effects of cyclobenzaprine that are different from benzodiazepines include fatigue, headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, unpleasant taste, nervousness, acid reflux, and abdominal pain or discomfort
- Withdrawal symptoms may occur if you suddenly stop taking benzodiazepines or cyclobenzaprine. Withdrawal symptoms for benzodiazepines may include difficulty concentrating, sleep problems, irritability, anxiety, panic attacks, hand tremors, vomiting, palpitations, headache, muscle pain and stiffness, and perceptual changes. Withdrawal symptoms for cyclobenzaprine may include headaches, nausea, and weakness.
What are benzodiazepines? What is cyclobenzaprine?
Benzodiazepines are central nervous system depressants are used to treat anxiety and panic disorders, seizures, nervousness, muscle spasms, insomnia, alcohol withdrawal, status epilepticus, premenstrual syndrome, and as sedation during surgery.
- Benzodiazepines are believed to work by boosting the effects of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. Seizures, anxiety, and other illnesses may be caused by increased activity of nerves in the brain. GABA reduces this nerve activity in the brain.
Cyclobenzaprine is a muscle relaxant used to relieve muscle spasm when the spasm is due to problems in the muscle itself and not in the nerves controlling the muscles.
- Cyclobenzaprine is thought to work through a complex mechanism within the nervous system, probably in the brainstem.
- Cyclobenzaprine is used along with rest and physical therapy for short-term relief of muscle spasms associated with acute painful muscle and skeletal conditions. It is only for short-term use, up to two or three weeks.
What are the side effects of benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine?
Benzodiazepine side effects
Common side effects include:
- Memory impairment
- Improper body balance
- Increase or decrease in appetite
- Weight gain
- Dry mouth
- Reduced libido
Serious side effects include:
- Respiratory depression
- Dependence and abuse
- Withdrawal symptoms
- Slow heart rate
- Severe low blood pressure
- Akathisia (a movement disorder)
- Increased heart rate
Cyclobenzaprine side effects
The most common side effects of cyclobenzaprine include:
Other reported side effects include:
- Blurred vision,
- Unpleasant taste
- Acid reflux
- Abdominal pain or discomfort
Possible serious side effects include:
What is the dosage of benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine?
Dosage depends on the type of benzodiazepine prescribed. All oral benzodiazepines are available in tablet forms.
- Alprazolam and clorazepate are available as extended-release tablets.
- Alprazolam, clobazam, diazepam, and lorazepam are available in oral liquid form.
- Alprazolam and clonazepam are available in orally dissolving tablets.
- Chlordiazepoxide, oxazepam, and temazepam are available in capsule form.
- Diazepam also is available as a rectal gel.
Some benzodiazepines are available for injection.
- The recommended dose of cyclobenzaprine dose is 5 or 10 mg three times daily using immediate release tablets or 15 or 30 mg once daily using extended release tablets.
Can you get addicted to benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine?
Benzodiazepines or benzos are habit forming and you can become addicted to them - even if you take them as your doctor or health care professional has prescribed.
- People who have a history of drug or alcohol abuse are more likely to develop an addiction to these drugs.
- If you use these drugs over a long period of time you can develop a tolerance for them. This means that you will need higher doses of the drug to treat your health condition or disease because you've become tolerant of the weaker formulations of the drug. These drugs may be very effective for the treatment of several conditions, for example, anxiety and insomnia; but be careful because you can become addicted to them.
- The street names for benzodiazepine drugs are "Benzos" and "Downers." Drug addicts abuse these drugs to get "high." They can cause addiction similar to opioids (narcotic drugs like oxycodone, morphine, hydrocodone, and fentanyl), cannabinoids (marijuana), and the club drug GHB (gamma-hydroxybutyrate).
