Do you suspect a loved one has a Xanax addiction? As the most widely abused prescription drug, Xanax addiction is more common than most people think.
Many people use Xanax to calm down, but the line between a quick fix and Xanax misuse is fine. If you are afraid that a loved one has crossed that line, read on. Here are the symptoms and Xanax addiction warning signs you should be looking out for.
Symptoms of Addiction to Xanax
Xanax is the most widely prescribed drug for anxiety and panic disorders. It belongs to the family of benzodiazepines, a group of chemicals that interact with the brain to boost specific biological effects. In Xanax’s case, the drug interacts with GABA, an important neurotransmitter responsible for relaxation.
Xanax has powerful sedative properties and is also psychoactive. So, you can indeed get “high” from it. Symptoms of Xanax abuse are both physical and psychological.
On the physical level, the symptoms of Xanax abuse include:
- Abnormally long periods of deep sleep
- Loss of concentration
- Memory problems
- Aimless feelings of happiness for no apparent reason
Moreover, Xanax abuse leads to tolerance. This means that the addict will need more and more Xanax to get the same “fix”. This can alter the addict’s life to revolve around buying and using Xanax.
While the physical symptoms of Xanax abuse are easy to spot, you can never be sure they are because of Xanax. However, the psychological side-effects are equally dangerous and easier to identify. These include:
- Marital problems
- Withdrawal from social activities
- Poor work performance
- Financial problems
- Social blunders
- Anxiety about when and how to take Xanax
So, with the above in mind, let’s see how you can tell if a loved one may be abusing Xanax.
Warning Signs a Loved One May Be Abusing Xanax
As we have seen above, there are many signs and symptoms of Xanax abuse. Unfortunately, all of the symptoms are common with other drug misuses. Some mental conditions can also lead to many of the symptoms of Xanax abuse.
This means that it is not always easy to tell if a loved one may be abusing Xanax. You can’t just tick off a couple of side-effects and conclude that they are abusing prescription drugs.
However, if a person is using Xanax for long periods of time, they may develop more serious side-effects. All of these are dangerous and some can even be permanent. The most dangerous and obvious side-effects of Xanax abuse include:
- Cognitive impairment
If your loved one exhibits one or more of the above, seek help immediately. Even if it is not Xanax abuse, it is still something serious.
Is My Child Using Xanax?
The symptoms of Xanax abuse affect every aspect of a person’s life. If your child is a student, Xanax abuse will manifest itself in lower academic performance. Your child might seem less motivated to attend school and they will lose contact with old friends.
Xanax withdrawal may lead to skipping school or asking for more and more pocket money. Xanax is fairly expensive, and keeping up with the increasing demands of drug abuse can rake up some serious costs.
If your child has one or more of the following, consider seeking help straight away:
- Slurred speech
- Inability to attend school
- Lack of interest for social and physical activities
- Overall confusion
Is My Parent Using Xanax?
The obvious first sign of Xanax abuse will be bottles of Xanax in your parent’s house. If your parent is using Xanax openly but they also exhibit many of the aforementioned side-effects, you should start worrying.
If your parent has been an active person but they have suddenly become more sluggish, then perhaps they are abusing Xanax. Xanax becomes especially dangerous with mixed with alcohol, so if your parent drinks socially, you should be extra careful with their Xanax problem.
Other side-effects to look for include:
- Memory problems
- Severe sedation
- Overall tiredness
Intervention for Xanax Abuse
Xanax is strongly addictive. So, if your loved one is suffering from Xanax abuse, then professional treatment is the only viable option to end the use of the drug.
Going cold turkey is not advised as it can cause severe side-effects and may even be dangerous. However, how do you go about getting your loved one into treatment?
Here is where an intervention becomes necessary. With the help of an intervention specialist, you will be able to organize an intervention to help your loved one get rid of their Xanax abuse.
While planning the intervention, the specialist will work with several family members and friends to create a structured approach. Each participant will receive a specific role and speak to the addict in turn. This structured approach minimizes objections and drives the point home.
Before the day of the intervention, your specialist will help you choose a suitable addiction treatment program. During the intervention, you will be able to persuade your loved one to seek help as soon as the intervention is over.