Can Valium be used episodically for anxiety relief?

Sometimes I get really panicked when I can’t breathe. I have never taken Valium regularly, in fact, quite rarely. When I take one, my breathing relaxes, but my new doctors won’t prescribe it. They want Ativan, which I tried and it made my breathing worse. I was on Valium while in hospital (5 mg twice daily) for exacerbation and I was under the care of the COPD clinic doctors. My oxygen levels are usually between 96-99 even with Valium. Has anyone else used it?


Community Answers
  • michelle.vincent moderator
    1 year ago

    I know how you feel. Sometimes I get panicked when I can’t breathe, which makes it harder to breathe, so I panic even more. It’s a vicious cycle. My doctor put me on a medication that I take when I get that way and it calms me down immediately. It’s hydroxyzine, or Atarax. It’s an anxiety reducer as well as an antihistimine and isn’t addictive. I’ve only taken Valium (or diazepam) a few times but it also helped with my breathing and my anxiety. I understand that some meds are known for suppressing respiration, such as morphine, and I’ve seen a few reports online (so take it for what it’s worth) that Valium is one of those. Are your doctors worried about that? Or worried about combining Valium with your other COPD medications? Hopefully they will find another anti-anxiety pill that will help you better than Ativan. Good luck.

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