They are commonly abused by young adolescents and young adults who crush it up and snort it, or take the tablet to get high. If you abuse this medication you may have adverse effects with symptoms include:
- Disturbing or vivid dreams
Signs and symptoms that you might be addicted include:
- Problems sleeping
- Goose bumps
- Uncontrollable leg movements
- Bone and muscle pain
It is very difficult to recover from benzodiazepine addiction because these drugs change the chemistry of the brain. Contact a drug addiction treatment center if you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction.
Quitting cold turkey is not likely to be successful and can be dangerous because of symptoms of withdrawal. Doctors and other health care professionals that treat addiction will formulate a taper schedule to slowly wean off the medication to reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms during treatment.
Signs and symptoms of overdose include:
Benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms and signs
If you stop taking these medications abruptly you may experience withdrawal symptoms that include:
- Problems concentrating
- Sleep problems
- Increased anxiety and tension
- Panic attacks
- Hand tremors
- Dry heaving and vomiting
- Muscle pain and stiffness
- A host of perceptual changes
The severity of the withdrawal symptoms depends on amount and duration of benzodiazepine use. Withdrawal symptoms can be deadly.
These medications are classified by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) as Schedule IV drugs. This means that they have a lower potential and risk of dependence than other more powerful drugs like codeine, testosterone, anabolic steroids, Vicodin (hydrocodone and acetaminophen), OxyContin (oxycodone), Adderall (amphetamine and dextroamphetamine), and Ritalin (methylphenidate).
Latest Medications News
Daily Health News
What drugs interact with benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine?
Benzodiazepine drug interactions
Combining alcohol with a benzodiazepine is very dangerous. People who drink alcohol while taking this medicine will feel the effects of alcohol faster. It's not safe to drink alcohol or take other drugs that have similar effects on the central nervous system (CNS) at the same time because these drugs or substances interact with oral benzodiazepines by causing additional depression of the brain and respiratory depression.
Respiratory depression can lead to breathing that's inadequate for supplying oxygen to the body. This can cause death. Examples of these drugs and products that increase sedative side effects or the risk of respiratory depression from benzodiazepines include the following.
- morphine (MScontin)
- fentanyl (Duragesic)
- oxycodone (Oxycontin)
- hydrocodone (Zohydro ER)
- acetaminophen/hydrocodone (Vicodin, Norco, Lorcet)
- zolpidem (Ambien, ZolpiMist)
- zaleplon (Sonata)
- eszopiclone (Lunesta
- phenobarbital and
- many other drugs
Cyclobenzaprine drug interactions
- Cyclobenzaprine is chemically related to the tricyclic class of antidepressants, for example, amitriptyline (Elavil, Endep), nortriptyline Pamelor). As such, it should not be taken with or within two weeks of any monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor, for example, isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine (Parnate), and procarbazine (Matulane). High fever, convulsions, and even death can occur when these drugs are used together.
- Cyclobenzaprine interacts with other medications and drugs that slow the brain's processes, such as
Are benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine safe to use while pregnant and breastfeeding?
- The FDA classifies benzodiazepines as pregnancy category D, which means that benzodiazepines can potentially cause fetal harm if administered to pregnant women. If benzodiazepines have to be used in pregnant women or if the patient may become pregnant while taking benzodiazepines, the patients must be informed of potential risks to the fetus.
- Benzodiazepines enter breast milk and can cause lethargy and weight loss in the newborn. Therefore, they should not be used in nursing mothers.
- There are no adequate studies of cyclobenzaprine in pregnant women. However, studies in animals suggest no important effects on the fetus. Cyclobenzaprine therefore can be used in pregnancy if the physician feels that it is necessary.
- It is not known whether cyclobenzaprine is secreted in milk. However, since it is related to the tricyclic antidepressants, some of which are excreted in breast milk, caution is advised in using this medication in women who are breastfeeding.
