Xanax is in a class of drugs called benzodiazepines that are used to treat anxiety, nervousness, panic attacks, and tension. Xanax addiction is one of the most common types of prescription addiction in the United States. The drug is highly addictive due to its calming and euphoric effect. However, the drug has several dangerous short and long term side effects. Cases of Xanax addiction are serious medical illnesses that are best treated with the help of professional staff and physicians.
Xanax also requires larger and larger doses of the medication over time in order to achieve a sustained effect, and many cases of Xanax addiction are typified by patients who take very large doses of the drug. The physical and psychological effects of Xanax addiction and addiction to other benzodiazepines can be quite severe. Xanax addiction withdrawal and detoxification should be performed at a drug rehab center due to the potential severity of symptoms. Xanax addiction recovery can take several weeks and requires gradual withdrawal, treatment of psychological and physical symptoms, psychological counseling, and group support.
Xanax Addiction Symptoms
Xanax addiction is characterized by a number of physical and psychological symptoms that vary between each individual. Some of the physical symptoms and effects may include muscle cramps, nausea, diarrhea, drowsiness, a lack of appetite, coordination problems, and slurred speech. Some of the visible symptoms of Xanax addiction may be more severe during the initial weeks of the addiction and later on become less noticeable. The severity of symptoms also depends on the amount of Xanax taken at one time.
Some of the psychological symptoms of Xanax addiction may include rage, hostility, cravings for the drug, depression, anxiety, a lack of mental focus, and a loss in interest in normal activities. Xanax addicts may seem visibly sleepy at all times of the day or during much of the day. They often have depression and insomnia that is associated with sleep cycle disturbances. Psychological disorders are common in cases of prescription addiction, and Xanax addiction cases may have associated psychological disorders that are usually treated in conjunction with treatment for the addiction.
Xanax addicts will also show various behavioral changes. In many cases of Xanax addiction, addicts will go out of their way to purchase the medication. They may steal money or spend money that they do not have on prescriptions of Xanax or other benzodiazepines . They may also obtain the drug illegally through a dealer. Xanax addiction results in decreased performance at work or school in almost every case because of the strong mental and physical effects of the drug. Xanax addicts may also neglect their appearance and sleep for longer periods of time than normal.
Xanax Addiction Withdrawal
Xanax addiction withdrawal may be quite severe depending on the patient, the length of time of the addiction, how quickly the withdrawal occurs, and the amount of the drug that the patient uses per day. Withdrawal from Xanax and other benzodiazepines can be quite severe. Physical symptoms of withdrawal include increased heart rate, dysphoria, dry mouth, a loss of appetite, insomnia, tremors, dizziness, cramps, nausea, vomiting, memory loss, and heart palpitations. More severe symptoms can include grand mal seizures, high fever, and hallucinations. There are also a number of psychological symptoms such as anxiety, panic attacks, mood swings, suicidal or homicidal ideations, hyperalertness, rage, and vivid dreams.
Grand mal seizures have been reported in cases of Xanax addiction that were only short term. Withdrawal symptoms are felt within 12 hours of the last dose of Xanax and peak within 3 to 4 days. However, lingering symptoms of withdrawal may last for several months after the last dose. Even in cases of gradual Xanax addiction withdrawal there have been reports of grand mal seizures. Therefore it is crucial that treatment occurs at a qualified drug rehab center for the safety of the patient. Treatment for Xanax withdrawal is possible at drug rehab centers which provide medical supervision and other types of support that assist with the Xanax addiction recovery process.
Xanax detox and withdrawal in most cases occurs over a period of weeks and not in a short period of time. This is to reduce the severity of the symptoms and allow the patient as much comfort as possible during the process. Xanax detox is multi-faceted and it is a long term process. Since the withdrawal symptoms of Xanax addiction are severe, detox must occur gradually over a period of time with supportive counseling and medications rather than over a shorter period of time.
Treatment for Xanax withdrawal symptoms depends on the symptom that is presented and may include psychological counseling, psychiatric medications to treat psychological symptoms, other medications to treat physical symptoms, and other treatments. The amount of Xanax given is reduced over a period of time to avoid the most serious symptoms of Xanax withdrawal. However, there may still be symptoms for up to several weeks even after the detoxification process is complete such as cravings or other psychological symptoms.
The severity of the withdrawal symptoms of Xanax addiction combined with the potential for grand mal seizures even for new addictions means that the process of detoxification should be supervised by addiction professionals. Supervision at a drug rehab center allows patients to go through the process more comfortably. They can also be treated quickly in the case of a medical emergency. The comfortable and safe environment that drug rehab centers provide will ease stress on the patient who is already suffering from his or her addiction. Drug rehab centers also offer numerous professionally trained staff members who can assist patients with any type of concern or problem.
Xanax Addiction Treatment and Xanax Rehab
Xanax addiction recovery requires a combination of several treatments. Xanax addiction is treated with a combination of counseling, psychotherapy, group counseling, medication, detoxification, rehabilitation, and an individualized plan that is created by an addiction specialist. Medical treatment from a licensed medical doctor is almost always provided as a part of the Xanax addiction treatment process. Cognitive-behavioral therapy can help patients deal with psychological cravings of the drug and becoming accustomed to a life without the drug, and it can be included as a part of the treatment process.
Physical Xanax addiction may be treated with supportive medications as the symptoms arise. Klonopin is used as a Xanax alternative in many forms of treatment as the patient is being weaned off of Xanax. 12-step meetings provide outpatient group therapy support where patients can discuss their progress with addiction specialists and other recovering addicts. Other psychiatric medications for Xanax addiction symptoms may be provided to patients with psychological symptoms of anxiety, mood swings, suicidal ideations, or other symptoms.
An important part of the rehabilitation treatment process is to treat the patient as whole rather than just the addiction. Xanax addicts may have psychological disorders that are not directly related to their addiction but may be contributing factors to the addiction. Those disorders may also be treated in some form during rehabilitation. Both outpatient and inpatient treatments are available. However for many Xanax addiction cases, inpatient treatment will typically be recommended by addiction specialists in order for Xanax addiction withdrawal symptoms to be promptly and properly treated.