Xanax Addiction Rehab
While Xanax is used safely by many people, there is a high risk of abuse with this prescribed benzodiazepine. Since it has such a high potential for addiction, doctors typically prescribe it only for short term use.
Unfortunately, even those who take it only as prescribed can find themselves with a severe problem. The effects of Xanax are intense, although short-lived, making it easy to take more often than prescribed.
What is Xanax?
Xanax, also known as alprazolam, is the most prescribed psychiatric drug in the United States. It is prescribed by doctors to treat conditions such as anxiety, panic attack disorder, and insomnia. Xanax is considered a sedative and decreases a person’s alertness and response time. Even when used for a short time, a person can develop a tolerance.
When this happens, taking the same amount no longer has the same effects, and a person may increase their dosage. Since it’s prescribed by a doctor many view Xanax as safe, but just like prescription opioids, Xanax can be extremely dangerous for some people.
How Does Xanax Work?
Xanax is a central nervous system depressant which means that it works on the brain and the nerves to produce a feeling of calm and tranquility. It bonds to transmitters in the brain and enhances the effects of a naturally occurring chemical in the body called GABA.
When taking Xanax, the brain decreases the amount of GABA and reduces the barrier between dopamine and its receptors in the brain. This allows the brain to receive more dopamine and creates a surge causing some people to feel a euphoric rush. This feeling is what people seek when abusing Xanax. Over time the brain depends on the artificial flood of dopamine and releases less of it on its own.
What are the Side Effects of Xanax?
Xanax can cause many side effects, even when taken as prescribed. If a large dose is taken, it can cause severe sedation with effects lasting not just hours but days. The sedative effects of Xanax can make it dangerous for a person to operate equipment or even drive. When taken long term, it can cause changes to the brain and change how the brain responds to certain stimuli.
It can also cause depression and cognitive impairment and increases a person’s risk of dementia. Someone abusing Xanax long term may become aggressive or hostile and may begin to act impulsively. The risk of psychosis also increases with long term use.
Xanax Addiction Signs
Xanax can be highly addictive, especially for someone who has a history of substance abuse disorder or alcoholism. Those who use Xanax for anxiety also have a higher risk of dependence as they can begin to rely on it to keep their symptoms under control. When someone is abusing Xanax there are many signs.
Often a person will seem more tired than usual and become more withdrawn. Abusing Xanax can cause a person to lose interest in activities that they normally engage in. They may also start to miss school or work more often. Other signs that a person may have a problem with Xanax include:
- Excessive drowsiness
- Slurred speech
- Sleeping for longer than usual
- Dry mouth
- Nausea or vomiting
- Yellowing of the eyes or skin (jaundice)
- Impaired memory
- Suicidal thoughts
Since the effects of Xanax are short-lived, it is often abused with other drugs such as alcohol or opioids. Combing drugs, especially drugs that are also central nervous system depressants, can have serious consequences. This can result in serious side effects such as decreased respiration rate, respiratory arrest, and even death.
Withdrawal Symptoms of Xanax
Xanax can cause serious withdrawal symptoms, such as seizures, especially when a person suddenly stops using it. It is essential that detox is done under supervision and that the dose is lowered gradually. If a person has been using Xanax for an extended period of time, the chances of experiencing withdrawal symptoms are even greater.
If you or someone that you love is abusing Xanax the time to seek help is now. Please don’t wait until there are serious consequences. At Daybreak Treatment Solutions, our professional staff can help you to break the cycle of addiction and get your life back on track. Contact us today and let us show you how we can help!