Bromazepam Addiction and abuse - Detox Plus UK


bromazepam addiction infographic

Bromazepam is a benzodiazepine medication used to treat anxiety and panic disorders. 

Like other benzodiazepines, Bromazepam carries a risk of being abused, misused, and leading to dependence.

According to numerous psychiatric professionals, Bromazepam has a higher likelihood of being abused compared to other benzodiazepines due to its rapid absorption and quick onset of effects.

Here, we look at why Bromazepam can be addictive, who should avoid it, and its risks and effects. Further on, we look at Bromazepam withdrawal symptoms and why, if you think you have a problem with Bromazpeman, you should seek professional help.

Table of contents

What is Bromazepam?

Why Bromazepam is addictive

Preventing addiction

Tolerance, dependence & withdrawal

Long-term abuse effects

Mixing Bromazepam with other drugs

What is Bromazepam?

Bromazepam belongs to the class of medications known as benzodiazepines. It is used for the short-term relief of symptoms of excessive anxiety. It can also be used as a pre-med for surgery within a hospital and to treat the symptoms of opiate or alcohol withdrawal,

Along with providing relief from anxiety symptoms, the drug has sedative, hypnotic, anxiolytic, and muscle relaxant properties, but it does not have any antidepressant effects.

In the UK, Bromazepam is a controlled Class C medication under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

Brand names of Bromazepam include:

Brazepam, Bromaze, Lectopam, Lexotan, Lexilium, Lexaurin, Lexatin, Lexotanil, Rekotnil and Somalium

How Bromazepam works

Studies have shown that it lowers the release of catecholamines, including dopamine and adrenaline, in the brain. This, in turn, reduces levels of anxiety and calms brain activity.

However, this anti-anxiety action can also be associated with a reduction in 5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptamine).

5 HTP acts as a neurotransmitter and can be converted into serotonin within the body. Because of this, there may be a higher incidence of low mood and depression in a person taking Bromazepam.

Common side effects of Bromazepam:

Changes in appetiteSedation
Delayed reaction timeSlurred or delayed speech
Severe itchingAnaphylactic reaction

Why Bromazepam is addictive

Addiction to benzodiazepine medications is on the rise, mainly due to the ease of buying drugs such as Diazepam, Bromazepam and Xanax online via the dark web.

Last year, the British government reported a 6 % increase in the number of people entering treatment for a benzodiazepine addiction.

Bromazepam is considered to be potentially more addictive than other benzodiazepines, as it is short-acting with an intermediate onset. This also means that withdrawal symptoms are likely to occur sooner than with longer-acting benzodiazepines.

Bromazepam should only be taken for as short a time as possible.

No evidence suggests that taking Bromazepam for longer than two to four weeks is beneficial. On the contrary, taking Bromazepam for longer than this can lead to drug dependence and addiction.

Preventing Bromazepam addiction

You can prevent Bromazepam addiction by following your doctor’s prescription and heeding the warning signs.

  • Bromazepam can be safely taken, but only for short periods.
  • Discuss alternative medications with your doctor if you feel physically or psychologically dependent on Bromazepam.
  • Don’t take Bromazepam that is not authentically prescribed for you, e.g. illegal online tablets or a friend’s prescription.

doctor medical detox

Help for Bromazepam Addiction

Being dependent on benzodiazepines is a terrifying place to be. Understandably, you will fear how you will cope without them and what to expect during detox.


Whilst detoxing from a benzodiazepine medication is one of the most challenging detoxes to undergo, it is entirely possible with the right medical help and therapy.


Starting a rehab journey can be full of unknowns; however, finishing and completing addiction therapy or attending a rehabilitation programme can be the start of a new, exciting and infinitely better life.


As with all benzodiazepines, tolerance can develop quickly over a matter of a few weeks. When this happens, Bromazepam will not work so effectively. You may well be tempted to abuse the medication or seek an increase in your prescription if your original complaint has not been resolved. This is often the start of a very slippery road that can quickly spiral out of your control.


Physical dependence on Bromazepam happens when your body and brain require the drug to be in your bloodstream to operate normally. Without it, you will suffer from benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms. Additionally, you may find that you become psychologically dependent on Bromazepam due to its calming effects on the brain.


