Xanax is the brand name for alprazolam from the benzo group of drugs. It is used mostly for treating anxiety and panic disorder. Xanax is extremely habit-forming and can lead to physical dependence when used for longer than a few weeks.
Many people who use Xanax find it hard to stop taking the drug after this point. That is because it causes intense withdrawal symptoms. Stopping Xanax in an abrupt way can also be life threatening without proper support by a doctor.
If you need help quitting Xanax, please know that you can be safely treated at an addiction treatment center. The rehab will often provide on-site Xanax detox services. Keep reading to learn more about Xanax withdrawal and treatments.
What Is Xanax Withdrawal?
Xanax withdrawal refers to the set of symptoms a person will experience when they stop using Xanax all of a sudden. These symptoms occur after the person has become physically dependent on the drug.
The WHO reports that symptoms of Xanax withdrawals typically begin one to two days after the last dose. The detox process continues for at least two to four weeks.
Xanax withdrawal affects each person in a unique manner as symptoms, and how severe they are, will vary. For instance, those who used Xanax for only a few weeks may have just a few minor symptoms. This is in contrast with those who were using Xanax in high doses for many months.
No matter how long a person has been using Xanax, there is a safe way to withdraw from this drug. This takes place under medical supervision at an addiction treatment center.
What Are Symptoms of Xanax Withdrawal?
Xanax withdrawal produces a wide range of symptoms. Some people may experience only a few symptoms, while others may have many. Xanax withdrawals symptoms might include:
- Uncontrollable shaking.
- Blurred vision.
- Increased sensitivity to light or noise.
- Change in sense of smell.
- Insomnia (difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep).
- Poor concentration and memory.
- Anxiety and nervousness.
- Irritability and mood swings.
- Aggressive behavior.
- Muscle twitching or cramps.
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Decreased appetite.
- Weight loss.
- Sensations of pain, burning, numbness, or tingling in the hands or feet.
- Xanax withdrawal seizure.
When someone stops taking Xanax cold turkey it can also cause rebound anxiety. This can be a worse version of the symptoms they had prior to starting on Xanax.
Why Is Xanax Withdrawal Dangerous?
Seizures can pose a danger during Xanax withdrawals. In fact, stopping any benzo abruptly after one to six months of use can cause life-threatening Xanax withdrawal seizures.
Sweating, vomiting, diarrhea, and decreased appetite are other Xanax withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can increase the risk of complications such as dehydration and malnutrition. Blurred vision and insomnia are symptoms that may increase the risk of accidents. As well, rebound anxiety and depression can result in long-term mental illness.
Xanax interacts with a number of brain chemicals to produce its sedating effects on the central nervous system. Over time, Xanax use causes the brain and body to adapt to the presence of the drug. When Xanax is stopped, withdrawal symptoms are the brain and body’s way of finding balance after being dependent on it.
How Can Xanax Withdrawal Be Treated?
Xanax withdrawal is often treated using a slow taper. Tapering slowly off the drug helps reduce symptoms and the risk of problems like Xanax withdrawal seizure.
Xanax withdrawal can be treated by a doctor, or at a rehab center with medical detox. Going through medical detox at a treatment center allows the person to be treated by medical experts who specialize in addiction. A rehab center can also help people safely withdraw from alcohol and other drugs if they use these with Xanax.
At a drug rehab center, Xanax withdrawals can be treated in an inpatient or outpatient setting. An inpatient setting is ideal for those who have a severe addiction to Xanax. Also, it is the best setting for people with a serious medical condition that requires them to be closely observed.
How Long Does Xanax Withdrawal Last?
The length of the Xanax taper and detox will vary from one patient to the next. This is based on factors including the starting dose, risk of relapse, and how well the patient tolerates the taper. The patient’s metabolism, health status, and mental health history are other factors that play into the length of Xanax withdrawal. The average length of Xanax withdrawal is two to four weeks, though it may take longer for some patients.
Before Xanax doses are tapered, Xanax is replaced with another benzo called Valium. Valium is a long-acting benzo that stays in the body for a longer period than Xanax. It is found to be more tolerable, less toxic, and better at reducing withdrawal symptoms.
The doctor will gradually reduce the Valium dosage weekly, monthly, or as needed. This helps to manage withdrawal symptoms and reduce the risk of Xanax withdrawal seizure.
Where Can I Find Xanax Detox?
Dana Point Rehab Campus provides safe Xanax detox and withdrawal. Medical detox is always the first stage of treatment for substance use disorders before counseling and behavioral therapy. The goal of Xanax detox is to stabilize patients, manage and reduce withdrawal symptoms, and help them recover from drug dependency.
Some treatment centers only offer detox services, while others may only offer behavioral therapies for addiction. The best way to ensure freedom from Xanax abuse is to receive treatment from a rehab center that offers both. Medical detox treats drug dependency, while CBT helps patients change harmful behaviors and mindsets related to addiction.
Also, note that anxiety and depression are common Xanax withdrawal symptoms. Rehab centers like Dana Point Rehab Campus also offer dual diagnosis treatment. This is designed for treating both the Xanax addiction and the mental health disorder at the same time.
If you or someone you care about needs help breaking the grip of Xanax, contact Dana Point Rehab Campus. Give our caring team a call with any questions at (888) 509-1751.