Side Effects of Doral (Quazepam Tablets)

For many people, a healthy sleep schedule is elusive, to the point of causing daytime fatigue and exhaustion. Drugs like quazepam (sold under the brand name Doral) can help, but it certainly needs to be taken with care, as it can be habit-forming.

This article will discuss what the side effects of Doral are, what withdrawal symptoms may develop, and what Doral misuse and addiction can be like.

Doral and Benzodiazepines

plastic bottle of white round pills spilled out

The medical journal Pharmacotherapy offers a basic explanation of what quazepam is: a “benzodiazepine hypnotic” that can be used as an addition to a main form of therapy for insomnia.

So, what are benzodiazepines and how do they work? Medical News Today and LIVESTRONG explain the nature of the drugs as they target specific chemicals in the brain. People who have an imbalance in those chemicals are unable to regulate their emotions on their own. When a person who has this problem takes a benzodiazepine, the drug stimulates the creation of those mood-regulating chemicals, providing an artificial boost that helps regulate moods.

Benzodiazepines and Sleep

The clinical director of a sleep disorders center explains to WebMD that benzodiazepines change how a person sleeps, reducing the amount of time spent in certain stages of sleep. Such drugs change the “sleep architecture,” in her words, bypassing some of the stages of sleep in favor of other stages, which should ensure the person remains asleep for longer periods of time.

The success that benzodiazepines have had in treating insomnia has explained a large degree of the drugs’ popularity. The American Sleep Association notes that:

  • 30 percent of adults occasionally have periods of insomnia
  • 10 percent of adults have chronic insomnia.

The causes of insomnia are far-ranging, but negative life factors can contribute to its development. Some of these factors can include:

  • Stress.
  • Depression.
  • Emotional distress.
  • Poor work-life balance.
  • Traveling a lot for work.

While some remedies for insomnia and associated sleep problems include lifestyle changes and non-pharmacological-based treatments (such as yoga, meditation, mindfulness, etc.), having a doctor’s prescription for a benzodiazepine (like Doral) can provide a quick and easy fix for a very frustrating problem.

The Risk of Withdrawal

Woman holding head from headache while lying on couch under blanket

Like any drug, Doral can cause side effects, even if the medication is taken as prescribed. Taking Doral beyond its prescribed uses will almost certainly cause side effects of increasing severity.

Drug withdrawal is a process that takes place when a person stops taking a drug after a prolonged (or intense) period of use. Regular or frequent consumption of a drug (legal or illegal, prescription or recreational) changes the functioning of the body and brain. Over time, even the brain can become so used to the presence of the drugs to the point where any attempt to stop using the drugs causes unpleasant and distressing physical and psychological symptoms, including, but not limited to:

  • Muscle cramping and pain.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Cravings.
  • Thoughts of suicide.

Drug withdrawal is a strong indicator that the use of a drug (no matter how benign or helpful it once was) has gone too far and a problem has developed.

Doral Side Effects

For that reason, a person who has been prescribed quazepam should check in with a doctor after 7-10 days of use, to see whether or not the regimen can be safely discontinued. A doctor should also be consulted if any side effects prove so strong or frequent that they impair daily life. Examples of such side effects might include:

  • Drowsiness during the daytime, or during hours not usually associated with sleeping.
  • Memory problems.
  • Difficulty balancing or coordinating movement or muscles.
  • Vision problems.
  • Headaches.
  • Depression.
  • Unpredictable mood swings.
  • Reduced libido.
  • Nausea, diarrhea, or loss of appetite.

While these side effects are all distressing in their own way, a doctor may nonetheless recommend a Doral prescription if they believe that the 7-10 day period of use will be enough to get a person’s sleep back in order. After that time, lifestyle changes (such as a fixed bedtime and routine) as well as other practices (yoga, meditation, etc.) should replace Doral.

Severe Side Effects

Some people may experience significantly distressing or intrusive side effects of Doral, at which point a doctor should be consulted so the the consumption of this medication can be done safely. Examples of these more serious side effects include:

  • Insomnia getting worse.
  • Nightmares and hallucinations.
  • Difficulty concentrating or speaking.
  • Uncharacteristic behavior.
  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Rapid heartbeat.
  • Jaundice (where the skin or the whites of the eyes turn a shade of yellow).

Even when Doral is discontinued per its prescribed use, there is a possibility that the insomnia symptoms could return, especially after the first couple of days. Other withdrawal symptoms, like the ones mentioned above, could make the temptation to go back on Doral very strong, but it is very dangerous to return to a drug after stopping use. Doing so might compel stronger, more frequent use that can lead to severe side effects and an unhealthy dependence on Doral.

Doctors can provide valuable information on how to avoid withdrawal symptoms when your body is not getting the quazepam it has come to associate with much-valued sleep.

When Doral Use Becomes Misuse

There is always the danger of misuse with any drug, and Doral is no exception. An addiction can happen to anyone, regardless of socioeconomic background, ethnicity, family history, or even mental health. Such factors can contribute to the development of addiction, but individually, there is no single “cause” for a person taking too many quazepam tablets.

If it happens, however, there are telltale signs. In addition to the severe side effects listed above, someone who is misusing Doral might experience the following:

  • Insisting on obtaining more pills
  • Needing to consume more Doral in order to feel the effects
  • Feeling like Doral is needed in order to function
  • Having cravings for continued use

In a best-case scenario, quazepam is consumed purely within the parameters of a prescription and then discontinued when a doctor feels that it has served its purpose. On the other hand, a person who can only experience happiness and peacefulness while taking Doral will soon be facing a number of challenges that impact their personal, professional, and social lives.

Talking to Someone Who Has Been Taking Too Much Doral

Concerned wife sitting with husband holding his arm and back

The earlier that conversation is had, the better. The addiction will not be as strong, and people who are confronted with the reality of their substance misuse sooner, rather than later, will have a much easier time looking for, and getting, help.

But, if Doral misuse has been going on for some time, then it may be harder to convince someone to get treatment (because, by that point, they have come to make a very strong psychological association between Doral and relief from insomnia). In the event that initial entreaties to stop taking drugs, or to consult a medical professional for help, are rebuffed, family members should talk to a doctor or treatment center that can recommend a professional interventionist.

Treating Doral Abuse

At a treatment facility, medical and mental health professionals will come up with a treatment plan to wean the patient off Doral if necessary, minimizing the discomfort by administering anti-anxiety and anticonvulsant drugs to keep the worst of the withdrawal effects at bay. Depending on the severity of the misuse, as well as a number of other factors (such as whether the patient has been abusing any other drugs, and the patient’s mental and medical health), this process can last for as little as a week, to as long as 4-5 weeks.

What follows then is a period of counseling, where a therapist will help the patient address the psychological issues behind the quazepam misuse. Such issues may be related to the insomnia that drove the initial consumption of Doral, but any other underlying causes behind the inability to sleep, and the inability to deal with the problem in a healthier way, will be addressed in counseling.

Addiction Treatment in Florida

Insomnia can be a frustrating, even debilitating condition. If someone you love is struggling with insomnia and subsequent substance misuse or substance use disorder, call Recovery First right now at . Our experienced and compassionate admissions navigators can help answer all of your questions, including those about insurance and payment options.

By calling us right now, we can help you gather information about the levels of addiction treatment we offer, as well as what you or your loved one can expect when coming to our facility.

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