Alprazolam is the generic name of Xanax, a popular anti-anxiety medication. This powerful benzodiazepine treats panic attacks and anxiety disorders, but it also causes many problems because it is addictive. If you learn to recognize the signs of alprazolam abuse, then you can seek help when you or someone you know misuses this dangerous substance.
Symptoms of Alprazolam Abuse
Alprazolam works by strengthening natural “feel-good” chemicals in the brain, but this can cause dependency. As the drug makes the stress-relieving chemicals in the brain work better, it slows mental functions that cause anxiety or panic disorders. The problem is that, when first taken, it may create a euphoric high that is powerful enough to make the brain crave that relief again. If people take drugs to satisfy that craving, then they have paved the way for dependency, which means the brain will need alprazolam to function.
To recognize whether you or someone you know is abusing alprazolam, consider the following five signs of alprazolam abuse:
- Extreme happiness followed by intermittent bouts of depression or anxiety
- Changes in sleeping habits
- Changes in eating habits
- Uncharacteristically reckless behavior
- Increased secrecy, defensiveness or isolation
People with underlying emotional disorders have greater risks for alprazolam addiction, but anyone can become addicted to this drug. People who use alprazolam as prescribed, which means discontinuing use as early as possible, will probably not develop addictions, but it is still possible. Some people have gotten hooked on this drug after just one use, so do not think you are not addicted just because you have not had the medication for a long time.
Why Is Alprazolam so Addictive?
Alprazolam is so addictive because it affects the “pleasure center” of the brain, the same area that manages the following critical functions:
- Appetite and eating
- Sexual response and attraction
- Impulse control
- The formation of memory
- Stress and anxiety tolerance
- The formation of habits
This means that addiction develops in the same place that strongly governs behavior, so even users who want to quit will probably need professional help to do so.
Alprazolam Addiction Treatment
To quit alprazolam abuse, addicts need physiological and psychological rehab with the following elements:
- Personal counseling
- Coping-skill development and practice
- Support group meetings
- Holistic relaxation techniques
- Education about their addiction
- Preparing for life after rehab
To stop using alprazolam cold turkey could be life threatening, so seek professional help to get and stay clean from this dangerous drug.
Find Alprazolam Addiction Treatment
If you are concerned about your or someone else’s alprazolam abuse, then call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline anytime. Our admissions coordinators can answer your questions and help you determine if alprazolam abuse is occurring. The call and the advice are free, so reach out for professional support right now.