Before you begin taking a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should take this medication.
Dependence/withdrawal: Physical dependence (a need to take regular doses to prevent physical symptoms) has been associated with benzodiazepines such as chlordiazepoxide. Severe withdrawal symptoms may occur if the dose is significantly reduced or suddenly discontinued. These symptoms include seizures, irritability, nervousness, sleep problems, agitation, tremors, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, vomiting, memory impairment, headache, muscle pain, extreme anxiety, tension, restlessness, and confusion. Reducing the dose gradually under medical supervision can help prevent or decrease these withdrawal symptoms.
Drowsiness/reduced alertness: Because chlordiazepoxide causes drowsiness and sedation, do not engage in activities requiring mental alertness, judgment, and physical coordination (such as driving or operating machinery) while taking it. This is particularly true when first starting the medication and until you have established that chlordiazepoxide does not affect you in this way. Avoid alcohol because it can increase the drowsy effect of the medication.
Medical conditions: Chlordiazepoxide is not recommended for people with depression or psychosis. You should not take chlordiazepoxide if you are addicted to alcohol or other medications except in rare situations under medical supervision.
Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Breast-feeding: This medication may pass into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking chlordiazepoxide, it may affect your baby. This medication is not recommended for breast-feeding women.
Seniors: Seniors may be at increased risk for the drowsiness and impaired coordination effects of this medication. You should use extra caution, for example, when getting up during the night.