Xanax is at the heart of the issues involving prescription drug addiction in the United States. The drug is taken to relieve people from anxiety and panic disorders, although it is often misused due to the calming effects and tranquil high it can provide.
If you or someone you know is addicted to Xanax, seek help before the addiction worsens. Rehabnear has trained teams of medical experts who understand the difficulties of living with Xanax addiction. Enrolling in a rehabilitation program helps many people remove Xanax addiction from their lives while also treating any mental illnesses or disorders that they might have, including panic attacks or anxiety.
What Is Xanax?
Xanax is the brand name for alprazolam, a drug which helps people with anxiety and panic disorders manage their symptoms. Alprazolam and Xanax are classified as a benzodiazepine, which are psychoactive drugs that produce a calming effect for the brain and central nervous system. Benzodiazepines enhances the effects of GABA, a chemical in the body that helps people experience a tranquil state. Xanax should be taken orally. The dosage is based on a patient’s medical condition, age and response to treatment. If the dose is small but the drug’s effects are not strong enough, doctors might increase the dose to produce the desired outcome. However, regular Xanax consumption might cause withdrawal symptoms, especially if the drug is taken for a long time or in high doses.
Withdrawal symptoms are one of the most common signs that a person is addicted to a drug, and Xanax is no exception. Since the drug has the potential to be addictive and cause a dependence for people, it should only be taken as prescribed by a doctor. Even if a person follows their doctor’s orders, addiction is still possible, although it is less likely to occur than when the drug is misused. To prevent severe withdrawal symptoms, doctors often gradually reduce the dosage until a person’s body completely readjusts to no longer needing Xanax.
Alternative Names for Xanax
Since Xanax is an extremely popular prescription drug, it is often sold and taken illegally. Since the main effect is calming the central nervous system, many people utilize Xanax to experience a high commonly associated with alcohol or other depressants. Non-prescription, recreational use of the drug is most popular among young men between the ages of 18 and 25, according to the 2013 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. More than 10 percent of people in the same age bracket and demographic misused the medication, and some people even mixed it with alcohol, opiates or painkillers.
Many people take Xanax with a doctor’s prescription, but the most common way to take the drug recreationally is by obtaining the drug from someone who has a prescription. This person is known as an intermediary, and they sometimes obtain the drug through a prescription or through a private link to a pharmaceutical supplier and then they resell the medication at a higher price. Because Xanax is common for recreational use, the drug has quite a few popular street names, including:
- Blue footballs
- School Bus
- Bicycle parts
- Yellow boys
- White boys
- White girls
Xanax also makes a number of pop culture appearances, from song lyrics to movie references. Sadly, the drug is linked to a number of celebrity deaths, including Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston and Heath Ledger.
Xanax Dosage Amounts
Xanax pills come in a variety of doses, from 0.25 mg to 2 mg. Doctors typically start patients with the smallest dose to avoid the potential for addiction and withdrawal symptoms when the prescription ends. If the drug has little or no effect in treating a patient’s psychological disorder, the dosage may slightly increase. Many medical experts do not recommend exceeding 4 mg in a 24-hour period, though some panic disorder patients who suffer from extreme issues are prescribed 10 mg per day to control their attacks. Some people take a very low dosage, between 0.25 mg and 0.5 mg, as a sleep aid, but this is not recommended because it lowers the quality of sleep and often leaves people feeling fatigue when they wake up. Xanax is not a drug people often overdose from on its own, but it can be dangerous if mixed with other depressants, such as alcohol.
Is Xanax Addictive?
“Is Xanax addictive?” is one of the most common questions asked regarding this prescription drug. Whether it’s a question searched on Google or an inquiry made to a primary physician or friend, the answer should always be that Xanax is addictive. Xanax releases and receives an increased amount of dopamine, which is a neurotransmitter that controls the reward and pleasure centers in the brain. Taking Xanax decreases the amount of GABA in the brain, which means there is less of a barrier between dopamine producers and receptors. The brain receives more dopamine, increasing the feelings of pleasure and decreasing feelings of panic, anxiety and other negative mental states. This surge in dopamine can cause a euphoric feeling for some people, and that effect is what some seek out when they misuse Xanax. Xanax is prescribed most often for generalized anxiety and panic disorder, a connection that can help explain part of the high Xanax addiction rates.
People with anxiety tend to have a higher chance of addiction than the general population because it is easier for them to rely on a prescription drug to ease their suffering. It is possible for Xanax addiction to occur even when used as prescribed. The time it takes for Xanax addiction to develop varies from person to person and depends on other substance habits, personal brain chemistry, frequency and quantity of use, and environmental factors. Xanax addiction is unlikely if it is used in low doses.
