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When you think about prescription drug addictions, Xanax is the first name to pop into the minds of many. Despite the high abuse liability and addiction potential, a progressively increasing number of individuals continue to develop tolerance and addiction to it. This is partly because Xanax, a type of benzodiazepine, is commonly used to treat a wide range of panic and anxiety disorders. Its calming effects on the central nervous system have made it the drug of choice for problems like high-stress levels and sleep disorders. These circumstances have opened the door to Xanax being abused by those who are desperate to get the problems mentioned above under control, as well as the recreational drugs in search of an easy way to get high.

Estimates suggest that approximately half of the people who rely on benzodiazepines like Xanax daily develop an addiction. While this addiction can have devastating consequences on various aspects of life, treatment is available.

Recovery from Xanax addiction moves on two fronts: psychological and physical. Medical detox centres allow the bodies of the addict to become accustomed to the lack of drugs. In contrast, Xanax addiction rehab provides an opportunity to build skills while preventing relapses.

The temptation to abuse Xanax can be too good to resist for many people, and it can be particularly dangerous to consume, especially for at-risk populations. This drug’s mechanism of action is such that its effects can be felt almost immediately upon consumption, sometimes within 25 minutes. However, these effects dissipate rapidly at well in a couple of hours. This property makes people compelled to take more of this drug, even if it means violating their prescription limit. With the increasing consumption of Xanax, tolerance begins to build up, forcing people to take increasingly larger doses every day. Over time, this habit can get them hooked on Xanax.

Due to the circumstances mentioned above, it is always best to get a prescription for a short period of time, with no more than four weeks, to minimise the risk of the body getting acclimatised to it. Even if an individual requires long-term use for a legitimate medical reason, it is better to go for a staggering treatment with intermittent phases of consumption followed by tapering off. The dose must also be kept as low as possible.

Sometimes, despite following all precautions, dependence on Xanax sets in. Once dependence is in place, the fear of withdrawing from this drug kicks in. People may genuinely wish to stop using this medicine after realising its negative consequences, but withdrawal symptoms may be too severe to let them take a step towards recovery. In such circumstances, the best way out is to join a Xanax addiction treatment programme at a dedicated rehab to get professional help under constant supervision.

With various Xanax rehabilitation centres in the UK, it can be difficult to choose one. The best way to get a recommendation for rehab is to ask your GP or another healthcare professional. You may also search for a treatment facility close to where you live.

Most Xanax addiction UK centres offering treatment begins with a process of detoxification. This is because the withdrawal symptoms of Xanax addiction are much more severe than those of other benzodiazepines. In most cases, mild symptoms appear soon after stopping the drug and can quickly become intense. These symptoms include:

  • Aggression
  • Aches and pains
  • Headaches
  • Anxiety
  • Blurry vision
  • Dizziness
  • Tremors
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Irritability
  • Shits in mood
  • Hypersensitivity to light and sound
  • nightmares
  • insomnia
  • tense muscles
  • paranoia
  • depression
  • tingling in feet, hands, and face
  • difficulty breathing
  • suicidal thoughts

Detoxification, commonly known as detox, is a process that aims to help clients stop taking Xanax safely while managing and minimising the withdrawal symptoms mentioned above. The process usually takes place in a hospital’s rehabilitation centre under 24/7 medical supervision.

In many cases, Xanax is stopped over time in a gradual way. Sometimes, experts may swap it with another longer-acting benzodiazepine to make the process easier. In both cases, the aim is to gradually reduce the drug levels in the body until it is completely out of the system. This process is known as tapering and may require up to 6 weeks to complete.

The goal of treatment is to avoid the use of Xanax in the long run. It may also include other targets, such as addressing all co-occurring diseases, such as depression and anxiety. To achieve these goals, most rehabs offer a multitude of treatment options. More than one of these treatments is often used simultaneously to speed up recovery and increase the chances of success.

Most types of treatment plans for Xanax addiction are based on the following two elements:

Therapy

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is the most common and effective type of therapy used to overcome Xanax addiction. It works by addressing the learning processes that lead to substance abuse disorder in the first place and provides clients with a chance to work alongside a qualified therapist to develop different healthy coping strategies. Research has indicated that the use of CBT along with tapering can effectively reduce the use of benzodiazepines, including Xanax, in a period of three months.

Other therapies commonly used to address Xanax addiction include:

  • Self-management training
  • Individual counselling
  • Cue exposure
  • Couples or family counseling
  • Support groups

Medication

As mentioned before, the detox period for Xanax addiction might be longer as compared to detox for other drugs due to the severity of withdrawal effects. The drug dose has to be slowly tapered over time to prevent these effects from negatively affecting the body. As a result, detox may overlap with other forms of addiction treatments, and medicines may be prescribed to reduce the intensity of these symptoms.

Once the detox is over, and the treatment process has ended, clients need no additional medicine. For those with a dual diagnosis, experts may prescribe a medication to treat their concurrent mental health issues, such as an antidepressant medicine for depression and anxiety.

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