Benzodiazepines and cyclobenzaprine are used to treat muscle spasms. Benzodiazepines are also used to treat insomnia, seizures, anxiety disorders, nervousness, panic disorders, alcohol withdrawal, status epilepticus, premenstrual syndrome, and as sedation during surgery. Benzodiazepines are central nervous system depressants that cause drowsiness and cyclobenzaprine is a muscle relaxant.
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Anxiety Disorder Pictures: Symptoms, Panic Attacks, and More with Pictures
Learn about generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). See if your worries are normal or something more by learning about symptoms,...
Sleep Disorders: Insomnia, Sleep Apnea, and More
Learn about the different types of sleep/wake disorders such as insomnia, narcolepsy, and sleep apnea. Explore the symptoms,...
What Are Phobias? Agoraphobia, Social Anxiety Disorder, Other Fears
What are you afraid of? Learn about phobias such as agoraphobia, claustrophobia, arachnophobia, zoophobia, and more. Discover...
Muscle Cramps (Charley Horse) and Muscle Spasms
What are the differences between muscle spasms and cramps? Learn about the causes of muscle spasms and cramps (charley horse) in...
Anxiety, Stress, Worry, and Your Body
What is the definition of anxiety, stress, and worry? Find treatments to relieve stress, eliminate worry, and combat anxiety as...
Sleep Better, Conquer Insomnia
What is insomnia? Insomnia by definition is trouble falling or staying asleep. Insomnia causes are varied. Learn 10 tips on how...
Neck Pain: Causes of Stiffness, Muscle Spasms, Treatment, and Relief
What causes chronic neck pain? If you have poor posture, bad sleep habits, or spine problems, these issues can lead to a stiff...
20 Tips to Beat Insomnia and Sleep Better
Good sleep hygiene leads to better sleep. Avoid insomnia and sleep better by minimizing stress, exercising, and taking proper...
Anxiety and Panic Disorders: Conditions That Look Like Anxiety
Is it anxiety or something else? Click through to learn which conditions share symptoms.
Anxiety & Panic Disorders: Risk Factors for Anxiety
Do you feel anxious? Many things could make it more likely. Learn more, including what you can do if you feel anxious.
Insomnia Quiz: What Is Insomnia?
Insomnia affects all age groups, and is the most common sleep disorder in the world. There also seems to be a link between...
Depression: Foods to Avoid If You Have Anxiety or Depression
Feeling a little jittery? It could be something you ate. Learn the foods to avoid if you're anxious or depressed.
Anxiety & Panic Disorders: Physical Symptoms of Anxiety
A fluttering heart, knots in your stomach, clammy hands -- are you just nervous about something? Talk to your doctor if it...
Related Disease Conditions
Muscle spasms are involuntary muscle contractions that come on suddenly and are usually quite painful. Dehydration, doing strenuous exercise in a hot environment, prolonged muscle use, and certain diseases of the nervous system may cause muscle spasms. Symptoms and signs of a muscle spasm include an acute onset of pain and a possible bulge seen or felt beneath the skin where the muscle is located. Gently stretching the muscle usually resolves a muscle spasm.
When Should I Worry About Muscle Twitching?
What is muscle twitching, and how do you recognize it? Muscle twitching is a common issue that affects many people. Learn the signs of muscle twitching, what causes it, when to see a doctor, and how to treat it. Sore muscles after exercise is normal and a sign your muscles are repairing themselves. Extreme soreness, however, may be a sign that you've overdone it.
Muscle cramps are involuntarily and forcibly contracted muscles that do not relax. Extremely common, any muscles that have voluntary control, including some organs, are subject to cramp. Since there is such variety in the types of muscle cramps that can occur, many causes and preventative medications are known. Stretching is the most common way to stop or prevent most muscle cramps.
How Can I Cure Insomnia Fast? 15 Tips
Insomnia is the medical term for the inability to fall asleep or to stay asleep not just for one night but from several days to months. Nearly 35 out of every 100 people suffer from insomnia.
What Are the Five Types of Insomnia?
