5 Dangerous Side Effects of Clonazepam

5 Dangerous Side Effects of Clonazepam

Clonazepam is actually a medicine to treat epilepsy. However, because of its calming effect, it is also often used as a sleep aid.

Unfortunately, this is not without problems. The first problem is that this remedy can also make you feel drowsy and sleepy during the day. The second problem is that you quickly become dependent on it.

If you are thinking about solving your Sleep problems? Best 7 Mindfulness Exercises & Tips Before Bed”>sleeping problem with Clonazepam or Rivotril, read this article carefully first. There are a lot of things you need to know before using this remedy.

What is Clonazepam?

Clonazepam is a medicine that belongs to the group of benzodiazepines. This medicine is also available under the name Rivotril.

The active ingredient in Rivotril is clonazepam, hence the generic name of this medicine: Clonazepam. This medicine belongs to a group of medicines called benzodiazepines.

Clonazepam pills

You may have heard about benzodiazepines many times, but are not sure exactly what the properties of these drugs are and how they work?

That is why I have tried to briefly summarize the effect of benzodiazepines.

Benzodiazepines are medicines that affect a certain substance in the brain that has a calming effect.

If your body produces too little of this substance, it can be supplemented by taking benzodiazepines.

This artificially replenishes this calming substance in the brain. As a result, you feel calmer and less anxious. That is why benzodiazepines are often prescribed for anxiety and insomnia.

Actually, Clonazepam was developed to treat epilepsy and muscle spasms.

However, due to its calming and anti-anxiety properties, it is also often prescribed for the following conditions:

Sleeping woman due to sleeping medication

A sleeping aid seems to be the perfect solution for many people: no more worrying before going to sleep, after a while, you feel an immense peace come over you and you fall into a deep sleep.

In the morning you feel that you have enjoyed a wonderful night’s sleep and you are as fresh as a daisy. Or not…?

In concrete terms, Clonazepam ensures that the nerves in your brain are much less stimulated. This makes your mind calmer and you become less anxious.

Nerves in the brain

This medicine also has the important properties of making you feel sleepy and relaxing your muscles. And these are, of course, important requirements to be able to fall asleep.

However, the major drawback of Clonazepam is that it is also responsible for reducing activity in the part of the brain that controls rational thinking, memory and emotions.

Perhaps you already understand that it is not so healthy to use Clonazepam as a sleep aid.

Woman with hand on her temple and nose

To fully inform you about Clonazepam, I also want to introduce you to 5 dangerous side effects of this drug.

Side Effects Of Clonazepam

There is absolutely no doubt that Clonazepam will help you if you have trouble sleeping. However, there are also a lot of side effects that make taking this drug not so interesting – and even dangerous.

Muscle weakness

Because Clonazepam has muscle relaxant properties, it can lead to muscle weakness.

If you take the drug in the evening as a sleep aid, it can lead to dangerous situations if you get out of bed for one reason or another.

Because your muscles feel weak, you have the feeling that you are not standing on your legs and it is easier to trip or fall.

Muscles of a shoulder

Drowsiness and concentration problems during the day

Clonazepam is a benzodiazepine that has medium to long-acting properties. You usually feel the effect of Clonazepam half an hour after taking it and can last for more than 12 hours.

The American Drug Prevention Center even indicates that even 50 hours after ingestion, traces of Clonazepam can still be found in the body.

It is therefore not at all surprising that you also feel the numbing effects of this drug during the day.

Many Clonazepam users complain of daytime sleepiness, drowsiness and loss of concentration. These side effects can be dangerous because you are much less likely to react to things in this condition.

sleepy construction worker

If you only occasionally use Clonazepam, it is even recommended not to drive a car for 72 hours after taking it.

Also, be careful with alcohol when you take Clonazepam. After all, alcohol enhances the effect of this drug, which can make you feel even more drowsy.


If you have just taken a tablet of Clonazepam, you may not remember everything that happened after taking it. In medical terms, this is called anterograde amnesia .

