Xanax is a benzodiazepine or “benzo”. It’s also a controlled substance, which means that you need a doctor’s prescription to buy it. A physician might order it for you if you suffer from panic disorders or anxiety. Xanax withdrawal occurs when you want to quit using the benzo, but your body and mind depend on it.
How Does an Addiction to Xanax Happen?
Your doctor prescribes Xanax. Maybe a friend gives it to you to take to get over an anxiety-causing situation. Because the drug’s a sedative, you like the way that it makes you feel. So, you keep taking it even after your reason for doing so is over.
But over time, the body builds up a tolerance to the substance. So, you increase the dosage to get the same results you had before. If you’re actively chasing the high, you increase the dose by much more. Now, the drug’s greatest asset turns against you.
Doctors like Xanax because it leaves the body so quickly. When your body builds up the tolerance, and you boost the dose, your brain becomes accustomed to the influx of the chemicals. Now, when the drug leaves your system, you start to feel withdrawal symptoms associated with a Xanax addiction quickly.
Typical Xanax Withdrawal Symptoms
Mild Xanax withdrawal symptoms begin with headaches, muscle cramps, and gastrointestinal upset. You want to rest but can’t sleep. You sweat profusely and then shiver from cold. As the sedative effects of the drug wear off, even more, the central nervous system reignites its operations.
In many ways, the Xanax withdrawal symptoms you’re experiencing are signs of this activity. However, in severe cases, these symptoms also have some dangerous aspects. Examples include seizures and a significant boost to anxiety or depressive disorders. Counteracting these medical conditions during withdrawal requires assistance in the form of medically supervised detox.
After Xanax Withdrawal–Rehab with an Eye on Dual Diagnosis Treatment
After you finish medically assisted Xanax withdrawal, you’re still dealing with a craving. In many cases, there’s also a psychological addiction to the drug. The withdrawal symptoms you initially experienced between doses reinforced the understanding that you need the drug to function. Even though you now know that you can operate well without it, there’s still doubt in the back of your mind.
One of the reasons for this doubt is the sedative effect of the drug that helped you to relax. Often, it calmed an underlying psychological condition that other medications or drugs could not help. For this reason, therapists at rehab facilities will evaluate you for the potential of a co-occurring mental disorder. Examples would include anxiety, panic disorders, and depression.
There’s a clear connection between drug use and mental health challenges. Frequently, it’s difficult to pinpoint whether the drug made these conditions worse or you used drugs or alcohol because of them. No matter which may be true in your situation, it makes sense to undergo a dual diagnosis assessment after Xanax withdrawal. If experts do find a connection between drug use and a mental illness, rehab will focus on treating both.
How to Get the Most out of Rehab
Once you’ve made it through Xanax withdrawal, capitalize on the momentum you’ve built up. Don’t quit too early and leave lingering cravings to trap you in a substance abuse situation again. Instead, work with compassionate professionals who show you the way out of an addictive mindset. Typically, rehab participants work in close collaboration with facility staff to chart a course for treatment.
Examples of treatment options include:
- Residential stays between 30 and 90 days that facilitate healing, relaxation, and a firm return to control of your life
- Dual diagnosis treatment to help you manage mental health challenges alongside addiction cravings
- Trauma treatment seeks to discover unresolved issues from the past that still have a strong pull in your current life
- Integrated addiction model treatment with a whole person approach for maximum recovery support
- Holistic approaches that take you past overcoming Xanax withdrawal and help you plan for living a sober life
Because drug use is a habit, it’s crucial to learn how to start new habits that supplant it. You know this to be true for a broad range of life changes that involve bad habits. At a rehab facility, you learn healthy habits that can revolutionize the way you go about your day. Next, you learn how to maintain the personal growth you’re achieving and build on your successes.
Therapists use a broad range of approaches to foster this growth and support your decision to stop using. Doing so empowers you to take an active role in getting well and avoiding addictive behaviors in the future. Examples include:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy that helps you identify negative thoughts, feelings, and behaviors
- Dialectical behavioral therapy to pinpoint suitable areas of change
- Life skills training for relapse prevention
- Vocational mentoring that helps you hit the ground running after rehab
- Health education that puts you in control of your physical and mental recovery
Why Stopping Treatment after Xanax Withdrawal is a Bad Idea
It’s tempting to consider yourself healed and well on the road to recovery after you quit taking the drug. After all, the physical addiction to the substance is no longer active, and you should be okay on your own now. In reality, however, counteracting this facet of the addiction is only one component to healing. You still have to deal with cravings and the rationalizing for taking “just a little” that denotes a psychological dependence.
When you go home after a detox experience, you still have not learned how to restructure your days without using. For many individuals who’ve made it this far, learning how to go about the day without the drug is a new experience. Some still have leftovers and paraphernalia around the house. Not surprisingly, you are at the highest risk of a relapse right after detox.
If you’re still struggling with anxiety, you also have a medical health condition that requires treatment. When you return to your doctor now, the medical professional may prescribe Xanax again. Once you start taking the prescription again, you quickly put yourself back on track to developing an addiction. A stay at a rehab facility like Healing Springs Ranch counteracts all these problems before they occur.
You learn how to spend your day productively without seeking the drug or taking it. Therapists work with you to get control over a dual diagnosis and find out how to handle it without risking addiction. Moreover, you regain control over your life by identifying what puts you in danger of developing substance abuse problems. This crucial step ensures that you don’t fall victim to them in the future and significantly boosts relapse prevention techniques.
Are You Ready to Find out What Comes after Xanax Withdrawal?
Prepare yourself to live a life free from addiction to a drug. You don’t have to suffer in silence and depend on a substance. At Healing Springs Ranch, caring therapists partner with you to help you get sober and make it a lifestyle choice. Call 866-656-8384 today for suggestions on how to get started in recovery.