What is Xanax Addiction
Xanax addiction occurs when a person becomes physically and psychologically dependant on the drug to properly operate. If a person attempts to no longer take the drug, the body reacts negatively since it is accustomed to the presence and relies on Xanax for certain things, including the release of dopamine and feelings of calmness. The dependence is so strong that going a day without taking Xanax could result in withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety or panic attacks. Addiction to Xanax does not happen immediately. Most people acquire a tolerance first, increase their dosage or frequency, and then build a dependence over time. The stages of Xanax addiction are:
- Initiation: Most people who misuse Xanax are introduced to the medication through a doctor’s prescription. When a non-prescription initiation takes place, it’s usually at a party or nightclub and involves acquiring the drug from a friend or acquaintance who has a prescription.
- Experimentation: Having misusing Xanax a few times, some people might attempt to take the drug under different circumstances or at different times. They also might tweak the dosage — usually increasing it — to experience new effects.
- Regular Misuse: A person might not take the drug daily, but a pattern often develops during this stage. People either take the drug at a certain time of the day, specific day of the week, or as a reaction to a negative feeling.
- Dependence: This stage begins with tolerance, which involves an increase in frequency or dosage of the drug that the person’s body is able to readily process without experiencing strong effects. Once the tolerance is high enough, people may develop a dependence. Some people will need a shorter amount of time and lower dosage to become dependent. The experience of becoming addicted to Xanax is different for each person.
- Substance Use Disorder: During this stage, attempting to stop taking the drug seems like an unbearable challenge. People often recognize they are dependent on Xanax but cannot stop taking the drug due to the severe withdrawal symptoms, which they can experience, if they don’t take the drug, over a longer amount of time than usual. The time varies for each person and withdrawal symptoms vary depending on numerous factors, including the level of addiction. At this point, drug rehabilitation is the safest method for someone attempting to overcome their addiction.
Signs and Symptoms of Xanax Addiction
Recognizing the Xanax addiction signs and symptoms is vital to knowing when to seek treatment. Xanax addiction can be extremely serious and affect a person’s mood, behavior and physical characteristics. Some of the most common signs of Xanax addiction include:
- Slurred speech
- Dry mouth
- Heart palpitations
While Xanax addiction cannot be completely cured — nor can any dependency on drugs or alcohol — treatment can help affected individuals address their behavior and return to a healthy lifestyle.
Deadly Xanax Drug Interactions
Many people combine Xanax with other substances, and some of these pairings can cause severe injury or death. One of the most common and dangerous interactions for Xanax occurs with alcohol. Both of these substances are central nervous system depressants, slowing down the body and causing fatigue. Their combination can slow the body to such a pace that certain necessary functions may completely stop. A similar dangerous outcome can occur if Xanax is combined with ibuprofen or Nyquil, which both are central nervous system depressants like alcohol. Some herbal supplements such as Valerian, St. John’s Wort and Kava can increase the depressant potency of Xanax to a dangerous effect. When Xanax is combined with benadryl, people often experience dizziness and confusion.
Consuming caffeine while taking Xanax can be dangerous to a person’s health. This interaction increases the potency of the drug and causes cellular destruction in the brain. This also can work as a direct contrast to Xanax as the caffeine can cause overlapping symptoms, possibly leading to a person taking more Xanax in an attempt to curb negative emotions and achieve the desired effects. This can cause people to take a larger dosage of Xanax than prescribed by a doctor and increase the likelihood of addiction to the drug. While overdosing on Xanax alone is difficult, mixing it with other drugs can be lethal. Some routine daily activities people should avoid if taking a large dose of Xanax or combining it with another drug include:
- Operating heavy machinery
If you are taking Xanax as prescribed, check with your doctor before taking another drug. Checking with a medical expert can reveal any potentially dangerous effects from mixing the two substances, and this could protect you against severe injury and dependence on Xanax.
Xanax Addiction Statistics
Xanax is a popular drug in the United States and is commonly prescribed to people who suffer from anxiety or depression. While the medication can help many people, addiction to prescription drugs is a big issue currently looming over the country. American prescriptions for Xanax have grown by 9 percent each year, from 2006 – 2013, and in 2013 more than 50 million prescriptions were written for alprazolam. From 2005 – 2010, emergency room visits attributed to Xanax and other benzodiazepines doubled in frequency. Is Xanax addictive? Absolutely, but help with addiction treatment is available. Many people who became addicted to the drug also successfully completed rehabilitation and now live a healthier life, free from Xanax misuse. Rehabnear can help people find a solution to their substance use disorder and treat for any co-occurring disorders, such as anxiety or depression, that may help cause their Xanax addiction. Rehabnear has several specialized treatment programs, each with the ability to be individualized for the specific patient’s needs. Call today if you or someone you love is suffering from Xanax addiction and needs help.
