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What is Clonazepam?

Clonazepam is used to treat seizures in both adults and children. It also helps treat panic disorder (including agoraphobia) in adults.

Clonazepam oral tablet is a prescription medication sold under the brand name Klonopin. It is also available as a generic medication.

Clonazepam is available as both an oral tablet and an oral disintegrating (dissolving) tablet. You can order clonazepam online or from a local pharmacy store.

Important Information

Clonazepam can slow down or stop your breathing, especially if you have recently used alcohol, an opioid medicine, or other drugs that can slow your breathing.

Clonazepam misuse can result in addiction, overdose, or death. Never give clonazepam to another person. It is illegal to sell or distribute clonazepam.

While taking clonazepam, some people experience suicidal thoughts. You must keep an eye out for any changes in your mood or symptoms. Inform your doctor of any new or worsening symptoms.

If you suddenly stop using clonazepam, you may experience increased seizures or unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.

What to know before taking clonazepam?

Do not take clonazepam if you have

  • Severe liver disease
  • Narrow-angle glaucoma
  • A history of allergic reaction to benzodiazepines, such as alprazolam, diazepam, lorazepam, Ativan, Restoril, Tranxene, Valium, Versed, Xanax, and others)

To ensure that clonazepam is safe for you, inform your doctor if you have ever had:

  • Breathing issues
  • Kidney or liver disease
  • Porphyria
  • Mood disorders, depression, or suicidal thoughts or behavior

When taking seizure medication, some people have suicidal thoughts. At regular check-ups, your doctor should monitor your progress. Your family or other caregivers should also be aware of any changes in your mood or symptoms.

If a person is pregnant or intends to become pregnant, they should consult with their doctor. If you are pregnant, do not begin or stop taking seizure medication without first consulting your doctor. Having seizures can be harmful to the mother and the baby during pregnancy. If you become pregnant, notify your doctor immediately. 

Clonazepam passes through breast milk and can cause side effects in a breastfed child. If you are breastfeeding your child, you should consult your doctor. You may have to choose between breastfeeding and stopping the medication.

Do not give clonazepam to a child without first consulting a doctor. Clonazepam is not for the treatment of panic disorder in people under the age of 18.

How to take clonazepam?

Take clonazepam as directed by your doctor. Your doctor may require you to change your dose from time to time. Never take more than the recommended dose or take it for longer than the recommended time. 

Never give clonazepam to someone else, especially if they have a history of drug abuse or addiction. Clonazepam misuse can result in addiction, overdose, or death. It is illegal to sell or distribute clonazepam. However, you can buy clonazepam online with a prescription.

Do not stop taking clonazepam suddenly, even if you feel fine. Abruptly stopping could result in more seizures or unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. To taper your dose, follow your doctor’s instructions.

You should swallow the regular tablet whole with a full glass of water.

In children, clonazepam doses are calculated based on their weight. If your child gains or loses weight, their dose requirements may change.

Only take an orally disintegrating tablet out of the package when you are ready to use it. Without chewing, place the tablet in your mouth and allow it to dissolve. Swallow the tablet several times as it dissolves.

Your doctor may need to check on you on a regular basis to see how you are doing.

If clonazepam does not seem to be working as well in treating your seizures or panic attacks, contact your doctor.

Clonazepam dosage

Dosage for panic disorder

Adult dosage (ages 18 to 64 years)

Typical starting dose: Take 0.25 mg twice a day

Dose increases: After three days, a doctor may increase the dose to 0.5 mg twice per day.

Maximum dose: 4 mg per day

Dosage for seizures

Adult dosage (ages 18 to 64 years)

Typical starting dose: Take 0.5 mg three times per day

Dose increases: A doctor may gradually increase a patient’s dose by 0.5 to 1 mg every three days until their seizures are under control.

Maximum daily dose: 20 mg, taken in divided doses

Child dosage (ages 11 to 17 years)

Typical starting dose: 0.5 mg three times per day

Dose increases: A doctor may increase the dosage by 0.5 mg to 1 mg every three days until a child’s seizures are under control.

Maximum daily dose: 20 mg, taken in divided doses

Overdose

Symptoms of an overdose of this medicine can include:

  • Confusion
  • Sleepiness or drowsiness
  • The trouble with coordination or slow reflexes
  • Coma (being unconscious for a long time)

What to avoid while using clonazepam?

The use of alcoholic beverages can increase a person’s risk of clonazepam’s sedative effects. Clonazepam can slow down a  person’s reflexes, impair their judgment, and make them sleepy. This can be dangerous. If a person consumes alcohol, they should consult their doctor.

This type of medication can cause the brain to slow down and interfere with a person’s judgment, thinking, and reaction times. People should not drive, operate machinery, or engage in other activities that require alertness until they know how this medication affects them.

Clonazepam side effects

Clonazepam can cause your breathing to slow or stop, especially if you have recently taken an opioid medication, alcohol, or used other drugs that slow your breathing.

Tell your doctor if you have developed any new or worsening symptoms such as anxiety, panic attacks, mood or behavior changes, trouble sleeping, or if you feel irritable, impulsive, hostile, agitated, restless, aggressive, more depressed, hyperactive (mentally or physically), or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.

Common clonazepam side effects may include:

  • Feeling tired or depressed
  • Drowsiness, dizziness
  • Memory problems
  • Problems with walking or coordination

Serious side effects

  • Severe drowsiness
  • New or worsening seizures
  • Nightmares, hallucinations
  • Weak or shallow breathing
  • Unusual changes in mood or behavior
  • Unusual or involuntary eye movements
  • Thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself

What drugs can interact with clonazepam?

Combining clonazepam with other drugs that cause drowsiness or slow breathing can result in dangerous side effects or death. Before taking an opioid medication, a sleeping pill, a muscle relaxant, or medicine for anxiety or seizures, consult your doctor.

You should tell your doctor about all other medicines you are taking, especially phenytoin or valproic acid. 

Drugs that may interact with clonazepam include:

  • Opioids, such as codeine and hydrocodone
  • Benzodiazepines, such as lorazepam, triazolam, and midazolam
  • Barbiturate and nonbarbiturate sleep medicines, such as amobarbital, butabarbital, eszopiclone, pentobarbital, zaleplon, and zolpidem
  • Other medicines used to treat anxiety, such as buspirone and hydroxyzine
  • Tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline and nortriptyline
  • Other medication used to treat seizures, such as pregabalin and gabapentin.