Withdrawal symptoms are more likely to occur if you have been taking Bromazepam for more than a few weeks. If you have been prescribed this medication for longer than a few weeks, your healthcare provider should help you to taper off.

If you have become dependent on Bromazepam through abusing it, never stop taking it suddenly. This could cause you to suffer life-threatening withdrawal symptoms. You will also be at an increased risk of developing PAWS (post-acute withdrawal syndrome) by stopping Bromazepam in this way.

Bromazepine withdrawal can be successfully and safely managed through a medical detox facilitated by a CQC-registered detox clinic or rehab facility.

Withdrawal symptoms from Bromazepam:

Increased anxiety, nervousness and panicFeelings of paralysis (catatonia)
Delirium tremensFast and irregular heartbeat
Extreme sweatingConfusion
Dysphoria: feelings of depression and sadnessDissociation: feeling disconnected and out of touch with reality
Seizures and convulsionsMuscle cramps
TremorsStomach upset: nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and pain
Hallucinations: seeing and hearing things that are not thereMania: racing thoughts and erratic behaviour
Thoughts or actions of self-harmSuicidal thoughts or actions

Due to Bromazepam having a half-life of 8 to 12 hours, where a dependence has formed, withdrawal symptoms can start as soon as 8 to 12 hours after your last dose. In cases of chronic use, withdrawal can begin even more shortly. Abrupt cessation of Bromazepam, known as a cold-turkey detox, can lead to death.

Long-term effects of Bromazepam

Long-term use of Bromazepam is counterproductive. You may easily mistake withdrawal symptoms for increased symptoms of anxiety and depression.

When Bromazepam is taken for prolonged periods or abused as part of an addiction,  it can cause irreparable damage to the brain. This can result in a whole host of symptoms, including:

  • Forgetfulness
  • Cognitive decline
  • Depression
  • Behavioural changes.

Research has shown that Benzodiazepines can cause damage to the cerebral cortex, which houses the brain’s functional areas for motor, sensory and association. Motor areas control a person’s motor activities, while sensory areas receive sensory information.

The association, part of the brain, is mainly responsible for processing what goes on between sensory input and the generation of behaviour in response. These damaging changes to the brain can also occur at therapeutic doses in the long-term use of benzodiazepines.

Taking Bromazepam with other drugs: Risks & Warnings

Bromazepam has depressant effects on the Central Nervous System. This means that it is hazardous to mix with other Central Nervous System depressants.

Mixing Bromazepam with alcohol, opioids, sleeping tablets, benzodiazepines, and even certain antidepressants will enhance the effects of both substances. Ultimately, this could lead to respiratory arrest, coma and death.

Taking Bromazepam regularly in conjunction with another substance also increases your risk of developing a dual addiction. This is especially true if you have ever created an addiction before or have an alcohol or opioid dependence.

It would be best to be careful when combining over-the-counter medicines with Lexotan. Some medications contain alcohol, codeine or other substances that will increase the effect of sedation when mixed with Bromazepam. Your pharmacist can advise you on which drugs to avoid and which are safe.

You should not drive or operate heavy machinery if Lexotan affects how alert you feel.

Bromazepam and alcohol

Alcohol is not safe to take with Bromazepam due to the increased effects of drunkenness and sedation that occur when the two are mixed. There is also a risk that you may accidentally overdose by combining the two.

Mixing Bromazepam and alcohol can result in the following:

  • Decreased awareness of your surroundings
  • Impulsive behaviours
  • Risk-taking
  • Increased risk of fall and injury
  • Not recalling events that took place whilst under the influence (blackout)
  • Respiratory depression and arrest
  • Taking more Bromazepam than you intended and not realising
  • Forgetfulness during intoxication
  • Unsteadiness on your feet
  • Slurred or incomprehensible speech

If you are taking Bromazepam for alcohol withdrawal, you mustn’t drink alcohol. Similarly, you should not take Bromazepam if you suffer from an untreated alcohol use disorder. This is not only a potentially lethal combination but can lead to a dual addiction to both alcohol and Bromazepam.

If you are in recovery from a substance use disorder, you should avoid this medication if at all possible. As your brain is already primed for addiction, you will be at a higher risk of developing Bromazepam addiction. Your healthcare provider can consider alternatives that will be safer for you.

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