The five types of insomnia are as follows: acute insomnia, chronic insomnia, onset insomnia, maintenance insomnia, and behavioral insomnia of childhood.
What Is the Difference Between a Panic Attack and an Anxiety Attack?
What is the difference between a panic attack and an anxiety attack? Learn about the differences between these common occurrences.
Is Muscle Twitching Normal After Exercise?
Many people find that their muscles twitch after exercise. Learn the signs of muscle twitches, what causes muscle twitches, how doctors diagnose muscle twitches, and what you can do to treat muscle twitches.
Anxiety is a feeling of apprehension and fear characterized by symptoms such as trouble concentrating, headaches, sleep problems, and irritability. Anxiety disorders are serious medical illnesses that affect approximately 19 million American adults. Treatment for anxiety may incorporate medications and psychotherapy.
Second Source article from WebMD
Second Source article from Government
Why Do I Have Insomnia Before My Period?
About 70% of all women say that they experience changes in their sleep before their period begins. This may be due to hormonal changes during menstrual periods.
Muscle Pain (Myofascial Pain Syndrome)
Muscle pain (myofascial pain syndrome) is muscle pain in the body's soft tissues due to injury or strain. Symptoms include muscle pain with tender points and fatigue. Treatment usually involves physical therapy, massage therapy, or trigger point injection.
What Causes Insomnia?
Insomnia is defined as repeated difficulty with sleep initiation, maintenance, consolidation, or quality that occurs despite adequate time and opportunity for sleep and results in some form of daytime impairment. There are three types of insomnia.
How Do I Stop Catastrophizing Anxiety?
Similar to other mental health and anxiety disorders, you can stop catastrophizing by managing your negative thoughts through these techniques.
Insomnia is the perception or complaint of inadequate or poor-quality sleep because of difficulty falling asleep; waking up frequently during the night with difficulty returning to sleep; waking up too early in the morning; or unrefreshing sleep. Secondary insomnia is the most common type of insomnia. Treatment for insomnia include lifestyle changes, cognitive behavioral therapy, and medication.
What Happens During an Anxiety Attack?
Anxiety can occur during everyday life, it could be fleeting or it could persist and build. But if you have an anxiety disorder, you may feel your anxiety or panic overwhelm you with intense anxiety and fear.
Is Trichotillomania an Anxiety Disorder?
Trichotillomania, also known as hair-pulling, is an impulse control disorder. It could be caused by anxiety and stress. It can coexist with an anxiety disorder. However, psychiatrists consider it as a separate illness and not an anxiety disorder.
Is Picking at Your Skin a Symptom of Anxiety?
Skin picking may be triggered by anxiety as a way to relieve stress. When it becomes frequent and intense, it can become a mental health disorder.
Separation anxiety disorder is a common childhood anxiety disorder that has many causes. Infants, children, older kids and adults can suffer from symptoms of separation anxiety disorder. Common separation anxiety treatment methods include therapy and medications. Factors that contribute to how quickly or successfully a child moves past separation anxiety by preschool age include how well the parent and child reunite, the skills the child and adult have at coping with the separation, and how well the adult responds to the infant's separation issues. For example, children of anxious parents tend to be anxious children.
Insomnia Treatment (Sleep Aids and Stimulants)
Insomnia is difficulty in falling or staying asleep, the absence of restful sleep, or poor quality of sleep. Insomnia is a symptom and not a disease. The most common causes of insomnia are medications, psychological conditions, environmental changes and stressful events. Treatments may include non-drug treatments, over-the-counter medicines, and/or prescription medications.
What Are the Root Causes of Anxiety and Depression?
What causes anxiety and depression? Learn about symptoms and potential root causes that may increase your risk of developing mood disorders.
Which Color Light Helps Anxiety?
Chromotherapy is an alternative medicine technique that claims to cure various physical or mental disorders by using colors. Most practitioners of modern medicine believe that this technique lacks scientific evidence.
What Are the Six Types of Anxiety Disorders?
