A commonly treated prescription drug abuse problem seen at the Action Recovery Group alcohol and drug rehab center is Xanax addiction. Unfortunately many prescription drugs meant to help us end up becoming a drug dependency problem. Action Recovery Group offers an addiction treatment program in a secluded South Ogden setting. Finding recovery and freedom from medications like Xanax is possible. Call us at 801-475-4673 to get information about treatment options for yourself or a loved one.

What is Xanax® and Benzodiazepines?

Xanax is classified as a benzodiazepine drug. Benzodiazepines are sedatives or tranquilizers. They are one of the common classes of drugs that depress the central nervous system. Prescribed to treat anxiety disorder, they include other brand names medications such as Ativan, Valium, and Klonopin.

Xanax® is the brand name for alprazolam.  It is prescribed most commonly to treat anxiety disorders, prevention of seizures, muscle spasms, panic attacks, and sleeplessness—or insomnia.  As a central nervous system depressant it slows the brain function of what is considered to be normal to deal with these symptoms of physical, emotional, or mental illnesses.

The dependency, or reliance upon benzodiazepine drugs like Xanax, can become severe. The addiction can cause stresses at home and in professional work life, and in fact may induce emotional dependency as well as chemical. Panic attacks may not be arrested by the drug use but exacerbated. Some side effects and symptoms of Xanax and other central nervous system drug abuse include:

  • Confusion
  • Slurred speech
  • Impaired cognitive abilities
  • Sleepiness
  • Physical weakness
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Lightheadedness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Perspiring and clammy skin
  • Body aches and trembling
  • Restlessness
  • Respiratory failure
  • Temporary psychotic episodes
  • Delirium
  • Disorientation

The side effects listed also may increase when in withdrawal mode from central nervous system depressants like Xanax.

Central Nervous System Depressants

Often referred to as tranquilizers and sedatives the central nervous system depressants such as prescription drugs brands Valium, Librium, and Xanax are included with the family of barbiturates and benzodiazepines. They may cause a calm or even extreme drowsy feeling. People under their influence often may act uninterested or out-of-touch; sometimes referred to a “zoning out.” Overuse may lead to addiction but also an accidental overdose is not uncommon leading to respiratory failure and even death.

Some of the central nervous system (CNS) type drugs well known by prescription brand name include:

  • Xanax
  • Valium
  • Librium
  • Klonopin

From the website www.drugabuse.gov we read:

“Most CNS depressants act on the brain by affecting the neurotransmitter gammaaminobutyric acid (GABA). Neurotransmitters are brain chemicals that facilitate communication between brain cells. Although the different classes of CNS depressants work in unique ways, it is through their ability to increase GABA—and thereby inhibit brain activity—that they produce a drowsy or calming effect beneficial to those suffering from anxiety or sleep disorders.”

Read more: http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/prescription-drugs/cns-depressants/how-do-cns-depressants-affect-brain-body

Xanax Addiction

Xanax is addicting and dependency may occur when taken over long periods of time. It is sad that a drug meant to alleviate emotional and other burdens may result in an addiction when the body builds up a tolerance for the doses being taken.  Withdrawal from Xanax medication is caused when a person attempts to stop taking the central nervous system depressant.  Because it is prescribed to both old and young people an inordinate number of younger people in America have become addicted to Xanax.

Just as other medications created from oxycodone, such as Oxycontin, and from hydrocodone such as Vicodin, have made it from prescribed medications to street use, Xanax has become a popular medicine for drug dealers.   

Dangers and Abuse

It is sad when anyone becomes addicted to a prescription drug, but especially so when young people begin down the path to drug abuse. Xanax produces a temporary euphoric effect. Coupled with an increased belief or sense of sociability the dangers lay in becoming emotional dependant as well as for prescribed purposes. Xanax is often taken with alcohol which increases the likelihood of addiction and also overdose.

Because both alcohol and Xanax suppress the central nervous system, they also suppress normal heart and lung operations.  Xanax also has been taken with illicit street drugs such as cocaine or in combination with other prescription drugs creating a potentially lethal cocktail. The results of this abuse and unintentional overdosing have led to thousands of deaths annually. It has become a national crisis.

Xanax is usually taken orally as a pill, but may be crushed and mixed with other drugs, taken intravenously, or snorted like cocaine. In 2010 the Federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration conducted a survey and estimated that over 2 million people were taking Xanax or other anti-anxiety drugs for non-medical reasons.

Treatment for Xanax Addiction

For those in need of Xanax addiction treatment, a highly effective program is available at Action Recovery Group. Effective prescription drug abuse treatment includes cognitive-behavioral therapy as well as experiential therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy guides a struggling individual to change his or her thinking and behaviors and to develop healthy coping skills. Experiential therapy at Action Recovery Group includes guided meditation, yoga and Tai Chi, other guided exercise, interactive activities, brain science education and more. 

The addiction treatment program at Action Recovery Group is lead by 30-year veteran drug addiction counselor Rick Visser. Rick and his professional team have a gift for helping struggling individuals get clean and sober and stay that way long-term. We help individuals get to the true “core issues” that are at the heart of their addiction struggles. Discovering and healing these core issues is essential to long-lasting recovery success. Otherwise all you are doing is “treating surface symptoms.” If you or someone you care about is struggling with Xanax addiction and you’re not sure where to get help, call Action Recovery Group.

Action Recovery Group is a highly effective drug rehab center fully dedicated to assisting individuals with prescription drug addiction challenges. Action Recovery Group provides addiction treatment support to families, employers and counselors as they strive to help their loved ones, employees and clients. You can get the help you need by calling 801-475-4673.