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Side Effects Of Temazepam (Restoril) Abuse And Addiction

Dr. Ted Bender, Ph.D., LCDC

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Ted Bender, Ph.D., LCDC

April 15, 2019

Temazepam abuse increases the risk of side effects like memory loss, depression, and difficulty breathing. It can also lead to overdose, dependence, and addiction, which negatively affects many areas of a person’s life and health.

A benzodiazepine sleep medication marketed as Restoril, temazepam is usually prescribed for seven to 10 days. It functions by enhancing the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain, a chemical responsible for regulating brain activity. This reduces anxiety levels to help a person sleep.

The relaxation produced by temazepam leads some people to abuse the drug, taking it in excess or outside of prescription guidelines. Even with regular use, temazepam may elicit side effects, and the risk of adverse reactions increases when it is abused.

Side Effects Of Temazepam (Restoril) Use

The most common side effects of temazepam (Restoril) use are drowsiness and headaches. These symptoms may persist the following day as a groggy hangover, especially following a large dose.

Temazepam has both physical and psychological side effects.

Physical side effects of temazepam include:

  • nausea and vomiting
  • dizziness
  • dry mouth
  • diarrhea
  • stomach pain or discomfort
  • weakness
  • blurred vision
  • vertigo
  • rash or hives
  • swelling of face and mouth
  • difficulty breathing

Psychological side effects of temazepam include:

  • nervousness
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • euphoria
  • confusion
  • nightmares
  • amnesia

Some people sleepwalk when taking Restoril and engage in activities like driving or having sex that they do not remember later. This can be very dangerous because they may not be fully awake while doing these things, and put themselves and others at risk.

Temazepam has been linked to a slowing of movement or physical reactions (psychomotor impairment). It may also cause difficulty remembering, learning, concentrating, or making decisions (cognitive impairment).

Long-Term Effects Of Temazepam (Restoril) Abuse

Temazepam is not intended for long-term use because most people quickly develop a tolerance to it. This means that they require a higher dose to feel the same effect. Some individuals abuse temazepam by increasing their dosage or taking it more often against a doctor’s advice.

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Taking Restoril for a prolonged period can cause it to build up in someone’s system. Benzodiazepines are stored in body fat if taken in excess, which means that the more a person takes, the more of the drug is present in their body. This raises the risk of overdose.

Excessive temazepam use also makes it likely that an individual will become physically dependent on it. This often leads to a mental addiction or craving for Restoril despite it being ineffective or causing adverse reactions.

If someone is dependent on Restoril and attempts to stop taking it, they will experience withdrawal symptoms. These can range from insomnia and anxiety to convulsions and seizures, which can be deadly.

Signs Of Temazepam (Restoril) Addiction

If a person is experiencing many side effects of temazepam (Restoril) use and continuing to take the drug, it is possible that they have developed an addiction. This can have devastating effects on many areas of a person’s life, from personal relationships to work performance.

Signs of temazepam addiction may be:

  • secretive behavior
  • taking more temazepam than prescribed
  • multiple prescriptions from different doctors (doctor shopping)
  • promises to reduce or stop use but an inability to do so
  • a significant amount of time spent taking or seeking temazepam
  • needing temazepam to function normally
  • financial difficulty
  • decreased social activity
  • poor performance at work or school
  • constant sedation or drowsiness
  • multiple adverse side effects

Treating Temazepam (Restoril) Addiction

Many people with temazepam (Restoril) addiction find healing through a comprehensive inpatient rehab program. These programs often begin with medically supervised detox that monitors a person’s vital functions as they rid their body of Restoril.

The best inpatient addiction treatment is individualized, taking into account many factors that led to addiction as well as how addiction has affected a person’s life and health. Treatment consists of various therapies that teach coping skills, healthy habits, and relapse prevention.

U.S. National Library of Medicine: DailyMed - LABEL: RESTORIL temazepam capsule

U.S. National Library of Medicine: MedlinePlus - Temazepam

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