Medicinal drugs such as tranquilisers may have been prescribed for very good reasons but they can also cause health problems if used for long periods. Benzodiazepines are a form of tranquiliser and are thought to only help anxiety for about a month, after which you may find you need a higher dose to get the same effect and even then, your anxiety may increase or your sleeplessness return.

Benzodiazepines are depressant drugs, including diazepam (Valium), temazepam and clonazepam, which act on the central nervous system and slow down brain activity. They relax you, making you feel less tense and anxious but at the same time impair mental and physical activity and decrease self-control.

They can be highly addictive both physically and mentally and are often prescribed with caution to those who have a history of drug addiction. Physical dependency can occur when the drug is taken for long periods of time e.g. months or years. Abrupt discontinuation of the drug can result in withdrawal symptoms and in some cases seizures. It is not advised to stop this medication abruptly, instead a gradual reduction over a period of time (depending on the dose) is recommended.