Xanax is a powerful anti-anxiety medication that belongs to the benzodiazepine family of drugs. It is a powerful short-acting central nervous system depressant that prescribed for those suffering from anxiety and panic disorders. While effective when used in the short-term, Xanax is highly addictive and can easily be abused. For those abusing Xanax, the process of quitting can be difficult and painful.
If you are looking to quit Xanax for good, it is important to know what you can expect during the detox process. The following is a general timeline of the symptoms you can experience once you stop abusing Xanax. With this information, the withdrawal and recovery process becomes more tolerable. If you need help quitting Xanax today, call the treatment professionals at Pinnacle Recovery toll-free right now.
Xanax is known as a short-acting medication. As soon as the drug clears the bloodstream, you can start experiencing withdrawal symptoms within a few hours after the last dose. The early stages of Xanax withdrawal generally last for 1-4 days. However, the early stages of withdrawal after abusing Xanax can vary depending on the amount of Xanax used, the period of time used, and the presence of other drugs in the body.
Common withdrawal symptoms include the following:
- Muscle pain
- Heart palpitations
- Blurred vision
However, you can experience more severe withdrawal symptoms depending on previous addiction history, length of time abusing Xanax and any pre-existing health conditions. These symptoms can include:
- Increased paranoia
Long-Term Effects After Abusing Xanax
When you abuse Xanax and seek treatment, the worst of the withdrawal symptoms occur within the first few days. However, you will continue to experience symptoms for weeks following your last dose. After your first week clean, your heart rate may continue to race. You may also continue to experience insomnia and irritability. Symptoms of depression may start during this first week. If you were taking Xanax to combat anxiety, anxiety symptoms may return.
During the second week after the last dose, depression and irritability can still be present. You may also experience constant mood swings, and insomnia may still be an issue. However, the risk of seizures and other severe symptoms greatly diminish. In the third and fourth week of recovery, insomnia will become less of a problem and physical symptoms will start to subside. However, your mental and emotional symptoms may still be present.
Beware of PAWS
While the physical symptoms of abusing Xanax diminish after a couple of weeks, you are not out of the woods. You will experience emotional and psychological withdrawal symptoms for a week, months and even years after you quit taking Xanax. This phenomenon is commonly known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS). The symptoms that you experience with PAWS are mainly psychological in nature and can be intense. Without professional intervention, these feelings can trigger cravings which can lead you back to active abuse of Xanax.
Can I Quit Cold Turkey?
If you are looking to quit abusing Xanax for good, you may be considering stopping the use of the drug on your own. While quitting cold turkey may be an attractive option, doing so can be dangerous. Xanax is a drug that can cause seizures if you abruptly quit taking it altogether. If you experience seizures or hallucinations as a result of self-detox, you can experience dangerous health complications that can result in hospitalization, coma, and even death.
The Importance of Professional Help in Quitting Xanax
No matter how long you have been abusing Xanax, the key to long-term recovery is to seek professional help at a reputable drug treatment facility. The first and most important step in recovering from Xanax abuse is undergoing medical detoxification. Since you can experience painful and uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms once you quit using the drug, medical detox will help make the withdrawal process more tolerable.
Experienced detox staff will use medication-based therapy and other interventions that will gradually wean you off of Xanax. You will be monitored around the clock in a safe, clean and secure treatment facility. During your time in detox, staff will conduct a thorough evaluation to diagnose any co-occurring disorders that can make your recovery more difficult. With this information, treatment staff will create an individualized treatment plan that will address your specific needs. When you become physically and psychologically stable, you can transition into intensive inpatient treatment.
During inpatient treatment, you will undergo a combination of individual and group therapy, 12-step support, life and coping skills training, as well as other traditional and holistic treatment interventions. The goal of drug treatment is to uncover the roots of your Xanax abuse. With help and support from staff and others in recovery, you will gain the tools you need to become successful in your recovery.
When you complete drug treatment, it is highly advisable to attend some form of intensive outpatient treatment. Whether it is continued counseling, sober living, alumni programs or other aftercare. When you continue your treatment, you focus on relapse prevention and finding healthy ways to deal with daily stresses which can lead to relapse. With aftercare programs, you are able to receive treatment while maintaining your work, school and family obligations.
Quit Abusing Xanax Right Now
Xanax is an extremely addictive medication. If you have found yourself dependent on Xanax, you may feel there is little to no chance that you can break free. While abusing Xanax can lead to feelings of hopelessness, help is a phone call away. The experienced treatment professionals at Pinnacle Recovery understand the difficulty in quitting Xanax. With years of cumulative experience, our treatment staff has developed Xanax treatment programs they have been extensively researched, proven to work and highly customizable to your specific needs.
From your first day through to successful completion of our treatment program, the compassionate staff at Pinnacle Recovery will give you the support and tools you need to empower yourself in your recovery journey. Call us today and take back control of your life.