Choosing the Best Inpatient Xanax Rehab Center
Treatment in a Xanax rehab center is often necessary due to the physical addiction that occurs when people abuse this drug. Xanax is a trademark for alprazolam, a fast-acting benzodiazepine sedative used for treating anxiety disorder and panic attacks. Xanax works by changing the way GABA, a chemical in the brain, acts. That change also produces a pleasant feeling of escape, known as euphoria or a "high" when the drug is abused.
Programs at inpatient treatment centers begin with medically supervised treatment that minimizes the effects of abrupt withdrawal from Xanax. These effects occur when the brain becomes so used to the presence of Xanax that it sends out garbled messages when the drug is no longer available. The treatment centers provide intensive counseling and behavioral therapy, which help patients return to a normal, drug-free life.
Our hotline is free of charge and fully confidential, and we have resources that can help you determine which rehab center is right for you or someone you care about who is battling Xanax addiction.
Please call our 24-hour, seven-day-a-week substance abuse recovery hotline at here so we can help you find the best inpatient Xanax rehab center for yourself or a loved one.
Inpatient Versus Outpatient Facilities
Both inpatient facilities and outpatient clinics are available for treatment of Xanax addiction. Outpatient facilities are usually recommended only if addiction to Xanax is treated at the very beginning of the addiction process, before the brain and body have become truly dependent on the drug. Outpatient treatment may also be the only possibility if a patient absolutely must participate in daily affairs while being treated for addiction. However, medically supervised detoxification to treat physical addiction by minimizing the impact of withdrawal symptoms is best carried out in an inpatient Xanax rehab center. Even a 30-day stay in a Xanax rehabilitation facility provides an opportunity for a patient to focus on getting sober in an environment far away from the daily stresses that may have triggered the addiction.
"There is no shame in admitting that you need help for yourself or for someone you care about."
In general, an inpatient facility is necessary when abuse, or even overly frequent use, has turned into addiction. When the GABA receptors in the brain are adversely affected by the absence of Xanax, the brain will send garbled messages to the body. These improper signals are the cause of withdrawal symptoms, and if a patient does not feel well physically when he or she does not have Xanax available, treatment for physical addiction is necessary.
Addiction and Tolerance
Addiction is not the same as tolerance, where a patient who is prescribed a certain dose of Xanax finds that the dose is no longer sufficient to keep his or her panic attacks or anxiety disorder under control. Physical addiction and dependence may result from long-term medical use of Xanax, but usually they are the result of misuse of the drug to obtain a "high," which may include crushing and snorting Xanax tablets rather than swallowing them.
Improper use of Xanax can be dangerous. In 2004, the Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN) noted that there were 46,526 emergency room admissions due to misuse of Xanax.
Xanax rehab centers are private and confidential. US government regulations regarding patient privacy apply to drug rehabilitation treatment, except in very specific cases where law enforcement or the justice system is involved. Even in such cases, only the exact information that the judge or law enforcement agency needs is divulged, and this is usually only a confirmation that a patient is indeed being treated at a particular center for a certain period of time. Private rooms are available at most Xanax treatment facilities, and while there may be a surcharge at some centers, other facilities, such as luxury or executive treatment centers, provide only private rooms.
To find out more about how treatment in a Xanax rehab center can help you or a loved one break the grip of addiction, please call our toll-free addiction resource and recovery hotline.
Duration of Treatment
The minimum duration of treatment in a Xanax rehab center is usually either 28 or 30 days. This allows about a week for intensive detoxification that stabilizes patients so they can undergo three weeks of very intensive therapy and counseling. Longer-term programs include 45-day, 60-day, 90-day and even 120-day or longer programs, which provide more time for inpatient counseling, which may include group therapy as well as auxiliary treatments such as meditation, relaxation techniques and other holistic therapies.
Course of Treatment
Treatment in a facility for inpatient Xanax addiction treatment begins with intake. A patient is welcomed to the facility after filling out personal information forms that include emergency contact information as well as personal medical information and financial forms. The patient is then cared for by a medical team, which administers substances needed to minimize the impact of sudden withdrawal from Xanax. This process is called acute or intensive detoxification, and it usually lasts for two to five days.
