Xanax (sometimes called Alprazolam) is a central nervous system depressant that is capable of limiting abnormal excitement in the brain. Xanax tablets have “XANAX” printed on their surface, along with the dosage. 0.25mg tablets are white and oval, 0.5mg tablets are peach and oval, 1mg tablets are blue and oval, and 2mg tablets are white and oblong. The National Institute on Drug Abuse report that this tranquilizer is part of a national epidemic of prescription drug addiction, and statistics show that Xanax is one of the most commonly abused anxiety treatments that prompt people to enter drug rehab. Street names for Xanax include z-bars, xannies, benzos and totem poles.
What is Xanax Prescribed to Treat?
Xanax is primarily used as a treatment for problems with anxiety, including short-term bouts of anxiety and more pervasive anxiety disorders. However, doctors sometimes choose to prescribe this drug to patients who suffer from debilitating panic attacks. Outside of the realm of mental health, Xanax may be used to help control the nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy treatments for cancer.
How do People Abuse Xanax?
Xanax pills are typically swallowed, though some people will attempt to crush and snort them. Simply swallowing the pills is widely regarded to be the most effective method of consumption.
What Happens to the Mind and Body after Xanax Exposure?
Once Xanax is absorbed into the bloodstream, it quickly begins to enhance the influence of a chemical called GABA. Nerve activity in the brain is then reduced. Once this activity is reduced, the user will normally feel relaxed, calm and safe. This reduction in stress and anxiety can make it easier to rest, and falling asleep can feel like a more pleasant experience. While you are awake, Xanax can decrease your response time, make you feel drowsy and reduce your energy levels. Long-term use leads to a phenomenon called depersonalization, which causes the user feeling detached from reality and experience the sense that life is somehow unreal.
Certain users can experience additional mental and physical side effects. These include a diminished sex drive, difficulties with sexual function, dizziness, heart palpitations, blurred vision, concentration difficulties, slurred speech and memory problems. Elderly people are also particularly susceptible to falling after taking Xanax.
What are the Facts about Xanax Addiction?
It is widely acknowledged that Xanax is habit-forming, though most people who end up addicted to the drug begin taking it to treat a legitimate problem with anxiety. Due to the fact that the drug acts quickly and the effects often peak within the first hour, it is common for users to start taking more than the recommended dose of Xanax in order to feel the peak effects more frequently (and for longer periods of time). As this process continues, users may then become tolerant to the drug. As time goes on, they will require larger and larger doses in order to experience the original anxiety-reducing effects that Xanax was intended to produce.
Why is Xanax Abuse Dangerous?
Taken consistently or in large quantities, Xanax can cause intense fatigue, confusion, lowered blood pressure, cognitive deficiencies, repressed reflexes, fainting, respiratory problems and coma. Xanax overdose can cause accidental death, and if taken during pregnancy the drug can harm an unborn baby.
Xanax abuse also poses a risk to the user’s mental health, as a documented side effect of long-term use is increased feelings of anxiety (i.e. the very emotions that Xanax is taken in order to reduce). Some people also report suicidal thoughts and a desire for self-harm.
What Programs are Available for Xanax Detox and Rehab?
White Sands detox programs are highly successful in helping addicts to end the destructive cycle of drug abuse. When you are dependent on Xanax, it is essential that you stop the drug under medical supervision, as the dosage must be gradually reduced in order to reduce the risk of withdrawal symptoms such as seizures, hallucinations and severe emotional disturbances. At White Sands, we also believe that therapy is vital to successful rehabilitation, and after Xanax detox we aim to help patients fully understand their reasons for abusing the drug (in order to minimize the likelihood of future relapses).
If you or someone you care about has become worryingly dependent on Xanax, contact White Sands Treatment Center today at 877-855-3470. We offer highly customized drug treatment and constant support for both patients and their loved ones.