More individuals are opting for the calming and hypnotic effects of Xanax to relieve stress and anxiety than ever before. Not surprisingly, this is one of the most widely prescribed drugs of its kind in the country today. Studies indicate that in recent years the medical and non-medical use of Xanax has increased by over 1,400% as well as a 150% increase in the number of emergency room visits related to the use of this drug.
This excessive dispensation and capacity for fast dependence has also led to a spike in the number of people struggling with Xanax addiction and a push for tougher regulations to curb abuse. The common theme running through most Xanax abuse stories is the fact that after a week or two of taking this drug, many individuals continue use in order to function normally. The addiction cycle begins when prolonged use increases tolerance levels and users experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop using the drug or do not increase the dosage to satisfy the body’s progressive need for more. In fact, people in addiction to Xanax can take as many as 20 to 30 pills a day.
This was the case for Caitlin Myers who confessed that she popped multiple Xanax bars throughout every soccer game and drank Sprite remixed with Codeine every day while in her high school sophomore year. Unlike many people who become addicted to drugs, Caitlin was one of the lucky ones, who through treatment was able to rekindle her hope for freedom from addiction. Of her quest for sustainable sobriety Myers said… “I am moving home to start a job with horses again, which is a true passion in my life and a reason for me to stay sober. I no longer want to be another number added to those who have been killed by their addiction.” While studies show that Xanax alone is rarely fatal, it can be deadly when combined with other substances.
Autopsy reports for actor Heath Ledger and singers Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson indicated that Xanax combined with alcohol or other chemical substances played a key role in their deaths. The Food and Drug Administration also warns that it is dangerous to purchase Xanax that was produced outside of the United states. These products that are now available through various internet sources, the FDA cautions, may contain dangerous ingredients.
A Xanax addiction is typically indicated by:
Taking large or regular doses of Xanax or mixing it with alcohol can lead to a drug overdose or medical crisis indicated by blurred vision, slurred speech, difficulty breathing and extreme weakness. Individuals that have been consuming large amounts of Xanax or have been experiencing symptoms of addiction to this drug should seek medical assistance early to halt drug use. Xanax withdrawal symptoms can vary from mild to severe. The severity levels of a Xanax withdrawal can also escalate quickly and in some cases become deadly if the patient is unable to get immediate medical attention. A period of rehabilitation for Xanax is also recommended following detoxification. This recovery process may include among other services; diagnostic testing, psychological counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy and relapse prevention education and training. Apart from the fact that Xanax has the potential to be lethal when combined with other chemical substances, there are multiple health risks including brain damage associated with prolonged habituated use of Xanax. Therefore, it is critical to seek immediate medical attention to stop the progression of a dependence on this drug or to overcome Xanax addiction.
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