How Long Do Benzodiazepines Stay in Your System?

Detection Timetable Depends on Many Variables

How long does Benzodiazephines last
Benzodiazephines Are Safe Taken As Directed. &copy Getty Images

If you try to estimate how long benzodiazepines are detectable in the body you have to consider many variables, including which kind drug test is being used. Benzodiazepines - also known as Ativan, Halcion. Librium - can be detected for a shorter time with some tests, but can be "visible" for up to three months in other tests.

The timetable for detecting benzodiazepines in the system is also dependent upon each individual's metabolism, body mass, age, hydration level, physical activity, health conditions and other factors, making it almost impossible to determine an exact time benzodiazepines will show up on a drug test.

The most significant factor influencing how long a benzodiazepine will be detected involves the elimination half-life of the particular benzodiazepine, which can vary greatly. for example, midazolam's (Halcion) half-life is quite short, and diazepam's (Valium) very long.

The following is an estimated range of times, or detection windows, during which benzodiazepines can be detected by various testing methods:

How Long Do Benzodiazepines Stay in Urine?

Benzodiazepines can be detected in a urine test for up to 1-6 weeks

How Long Do Benzodiazepines Remain in the Blood?

Blood tests for benzodiazepines can detect the drugs for up to 6-48 hours

How Long Can Benzodiazepines Be Detected in Saliva?

A saliva test can detect benzodiazepines for 1-10 days

How Long Do Benzodiazepines Remain in Hair?

Benzodiazepines, like many other drugs, can be detected with a hair follicle drug test for up to 90 days.

Important to Avoid Overdose

You need to know how long benzodiazepines remain in the system in order to make sure you don't end up taking an accidental overdose.

Benzodiazepines are central nervous system depressants that produce sedation, induce sleep, relieve anxiety and muscle spasms, and prevent seizures. Too much of the drug too quickly can cause an overdose.

Symptoms of an overdose of benzodiazepines include:

Benzodiazepines can also cause amnesia, hostility, irritability, and vivid or disturbing dreams.

Alprazolam and diazepam are the two most frequently encountered benzodiazepines on the illicit market, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.


American Association for Clinical Chemistry "Drugs of Abuse Testing." Lab Tests Online. Revised 2 January 2013.

Drug Enforcement Administration. "Benzodiazepines." Drug Fact Sheets Accessed December 2015

LabCorp, Inc. "Drugs of Abuse Reference Guide." Accessed March 2013.

OHS Health & Safety Services. "How long do drugs stay in your system?." Accessed March 2013.

Naltrexone - Treatment for Alcoholism and Addiction

Continue Reading