Alprazolam is a benzodiazepine perhaps most commonly known by its brand name Xanax. It is a central nervous system depressant that works by slowing down the brain in order to produce feelings of calm. Because of this effect it is prescribed to treat panic attacks and anxiety. While it can be an effective treatment for these issues, tolerance can begin to develop after the very first dose. This means that increasingly greater doses of the drug will be needed to achieve the desired effects. Taking increased doses of alprazolam can in turn lead to abuse of the drug which can become dangerous addiction.
How Does Alprazolam Produce Tolerance?
Alprazolam works by altering the chemicals and neurotransmitters in the brain. When alprazolam is taken, the body will begin to grow accustomed to its chemical presence and actually change its functioning to incorporate the effects of the drug. There is a neurotransmitter in the brain called GABA which is the brain’s naturally occurring tranquilizer. Those struggling with anxiety and panic disorders frequently produce too little GABA. Alprazolam works by making the GABA work more effectively. In turn, the brain may cut back further on its release of GABA, requiring you to take more alprazolam to feel the same effects as before. Another factor impacting tolerance is the liver enzymes that work to destroy alprazolam. When the body senses that greater amounts of alprazolam are in the system, it produces greater amounts of the alprazolam-destroying enzymes. So even though you may be taking more milligrams of the drug, more of the drug is being destroyed by your body.
How Does Alprazolam Tolerance Lead to Abuse?
Unfortunately tolerance is frequently a first step in developing a pattern of abuse and addiction. A person will often continue to use increasing amounts of the drug in order to feel its effects. Anytime a person is misusing or over-using a drug it is considered abuse. This abuse then leads to a physical dependence, meaning that even if a person wants to stop taking the drug, she cannot due to painful withdrawal symptoms that arise when the drug is stopped. In addition to a physical dependence, a psychological addiction often develops, characterized by an obsession with the drug to the detriment of everything else.
What Help Is Available for Alprazolam Tolerance Abuse?
In order to get clean from alprazolam, it is crucial to get help. In order to overcome the withdrawal caused by alprazolam abuse, addicts will need to undergo a program of medical detox. If a psychological addiction is also present, further rehab treatment will be required for patients to achieve a lasting recovery. This involves a multi-faceted program of treatment that will uncover any root issues contributing to the addiction, as well as provide the person with the skills and strategies needed to stay clean for a lifetime. Recovering from alprazolam abuse can be a long and difficult process, but it is possible with the right help.
Alprazolam Addiction Help
Are you struggling with a growing tolerance to alprazolam? Don’t wait to get help until it’s too late. Our toll-free helpline is available 24 hours a day, so call now and let our counselors get you the solutions you need.