Alprazolam is a drug in the benzodiazepine family. It is primarily used as treatment for anxiety but may also be used as a muscle relaxant or for pain management. Alprazolam is habit-forming, and users may become physically or psychologically dependent on this drug. Physical dependence leads to the experience of withdrawal symptoms, and these may include muscle pain or painful tremors. Experiencing increased pain when alprazolam is not in the body may lead chronic pain sufferers to believe their pain is worse than it is or that it cannot be managed without alprazolam. Believing the drug is needed and necessary contributes to psychological dependence and addiction.
Pain Management and Alprazolam Addiction Risks
Alprazolam depresses the central nervous system much like opioids and may be a part of a chronic pain management plan. However alprazolam can interact with over the counter pain relief medications, opioids, muscle relaxants, and other anti-anxiety drugs. Taking alprazolam with these or other substances can cause increased side effects such as dizziness and drowsiness and may increase the likelihood of addiction.
Individuals dealing with chronic back pain are already at increased risk for addiction. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) reports that over 116 million individuals in the United States struggle with chronic pain. Managing this long-term pain with powerful medications includes risks of the following:
- Drug tolerance
- Increased pain sensitivity
NIDA points out that there is a lack of research on long-term pain management and addiction, but that as much as 40 percent of the population with chronic pain may also be dealing with addiction issues. Individuals struggling with chronic back pain should carefully monitor their use of and reaction to opioid pain medications and additional medication such as alprazolam. Individuals with past or present substance abuse issues should explore alternatives for pain management.
Alprazolam Addiction Help
If you struggle with chronic pain and substance abuse issues, call our toll-free helpline. We are here 24 hours a day to help you find addiction recovery programs staffed with medical professionals who understand the connection between pain and substance use. We can help you find programs that include alternatives for pain management and will address your personal challenges to recovery. Please call today, and learn about your options for a pain-free and drug-free future.