This amnesia can last from a few hours to 24 hours. This is annoying, but memory loss can also be quite dangerous in some cases.

Tree in the shape of a head that loses leaves


If you take Clonazepam for a long time, your body will become so used to it that the effect of this medicine will diminish. You will therefore always need larger doses to achieve the same effect.

Because of this, you can become quite addicted to this drug and experience very intense withdrawal symptoms if you decide to stop taking Clonazepam.

Withdrawal Symptoms

If you want to stop taking Clonazepam, it is very important that you taper off this drug slowly. After all, if you stop suddenly, you can suffer from very unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.

Man with hands over eyes and withdrawal symptoms

These can range from insomnia and general anxiety to irritability and even sensitivity to light, sound, and touch.

Your fear of certain things can also increase again and be even stronger than before you took this medicine.

If you suddenly stop taking this medicine, you will sleep worse again. After all, your entire system has become so used to this sedative that your brain transmits far fewer sleep signals to your body.

These withdrawal symptoms will naturally make you inclined to take the drug again, so that you actually end up in a vicious circle.

Man walks in a vicious circle

Experiences with Clonazepam

Jesse’s experience

My divorce has given me many sleepless nights not only figuratively but also literally. Because of the much worrying, I had trouble falling asleep and if I did manage to do this, I was wide awake again after a few hours.

Because I didn’t get enough sleep, I walked around like a zombie during the day. I soon realized that I had to intervene and visited my GP. He saw the seriousness of the situation and prescribed Rivotril for me. He urged me not to take this drug for too long.

Man lies awake in bed with hand against his forehead

Once the issues with my divorce were over, he warned me, I had to slowly taper off the dose of Rivotril. I took the drug for about 10 weeks and then tapered off. That worked out very well for me. Rivotril has helped me through a very difficult period in my life, but I am glad that I can now enjoy my night’s sleep without sleeping pills.

Kees’ experience

When I started Clonazepam 2 years ago, I was actually quite happy with it. I was able to fall asleep well, slept through the night and woke up rested in the morning.

Man wakes up and stretches

However, after a while, I started to feel quite sleepy during the day as well. In the morning I always worked hard, but just after noon I felt drowsy and sleepy and could barely concentrate on my work. I immediately made the connection with Clonazepam and decided to stop taking the drug.

Result: I could no longer sleep at all, became irritable, and suffered from headaches all day. The doctor prescribed me Clonazepam again but in a lighter dose. I still take this one now. I sleep quite well but I still have a sleepy feeling during the day. Still, I don’t dare to stop taking the drug because I really don’t want to experience the withdrawal symptoms a second time.

Man holds hand to forehead because he has a headache

Simone’s experience

Because I had been sleeping badly for a while, my doctor prescribed Clonazepam for me a few months ago. The first few days I really loved falling asleep without worrying.

My husband always works the night shift and usually comes home around 4 in the morning. Then I get up and have a little chat with him. After a while, however, my husband started to notice that I was very unsteady walking through the living room and often forgot things. It often happened that the next day I couldn’t remember our conversation at all. I really started to suffer from amnesia…

Woman with hand against the back of her head forgets things

After consultation with my doctor, I decided to taper off Clonazepam slowly. I sleep less well now, but the next day I can still remember the nighttime conversations with my husband. No more clonazepam for me…

Different opinions

As you can read, there are people who are quite satisfied with Clonazepam as a sleep aid. Others have had negative experiences with the use of this drug.

If you have trouble falling asleep at night and are considering using Clonazepam, it is important to weigh the pros and cons carefully.

Two stones balancing on another stone

Personally, I think that the benefits of a sleep aid certainly do not outweigh the drawbacks. I hope you are convinced that Clonazepam has a lot of side effects that can be not only annoying but also dangerous.

Reaching for sleep aids to enjoy a good night’s sleep may seem easy, but it really isn’t a good idea! Especially not because there is a perfect alternative to overcome your fears and insomnia without dangerous drugs.



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