Temazepam | Side Effects, Dosage, Uses & More
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Generic Name:

temazepam, Oral capsule

All Brands

  • Restoril
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Highlights for temazepam

Oral capsule
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Temazepam is used for the short-term treatment of insomnia.  

2

This drug comes as a capsule you take by mouth.  

3

Temazepam is available as a brand-name drug called Restoril. It’s also available as a generic drug.

4

The more common side effects of this drug include dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, and tiredness.  

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In some cases, temazepam can cause serious side effects, including memory loss and severe allergic reaction. These side effects can also include abnormal thoughts and behaviors. Some people who have taken this drug have performed activities while they weren’t completely conscious. Afterward, these people had no memory of doing the activities.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Abnormal thoughts and behavior

Temazepam can cause abnormal thoughts and behavior. Some people, while taking this drug have driven, prepared and ate food, made phone calls, or had sex at times when they were not completely conscious. Call your doctor immediately if you develop any of these symptoms.

Severe allergic reaction

This drug can sometimes cause a severe allergic reaction. Call 9-1-1 or go to the emergency room right away if you have swelling of your face, tongue, or throat or you have trouble breathing. A severe allergic reaction may cause death. You shouldn’t take this medication again if you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to it.

Significant drowsiness

Even if you take temazepam as prescribed, you may still have significant drowsiness and impairment the next day. You shouldn’t drive or do other activities for which you need to be alert until you feel fully awake.

Withdrawal

You may have withdrawal symptoms if you stop taking temazepam suddenly. Withdrawal symptoms can be serious and include seizures. Mild withdrawal symptoms include depressed mood and trouble sleeping. Talk to your doctor before you stop taking this drug.

Drug features

Temazepam is a controlled substance. It’s available as a capsule you take by mouth. It’s also available as a generic drug. Generic drugs usually cost less. Talk to your doctor to see if the generic version will work for you.

Temazepam may be used as part of a combination therapy. This means you may need to take it with other medications.

Why it's used

Temazepam is used for the short-term treatment of insomnia. This is a sleep problem that includes trouble falling asleep as well as waking up often during the night.

How it works

Temazepam belongs to a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way.

More Details

How it works

Temazepam belongs to a class of drugs called benzodiazepines. A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. These drugs are often used to treat similar conditions.

Temazepam works by increasing the action of a substance in your body called gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA sends signals through your nervous system that can improve sleep. When you take temazepam, the effects of GABA are increased in your body.

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temazepam Side Effects

Oral capsule

More common side effects

The more common side effects of temazepam can include:

  • drowsiness

  • headache

  • tiredness

  • nervousness

  • dizziness

  • nausea

If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. If they’re more severe or don’t go away, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Serious side effects

Call your doctor right away if you have serious side effects. Call 9-1-1 if your symptoms feel life-threatening or if you think you’re having a medical emergency. Serious side effects and their symptoms can include the following:

  • Doing things while not completely conscious, such as:

    • eating
    • talking
    • having sex
    • driving a car
  • Abnormal thoughts and behavior. Symptoms can include:

    • behavior that is more outgoing and aggressive than normal
    • confusion
    • agitation
    • hallucinations
    • worsened depression
    • suicidal thoughts or actions
  • Memory loss

  • Anxiety

  • Severe allergic reaction. Symptoms can include:

    • swelling of the tongue or throat
    • trouble breathing
    • nausea
    • vomiting
Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

This drug causes drowsiness and may cause dizziness. You should not take temazepam unless you are able to stay in bed and get a full night’s sleep (7–8 hours) before you must be active again. This drug should be taken right before you get in bed.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
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temazepam May Interact with Other Medications

Oral capsule

Temazepam can interact with other medications, vitamins, or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works. This can be harmful or prevent the drug from working well.

To help avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Be sure to tell your doctor about all medications, vitamins, or herbs you’re taking. To find out how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Alcohol interaction

The use of drinks that contain alcohol can increase your risk of side effects such as drowsiness, sleepiness, confusion and doing activities in your sleep without knowing. Do not take temazepam if you drink alcohol.

Medications that might interact with this drug

Interactions that increase your risk of side effects

Taking temazepam with certain drugs increases your risk of side effects. Taking these drugs with temazepam can increase your risk of drowsiness. Examples of these drugs include:

  • Phenothiazenes, such as chlorpromazine, fluphenazine, promethazine, and thioridazine.
  • Barbiturates, such as amobarbital, butabarbital, and pentobarbital.
  • Sedatives or hypnotics, such as eszopiclone, zaleplon, and zolpidem. 
  • Anxiolytics, such as alprazolam, clonazepam, lorazepam, midazolam, and triazolam.
  • Narcotic analgesics, such as morphine and hydrocodone.
  • Sedative antihistamines, such as brompheniramine, chlorpheniramine, dimenhydrinate, diphenhydramine, and doxylamine.
  • Anesthetics, such as etomidate, propofol, and ketamine.
  • Antidepressants, such as fluvoxamine, fluoxetine, and nefazodone.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.
Temazepam warnings
depressed mood
People with depressed mood

If you have been diagnosed with depression, you may be at an increased risk of worsening depression and suicidal thoughts while you take this drug. Your doctor should prescribe the lowest dose necessary to help you with your sleep problems.

