44% of Xanax users develop a dependency. So how do you know if you’re experiencing symptoms of Xanax abuse?
Many people abusing Xanax don’t know that they’re doing so. As a result, their dependence on the substance and the consequences of the addiction further.
However, understanding various Xanax abuse symptoms can jumpstart your journey toward recovery. Doing so can help you siphon off your dependency on Xanax and regain control over your life.
Fixation on Next High
If you feel discontent without a constant Xanax high, then you’re dependent on the substance. When you’re dependent, your upcoming Xanax dosage might dominate your thinking, perhaps from as soon as you wake up until it’s time for you to go to sleep.
Xanax can be incredibly beneficial for illnesses such as anxiety and panic disorders. However, aside from alleviating those symptoms, it shouldn’t make users feel as if they need it to function or feel remotely okay.
Chronically Dulled/Impaired Senses
As mentioned before, Xanax is commonly prescribed to those suffering from anxiety and panic disorders. But if taken in too large of a dosage or too frequently, users may experience symptoms of dulled/impaired sensoriality, including:
- Blurred vision
- Impaired coordination and balance
- General fatigue
Of course, all of these can be due to users taking the prescribed dosage instructed by their doctors. If these symptoms affect your life and relationships, it’s best to speak to your doctor about potentially lowering your dosage.
However, if this is due to unprescribed use, stop using Xanax. If it’s due to overuse of Xanax beyond what’s prescribed, lower your dosage to the prescribed amount. Being unable to do either due to higher prioritization of the resulting high indicates Xanax dependence.
Engaging in Risky Behavior Due to Use
Generally speaking, properly Xanax dosages shouldn’t leave you so impaired that you have no control over your actions. But just as with most other substances, overuse can lead to risky and disruptive behavior.
That’s because irritability is a potential side effect of Xanax, especially if combined with the usage of alcohol or other substances. Users may even become violent or experience fits of rage.
In general, Xanax can cause users to lower their inhibitions, leading to reduced impulse control. They may say or do things they wouldn’t do without the influence of Xanax. Many even impulsively steal when they’re on Xanax.
Gaps in Memory
Short-term memory loss is common in Xanax users, usually when they take too much of it. This type of memory loss is called anterograde amnesia, where users don’t remember events that occurred while they were under the influence of the drug. Such as with overconsumption of alcohol, Xanax can lead to users “blacking out.”
During these blackouts, users are incredibly vulnerable to their own impulses. They may also enter riskier situations that lead to them getting harmed.
But even if they blackout at home with little tangible consequence, this symptom, as well as the others mentioned in this article, can eventually worsen to a debilitating degree. Chronic Xanax abuse can increase the chances of users developing Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and more.
Overspending on Xanax
Once again, if doctors prescribe Xanax for you, it should improve your life, not thwart it. But if you’re overspending on Xanax, mainly through illegal means, you have a dependence.
You shouldn’t be spending money on illegal Xanax usage at all. However, forgoing your usual expenses, fundamental necessities such as food and housing, for Xanax is a sure sign that you have a dependence.
Continually Increased Dosage
When you take Xanax, you begin to feel calm, your muscles start to relax, your heart rate and blood pressure decrease, and falling asleep becomes easier. However, after taking the medication consistently for a few weeks, you may notice that your anxiety and sleep problems return.
These eventually bother you so much that you feel tempted to take more Xanax than was initially prescribed, which may prompt you to consult your doctor about increasing your dosage. The body adjusts to repeated drug exposure and begins to rely on Xanax to function normally as tolerance increases.
Xanax promotes relaxation by slowing down specific central nervous system circuits. As the brain adjusts to the effects of Xanax, they become less effective at the current level. As a result, you may need to take more Xanax than usual to achieve the same results.
Use Substituting Livelihood and Hobbies
Prescribed Xanax use should make life a lot easier. This means going to work, attending social events, and embarking on your favorite hobbies should be much easier with proper treatment.
But if Xanax use starts eclipsing those aspects of your life, then it’s involved in your life more than it should be. While sustaining and improving your relationships and doing productive hobbies can enrich and enhance the quality of your life, Xanax’s dominance over your livelihood can seriously harm your physical and psychological health.
Xanax Doesn’t Have to Control Your Life
Xanax can be beneficial for those suffering from anxiety and panic disorder. But if you start abusing Xanax, it can decrease your quality of life instead of improving it. But being aware of your own Xanax abuse and being proactive about your awareness can improve your health and livelihood.
At the Altitude Recovery Community, we understand how debilitating substance addiction can be. That’s why we provide a safe space for those battling addiction, a team of experts that can help you develop the tools necessary for recovery, and a community that lets you know that you’re not alone. So if you or a loved one is experiencing a Xanax addiction, get in touch with us today!