Xanax Withdrawal Symptoms, Signs and Detox
Xanax is one of the most commonly prescribed drugs in the United States used to treat various physical and mental health conditions such as Insomnia, panic attacks, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and anxiety issues. It is used as a sedative as it works by slowing down brain processes and thereby working effectively to combat disorders like extreme social anxiety. This is through increasing the effectiveness of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), which is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that mutes stress responses.
Xanax use results in an increase in dopamine production in the reward nerve pathways of the brain, apart from its sedative function. Long term use of Xanax can affect natural GABA production and thereby making the brain cease producing it upon the absence of the drug. This dependency can cause withdrawal once Xanax leaves the bloodstream, and as a result, the brain may tend to strain to reclaim the natural state and balance.
Factors Affecting The Duration of Xanax Withdrawal
- Metabolism rate
- Frequency of drug usage
- Age of an Individual
- Liver functioning
- Duration of drug abuse and misuse
Approximately forty percent of individuals who use benzodiazepines for more than half a year experience average to extreme withdrawal symptoms as per research studies. The rest of the individuals report milder signs and symptoms. The intensity of one’s signs and symptoms may make him/her experience extreme anxiety as compared to the pre-treatment stage.
A large percentage of people quitting Xanax use experience increased anxiety levels. Feeling irritated and confused is common among individuals, and this can make them temperamental amongst their peers and family. As a result, it can significantly affect your home, work, and school activity.
Mood changes, nervousness, jumpiness, insomnia may affect an individual with Xanax withdrawal during tapering off, and symptoms may be on and off too. Individuals may experience physical effects, such as body and muscle pains, headaches, and tremors.
Some of the unpleasant withdrawal symptoms associated with sudden quitting (cold turkey) include; seizures and delirium. Seizures are characterized by unconsciousness and intense muscle contractions, whereas delirium involves sudden, short term changes in behavior and perception and is marked by confusion and distress.
Xanax withdrawal symptoms are sometimes referred to as Xanax hangover and can begin as early as one quits the first dosage. The symptoms are often likened to symptoms of alcohol hangover. However, emotional symptoms tend to be extreme and can lead to increased intake of the drug and, finally, dependence.
It takes 11 hours to attain Xanax’s half-life, but some individuals may process it in six hours, whereas those whose metabolism is slow it can take over 24 hours to process. The onset of withdrawal symptoms begin after the Xanax is metabolized out of one’s body system, and GABA levels decrease. Since the brain is accustomed to Xanax binding the inhibitory neurotransmitter (GABA), it secretes lower amounts of GABA after the first dosage; hence it requires time to regain its state.
Since the brain is accustomed to Xanax binding the inhibitory neurotransmitter (GABA), It secretes lower amounts of GABA after the first dosage; hence it requires time to regain its natural state and balance.
- Low concentration span
- Increased anxiety
- Irritability and agitation
- Suicidal thoughts
- Increased anxiety
- Increased stimuli reaction such as light and sound
Acute Withdrawal Symptoms
They start upon the metabolism of the last Xanax dosage from the body system. Consistent drug abusers may take a longer period before it metabolizes out of the body. They include;
- Drug cravings
- Nightmares and Intrusive memories
- Body pain and stiffness
- Hot flushes
- Panic attacks
- Balancing difficulty
- Paranoia, hallucinations, and obsessions
- Gastrointestinal cramps
Severe Acute Withdrawal Symptoms
- Increased heartbeat rates due to panic, chest pains.
Protracted Withdrawal (Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Syndrome)
Xanax provides instant relief for a couple of hours by binding the brain’s receptor cells rapidly. Due to its high absorption and effectiveness, medical practitioners don’t recommend long time use as it can lead to tolerance and dependency on individuals. Daily use of high doses of benzodiazepines for long periods like a week or more also tends to cause dependency on individuals.
Research studies in the past decade show that benzodiazepines were the second most abused sedatives among adults aged 65 and above and led to 10% of the emergency room admissions. It’s estimated that over 45 million people aged 12 and above have reported benzodiazepine prescriptions, and a fifth of the individuals agreed on having abused the drug at least once.
Long term use of Xanax or using it in large doses can trigger protracted withdrawal, which results in long-running withdrawal symptoms. It takes a week to withdraw from Xanax in most cases, but protracted withdrawal tends to last for four weeks or more and is marked by strong cravings and discomfort. It’s highly likely to be experienced by individuals who opt to quit Xanax’ cold turkey.’
Protracted Withdrawal Symptoms
- Intense insomnia
- Weak muscles
- Cognition difficulty
The purpose of any detox program is to enable the body to recuperate after long term use of a drug. Drug detox can prevent uncomfortable results that may be experienced from the immediate cessation of a drug. If you opt to stop Xanax misuse or abuse, it is advisable to seek close medical supervision to help you combat withdrawal symptoms.
MD Home Detox
MD Home Detox is the USA’s leading private in-home drug and alcohol detox center. We offer individualized concierge services to clients by our various expert trained medical personnel at your home and evaluate your progress. Home-based treatment and care are great for clients who like privacy, and it also allows our experts to familiarize themselves with your environment, point out your triggers, and come up with an individualized treatment plan.
MD Home Detox has various locations across the U.S that include; Colorado, Connecticut, New Jersey, California, New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania. We also offer inpatient programs for clients who seek rehabilitation facilities. We treat alcoholism, mental health, co-occurring disorders, and detox programs such as heroin detox, Vicodin detox, rapid detox, oxycodone detox, fentanyl detox, methadone detox, and prescription drug detox.
As a home-based client, a medical doctor and a nurse visit you once a day to check on you as you undergo your detox journey. Visit our facilities today or book an appointment with us to begin your detox journey as soon as possible.
Xanax withdrawal can be difficult for individuals and also life endangering. It is advisable to seek medical help if considering quitting Xanax use. Individuals who use Xanax as prescribed can get help from their doctor to help taper off the dosage to prevent discomfort during detoxification. Sudden quitting of Xanax can lead to unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, and in turn, an individual may relapse back to counter the adverse symptoms.
While mild symptoms can be countered during withdrawal and detox, some individuals may exhibit intolerable symptoms, which can be life-threatening. A substitute drug can be considered whose dosage is tapered off afterward. In most cases, a long-acting benzodiazepine is considered, for instance, Valium.
Contact us today and let us answer any questions you may have concerning Xanax withdrawal symptoms, signs, and detox.