Pregnant women
Pregnant women

Temazepam is a category X pregnancy drug. Category X drugs should never be used during pregnancy. Women of childbearing age should use reliable birth control while taking this drug.

breast-feeding
Women who are breast-feeding

It isn’t known whether temazepam is excreted in breast milk. Talk to your doctor if you breast-feed your child. You may need to decide whether to stop breast-feeding or stop taking this medication.

seniors
For seniors

As you age, your body processes drugs more slowly. Because of that, it’s recommended that your maximum starting dose of temazepam doesn’t exceed 7.5 mg once per day, immediately before bedtime.

children
For children

This medication hasn’t been studied in children. It shouldn’t be used in people younger than 18 years.

call the doctor
When to call the doctor

Call your doctor if you notice that you still have problems sleeping while taking this medication.

prior authorization
Insurance

Temazepam can cause a severe allergic reaction. Symptoms can include:

  • swelling of your tongue or throat
  • trouble breathing
  • nausea
  • vomiting 

If you have an allergic reaction, call your doctor or local poison control center right away. If your symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room. 

Don’t take this drug again if you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to it. Taking it again could be fatal (cause death).

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How to Take temazepam (Dosage)

Oral capsule

All possible dosages and drug forms may not be included here. Your dosage, drug form, and how often you take the drug will depend on: 

  • your age
  • the condition being treated
  • how severe your condition is
  • other medical conditions you have
  • how you react to the first dose

What are you taking this medication for?

Insomnia

Generic: temazepam

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 7.5 mg, 15 mg, 22.5 mg, 30 mg

Brand: Restoril

Form: Oral capsule
Strengths: 7.5 mg, 15 mg, 22.5 mg, 30 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18–64 years)
  • The usual starting dose is 15 mg per day, taken right before bedtime
  • Your dose may range between 7.5 mg per day and 30 mg per day, taken right before bedtime.
Child dosage (ages 0–17 years)

It hasn’t been confirmed that temazepam is safe and effective for use in people younger than 18 years.

Senior dosage (ages 65 years and older)

The usual dose is 7.5 mg per day, taken right before bedtime.

Warnings

Taking a dose higher than what your doctor prescribed increases your risk of extreme drowsiness.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Pharmacist's Advice
Healthline Pharmacist Editorial Team

Temazepam comes with serious risks if you don’t take it as prescribed.

If you stop taking the drug suddenly or don’t take it at all

If you don’t take temazepam at all, your sleep problems may not get better. You may experience withdrawal if you suddenly stop taking temazepam. Symptoms of withdrawal can include:

  • depressed mood
  • trouble sleeping
  • seizure

If you miss doses or don’t take the drug on schedule

If you miss a dose, you may not sleep as well as you would if you took the drug. This drug should be taken immediately before bedtime. If you take it too early, you may feel sleepy before your bedtime. If you take the medication too late, your risk of drowsiness the next morning increases.

If you take too much

You could have dangerous levels of the drug in your body. Symptoms can range from excessive drowsiness to coma. If you think you’ve taken too much of this drug, call your doctor or local poison control center. If your symptoms are severe, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency room right away.

What to do if you miss a dose

If you don’t take your medication right before bedtime and remember to take it with less than 7 or 8 hours left to sleep, don’t take the medication.

How to tell if the drug is working

You should see an improvement in your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.

Temazepam is used for short-term treatment.

Important considerations for taking temazepam
timing
Take temazepam immediately before bedtime
storage
Store this drug carefully
See Details
medication is refillable
A prescription for this medication is refillable
See Details
travel
Travel
See Details
not usually stocked
Not every pharmacy stocks this drug. When filling your prescription, be sure to call ahead
prior authorization
Insurance
See Details

Store this drug carefully

  • Store temazepam between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C). Keep it away from light.
  • Don’t store this medication in moist or damp areas, such as bathrooms.

A prescription for this medication is refillable

You should not need a new prescription for this medication to be refilled. Your doctor will write the number of refills authorized on your prescription.

Travel

When traveling with your medication:

  • Always carry your medication with you. When flying, never put it into a checked bag. Keep it in your carry-on bag.
  • Don’t worry about airport x-ray machines. They can’t hurt your medication.
  • You may need to show airport staff the pharmacy label for your medication. Always carry the original prescription-labeled box with you.
  • Don’t put this medication in your car’s glove compartment or leave it in the car. Be sure to avoid doing this when the weather is very hot or very cold.

Insurance

Many insurance companies require a prior authorization for this drug. This means your doctor will need to get approval from your insurance company before your insurance company will pay for the prescription.

Are there any alternatives?

There are other drugs available to treat your condition. Some may be better suited for you than others. Talk to your doctor about other drug options that may work for you.

What does the pill look like?

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How Much Does temazepam Cost?

Oral capsule

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Lowest price for temazepam

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These prices represent the lowest priced national pharmacies for temazepam on GoodRx. They may be lower than your insurance.

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Content developed in collaboration with University of Illinois-Chicago, Drug Information Group

Medically reviewed by Creighton University, Center for Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice on November 4, 2015

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.
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