Do I Really Need Help for Withdrawal from Xanax?
Xanax, when prescribed by doctors and used as directed, can be quite effective in the treatment of anxiety and panic disorders. However, caution must be used while taking it as Xanax can be addictive. It is one of the most widely prescribed benzodiazepine type of drug in the United States. It is a potent and helpful drug for many that take it, but it can also cause serious side effects. Withdrawal from Xanax can be white uncomfortable for a user, and is best done under medical supervision.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, while highly effective for their intended uses, benzodiazepine drugs (like Xanax) cause addiction in a way similar to that of opioids, cannabinoids, and the club drug gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB).
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What Effects Can Withdrawal from Xanax Cause?
Depending on the length of time that a person has been using Xanax, and how high their doses were –symptoms can vary from one to another. The longer the time using it, and the larger the doses, the more impact the effects can have on an individual trying to quit. There is a possibility of seizures when a person abruptly stops taking the drug. Some of the known symptoms that may be experienced include:
- Abdominal pain
- Erratic mood swings
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Tingling sensation in fingers or toes
- Suicidal thoughts
- Panic attacks
- Weight loss
Not everyone that stops using Xanax will experience these symptoms. Other symptoms may have been experienced that are not listed here. Depending on how much Xanax is in a person’s body and if a serious addiction had developed, then symptoms may be more complicated. For some, it can be life-threatening if medical intervention is not sought.
Other Dangerous Effects of Xanax
The longer the time using the drug, the more dangerous the effects can be on an individual. Some of the effects that can have an impact on a user’s personal life and overall health may include:
- Trouble at school or work
- Isolation from social life
- Frequent thoughts of suicide
- Problems in personal relationships
- Change in appetite
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Blurred vision
- Increased heart rate
- Short-term memory loss
- Psychological dependence
- Physical dependence
- Muscle pains
- Trouble breathing
- Difficulty concentrating
Xanax is a dangerous and potent drug if abused, taken in large doses and used too frequently. If you or a loved one has become addicted to it, or have been using it for a long period of time and want to stop, then getting help is the safest way.
Getting Treatment for Withdrawal from Xanax
If you or a loved one have decided to stop taking Xanax, then it is best to consult a doctor about it. Some may be able to taper off the drug slowly, but it can take a while and the symptoms from withdrawal can be unpleasant and hard to deal with. The best way to get treated and avoid health complications is by detoxing safely under the supervision of trained medical professionals. Talk to a substance abuse specialist if more information about medically-assisted detox is needed.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2012). Well-Known Mechanism Underlies Benzodiazepines’ Addictive Properties.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2017). Alprazolam.