However, acute treatment for withdrawal symptoms may be followed up with less intensive medical treatment to reduce any remaining signs of physical addiction to Xanax. The goal of medical detoxification is to enable the patient to be able to focus on psychological rehabilitation without having cravings for the drug. Once a patient is stabilized, he or she works with an addiction treatment counselor to assess the triggers and pressures that led to Xanax addiction.
Specialized care may include art, music, sports or exercise activities, as well as mental health counseling and treatment if an underlying mental health issue is diagnosed as the cause or a complication of Xanax addiction. Treatment for other addictions may also be necessary. According to government statistics, two-thirds of patients admitted to the emergency room for benzodiazepine-related emergences in 2004 also used either one or two additional mind-altering substances.
Before a patient is discharged, he or she is given recommendations for extended outpatient care that may include outpatient therapy by counselors who are affiliated with or recommended by the Xanax rehab center. Peer support groups are usually also recommended as part of the ongoing recovery process from Xanax addiction.
Please call us any time of day or night for no-obligation, cost-free information about Xanax addiction treatment options that are right for you or someone you care about.
Determining the best location for Xanax rehab depends upon each patient and his or her needs. In general, the supportive nature of an inpatient treatment center is enough to help a patient focus on rehab regardless of its location. Traveling far from home for treatment can help a patient relax, but some patients may find that being in a familiar location is best for them. The quality of the facilities and staff are usually more important than the location of a particular Xanax rehabilitation facility.
After Residential Treatment
Once treatment in a residential Xanax rehab facility is complete, the challenge of staying clean while returning to daily living begins. This is why most centers recommend outpatient therapy and participation in support groups immediately after discharge from a Xanax treatment center. A patient may have to rebuild his or her life if addiction caused a job loss or if a job or family problem triggered the addiction. Rehab facilities may provide references to job and family counselors or services that can help a recovering addict start life anew.
The time to start addiction therapy is as soon as an addict realizes that he or she is not able to stop using Xanax without help. In some cases, family pressures, career problems or even a brush with the law may compel a patient to seek treatment for addiction to Xanax.
You can call our toll-free recovery information hotline at here to find out how to arrange for an intervention by a qualified intervention professional.
I Want to Find an Executive or Luxury Rehab Center
When executive issues are keeping you or someone you care about from looking for care for a problem with drugs or alcohol or behavior-related addiction, executive rehab centers will be invaluable. By coupling top-rated illicit substance and behavioral addiction treatments with the ability to use a computer or mobile device, a businessperson can receive support while keeping productive.
Frequently, current drug abuse and behavioral addiction treatment clinics grant the top-tier amenities one would only expect in the nation's best hotels, with your health and well-being being the biggest priorities. From housekeeping services and gym facilities to in-house massage therapy and fine linens, you can get the best-quality illicit substance and behavioral addiction treatment for yourself or someone you care about while taking it easy.
If you need assistance in locating the highest-quality luxury treatment programs for Xanax addiction, dial our no-charge hotline at your earliest convenience at here.
Other things that potential patients or their relatives may want to find out about include the methods used to assess patients for residential Xanax treatment and whether inpatient or outpatient treatment is best at a particular stage of addiction or for specific circumstances.
It is also beneficial to learn about methods of treatment used in Xanax rehab centers, such as cognitive therapy and behavior modification therapy. Finding out more about outpatient peer support groups, including 12-step groups and groups that use methods that are less spiritually oriented than 12-step groups, can help patients or their loved ones prepare for the period after acute Xanax rehabilitation treatment.
Finally, sober living and aftercare programs are available that combine supervision and scheduled treatment with the ability to return to work and other responsibilities.
Information about these services is available from our toll-free, no-obligation hotline at here as well as from treatment professionals.
Remember that it is never too late to stop the damage that Xanax addiction causes. Realizing that you or a loved one has a problem with this drug is the first step to treating addiction. Addiction to benzodiazepine drugs such as Xanax is a treatable condition, and there is no shame in admitting that you need help for yourself or for someone you care about. You or your loved one are not alone. In 2009, the government reported that 1,208,000 patients checked into inpatient rehabilitation centers for the treatment of drug addiction.
"Realizing that you or a loved one has a problem with this drug is the first step to treating addiction."
We are always here for you at here, and there is never any charge or obligation to use our services to find a rehab center that is right for you or someone you love.
We will refer you to a Xanax rehab center or another Xanax treatment program that will help you or someone you care about return to a healthy, drug-free life.
Please call our national recovery hotline at here if you or a loved one exhibits any of the symptoms listed above.
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