Anxiety disorders cause worry, fear and panic as an irrational response to mundane situations. The six main types are generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety, separation anxiety, trauma-related disorders and phobias.
Can You Self-diagnose Anxiety?
While the internet is full of self-assessment tests to self-diagnose anxiety, only a thorough clinical examination by a doctor can accurately diagnose the condition.
Is Valerian Root Good for Anxiety?
Valerian is an herb that has been used for many centuries to help relieve anxiety and as a sleep aid in traditional medicine. The studies for proving the effectiveness of valerian root for sleep and anxiety have not been conclusive. More studies are required to prove its effectiveness and find the optimal dose.
Holiday Depression, Anxiety, and Stress
Though the holidays are a fun time for most, for others, they're a sad, lonely and anxiety-filled time. Get tips on how to avoid depression and stress during the holiday season.
What Are the 7 More Dangerous Medicines to Mix?
Some drug interactions can have serious side effects, while others may be lethal. You should avoid dangerous drug mistakes like mixing alcohol and opioids, warfarin and acetaminophen and few others.
Is Anxiousness the Same as Anxiety?
Anxiousness is not the same as anxiety. Feeling anxious from time to time is normal, whereas severe, ongoing anxiety may be a sign of generalized anxiety disorder.
What Does Anxiety Do to Your Body?
It increases a person’s chances of suffering from other medical conditions, such as heart diseases, raised blood pressure, high cholesterol obesity, depression and diabetes. In short term, anxiety may cause sleep disturbances and poor work performance.
What Symptoms Are Caused by Anxiety?
It's normal to feel stressed or worried about things that happen in our everyday lives. However, people who experience anxiety disorders often feel heightened fear or worry about common situations.
What Triggers Social Anxiety?
Social anxiety disorder, also known as social phobia, is a mental health condition that is characterized by extreme anxiety and fear of social settings. People with social anxiety disorder have a constant, intense, persistent fear of being watched, judged, negatively evaluated, or rejected in a social situation.
What Is the Best Treatment for Anxiety?
The best treatment for anxiety is typically a combination of psychotherapy and medication. However, lifestyle modifications can also help manage symptoms.
What Is the Main Cause of Anxiety?
Anxiety is usually caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors that may include stress, trauma, family history, and underlying health conditions.
What Does Social Anxiety Feel Like?
People affected by social anxiety or social phobia often feel intense fear or anxiety of being judged or criticized while being in a social situation.
How Does a Person With Anxiety Feel?
What are symptoms of anxiety? A person with anxiety may experience feelings of nervousness, restlessness, inability to concentrate, stomach problems, and more.
How Does Anxiety Affect You Physically?
Physical signs of anxiety include rapid heart rate, shortness of breath, nausea, sweating, headache, and more. Find out how to recognize and ease your symptoms.
Treatment & Diagnosis
- Insomnia FAQs
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation
- Hot Flashes: Anxiety Worsens Hot Flashes
- Trouble Sleeping? Insomnia May Be Why
- 10 Tips to Avoid Insomnia and Get a Good Night's Sleep
- Myositis Muscle (Pain and Inflammation) Serious Drug Interactions
- What Causes Rectal Muscle Spasms?
- Muscle Cramp (Charley Horse) Treatment and Symptoms
- How Muscles Work & Respond to Resistance Training
Medications & Supplements
- Benzodiazepines (Benzodiazepine Drug Class)
- Beta Blockers vs. Xanax
- cyclobenzaprine - oral, Flexeril
- Lexapro vs. Xanax
- alprazolam (Xanax)
- What Is an Example of Chemical Restraint?
- diazepam (Valium, Diastat, Acudial, Diastat Pediatric, Diazepam Intensol)
- Xanax vs. Valium
- Ativan (lorazepam) vs. Valium (diazepam)
- cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril, Amrix, Fexmid)
- Ativan vs. Xanax
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.