What Do Ativan Pills Look Like?

Lorazepam (brand name Ativan) pills are white in color. Typically offered in a round shape, the imprint on the pill depends on the manufacturer.

Ativan is available in pill form and may be offered in certain colors with varying imprints depending on the manufacturer. 

Depending on the doses of Ativan prescribed to you by your healthcare provider, the lorazepam tablet’s appearance may vary from prescription to prescription.

Lorazepam is a benzodiazepine prescription drug used to help treat panic attacks caused by anxiety disorders such as panic disorder. Additionally, Ativan may be used to treat alcohol withdrawal and insomnia.

Benzodiazepines such as Ativan can lead to life-threatening health concerns when abused. Ativan is a Schedule IV controlled substance with the potential for abuse and physical dependence.

What Do Ativan Pills Look Like?

Ativan is a central nervous system (CNS) depressant prescribed as an anti-anxiety short-term form of treatment. The drug works by enhancing the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and providing relaxation and sedative effects.

The half-life of Ativan is around 12 hours. Your prescribing doctor will determine which dosage of Ativan you require, which plays a role in what each Ativan pill looks like.


Depending on the dosage form, an Ativan pill may be prescribed to you as a 0.5 mg, 1 mg, or 2 mg tablet. Although there are different manufacturers, lorazepam pills are offered in the color white with unique imprints.


The imprints of Ativan range in number and letters depending on the manufacturer. For instance, some of the imprints you may find on Ativan pills include:

  • the letter M on one side and the number 321 on the other for a 0.5 mg pill
  • RX 7 on one side and no imprint on the other side of a 0.5 mg pill
  • MYLAN on one side and the number 457 on the other side for a 1 mg pill
  • MP 96 on one side and no imprint on the other side of a 1 mg pill
  • the letters EP and the number 906 on the other side for a 2 mg pill
  • the letters MP and the number 96 on the other side of a 2 mg pill

Color & Shape

Ativan is offered in the color white with all legal prescription pills. As for the shape, most Ativan pills are round. However, there are some pills that are pentagonal or 5-sided, which are also white in color.

Side Effects Of Ativan

Because Ativan is a CNS depressant, there are side effects associated with the prescription medication.

Common Side Effects

Common side effects of Ativan, according to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), may include:

  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • dry mouth
  • constipation
  • sedation
  • feelings of euphoria
  • nausea
  • blurred vision
  • memory impairment

In addition, those who stop taking Ativan “cold turkey” may experience severe Ativan withdrawal symptoms.

Dangers Of Ativan Abuse

Serious side effects can occur in those who abuse this benzodiazepine, which means taking the drug in higher doses than prescribed, without a prescription, or in combination with other drugs or alcohol.

Drug Interactions

Those who take Ativan should avoid other substances and drugs which can interact and cause allergic reactions. Do not combine the following with Ativan before speaking with your prescribing doctor:

  • alcohol
  • antihistamines
  • muscle relaxants
  • opioids
  • supplements
  • other benzodiazepines such as alprazolam (Xanax) and diazepam (Valium)
  • antidepressants

Risk Of Worsened Conditions

Those who take Ativan may find their medical condition worsening over time.

Underlying conditions include those which cause breathing difficulties such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and sleep apnea. Additionally, those with glaucoma or a history of liver or heart disease should avoid Ativan.

Women who are breastfeeding may pass the drug to the baby via breast milk. If you are pregnant and taking Ativan, contact your doctor right away.

Ativan Overdose

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), symptoms of an Ativan overdose may include:

  • impaired coordination
  • slowed reflexes
  • low blood pressure
  • confusion
  • respiratory depression

Those taking higher doses of the drug may be at risk of overdose as well as those who mix benzos with opioids or other depressants. If you suspect an overdose has taken place, contact 911 immediately and seek urgent medical help.

Treating Prescription Drug Abuse

At Ohio Recovery Center, we provide various treatment options, including detoxification, evidence-based practices, and inpatient care, to address prescription drug addiction. 

To learn more about how our healthcare professionals can help you or a loved one, please contact us today.

  1. Drug Enforcement Administration https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2020-06/Benzodiazepenes-2020_1.pdf
  2. Food and Drug Administration https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2021/017794s048lbl.pdf
  3. National Alliance on Mental Illness https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Treatments/Mental-Health-Medications/Types-of-Medication/Lorazepam-(Ativan)
  4. National Library of Medicine: DailyMed https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=89057c93-8155-4040-acec-64e877bd2b4c
  5. National Library of Medicine: MedlinePlus https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a682053.html
  6. National Library of Medicine: StatPearls https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK532890/

Written by Ohio Recovery Center Editorial Team

Published on: August 21, 2023

© 2024 Ohio Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

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