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Xanax Addiction

What is Xanax?

Xanax (also know as Alprazolam) exists in a family of drugs known as benzodiazepines.   It is highly potent and helps in the treatment of anxiety, panic disorder, and depression. In past years, Xanax has been the single most prescribed psychiatric medicine only in the United States, and its abrupt discontinuation is not recommended in any case due to the severe withdrawal symptoms attached to it. The medication is often prescribed to mature individuals over the age of 18. When used at its proper dosage and for short periods of time, Xanax can be safe.  Unfortunately, many of those who are prescribed Xanax quickly develop a dependence and seek to increase their dosage at a rapid rate, this can lead to addiction.  Xanax is also commonly sold on the street, it is frequently abused by teenagers and college students.  They use it for its euphoric effects and the sense of ease that it promotes within their lives.  Despite its intended benefits, Xanax is one of the most dangerous drugs present within US society and the risks associated with prolonged abuse are significant.

What are the side effects?

Several potential risks arise due to overuse and non-prescribed use or by mixing Xanax with other drugs like alcohol. It is very important that when prescribed xanax, the user does not stray from the prescribed dosage or consume any other substances that may increase or alter the effects of Xanax. Common side effects of Xanax abuse include:

  • Drowsiness and unsteady behavior
  • Forgetfulness
  • Euphoria
  • Irritation and lethargy
  • Discouragement and lack of motivation
  • Lack of focus and judging ability
  • Rapid mood swings
  • Nausea and painful urination
  • Dry mouth
  • Sense of detachment and unpleasant mouth odor
  • Strange facial expressions
  • Confusion, itching and blood vomiting
  • Feelings of dying and suicidal thoughts
  • Swollen joints, fever, headache and hyperventilation
  • Loss of control and unstable heartbeat
  • Unstable breathing, pale eyes and wheezing
  • Sensory distortion and fainting
  • Senseless speech & chest infection or pain
  • Memory loss and loss of control on legs
  • Shivering, restlessness and loss of pleasure
  • Coma or death
  • Muscle twitching
  • Muscle cramps
  • Increased libido
  • Menstrual disorders
  • Tinnitus

What are the withdrawal symptoms?

Xanax is usually categorized as sedative-hypnotic.  In the USA, Xanax abuse outnumbered abuse of other drugs’ including cocaine, heroine, etc. The severity and harshness of withdrawal symptoms depend upon the nature & length of use of the drug; it also depends upon the health of the patient, poor general health tends to escalate the intensity of symptoms. The feeling of high anxiety is the first and foremost symptom which arises at the initial stage. Other common withdrawal symptoms of Xanax include:

  • Apprehension
  • Pessimism.
  • Irritability
  • Nightmares
  • Abrupt muscles twitching
  • Flu or nausea
  • Repetitive worrisome thoughts.
  • Paranoia.
  • Poor concentration
  • Seizures

Treatment

Studies show that Xanax abuse is not just an issue within the adult population, teenagers make up a large part of the population of those addicted to Xanax and other benzodiazepines. When one desires to break from the habit of Xanax addiction, they must seek professional help immediately.

Detox from Xanax is very dangerous and can result in seizures, coma, and even death if not properly monitored.  It is important to be monitored through the entire detox process so it is recommended that the addict check in to a certified detox facility.  After going through clinical detox, it can still take several months to regain presence of mind and a balanced lifestyle.  Because of this, it is recommended that those who are in the early recovery process attend an extended care outpatient facility as well as an inpatient residential treatment center.