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Xanax Addiction Treatment and Rehabilitation

Not many people are aware of the fact that alprazolam, sold under the brand name ‘Xanax’ is a very addictive substance. It is a common misconception that since Xanax is a prescription medicine, not any significant harmful side effects are associated with it. This belief is very wrong. There is a dire need to raise awareness regarding this matter. There is a large number of Xanax addicts in United States. Most of the patients start taking Xanax for therapeutic purposes and end up becoming addicted to it. So it is very important to strictly adhere to the dosage prescribed by the doctor. While using Xanax, there is a great risk to develop tolerance so every time it takes higher amounts of the drug to produce effects. Tolerance is the first sign of dependence. But it is never too late to reach out for help. The recovery is always possible. There are many rehabilitation centers that help addicts recover and go back to a normal life. A number of treatment options are available to facilitate the process of recovery. Studies show that medications combined with therapy can be immensely helpful during the process. However, for some people, multiple and long term treatment programs are needed to help them live a life of sobriety.

Table of Contents:

  • 1.General Treatment Approach for Xanax Addiction
    • Detoxification Process
    • Partial hospitalization Treatment Program
    • Outpatient Treatment Program
    • Use of Behavioral Therapies
    • Aftercare Programs
  • 2.Use of Medications for the Treatment of Xanax Addiction
  • 3.Relapse Prevention Techniques

General Treatment Approach for Xanax Addiction:

Multiple treatment options are available for Xanax addicts. It depends upon the needs and condition of the patient that which one will suit him the best.  Specialized nonhospital settings provide these treatment options. Here is a general treatment plan for Xanax addiction:

  • Detoxification Process:
    Detoxification is a process by which the body gets itself rid of harmful chemical accumulated due to Xanax abuse. Detox centers are Partial hospitalization settings that provide 24/7 medical care under expert supervision. Detox can be carried out at home but admitting in a detox center is particularly recommended for Xanax detoxification process due to the deadly side effects associated with Xanax withdrawal.
  • Partial hospitalization treatment programs:
    During Partial hospitalization treatment, patients are made to live in a specially designed treatment facility. The duration for which the treatment lasts depends upon the condition and progress of the patient. During the process, the patients are provided continuous medical supervision. Chances of recovery increase a great deal for patients who opt for Partial hospitalization treatment programs. It is particularly recommended for the patients with long term Xanax abuse history. Statistics show that patients who attend an Partial hospitalization treatment program are less likely to relapse.
  • Outpatient treatment programs:
    Outpatient treatment programs are similar to Partial hospitalization treatment programs excluding the living in part. The patients are allowed to live at their home and perform their everyday duties. Outpatient treatment programs can be an option for those patients who did not abuse Xanax for long periods of time and those who are determined to make a recovery with a supportive family at their back. The chances to relapse are greater if only an outpatient treatment program is attended. It is better to sign up for an outpatient treatment program after the completion of an Partial hospitalization one.
  • Use of Behavioral Therapies:
    The importance of therapy cannot be denied. Therapy, combined with other treatment options, is an important part of treatment process.
    Behavioral therapies focus on finding the root cause that led a patient towards addiction and eradicating them. They also help patients to develop positive mechanisms to cope up with life situations. Some of purposes served by therapy include:

    • Identifying triggers that led the addict to abuse and helping him cope with those situations and things in a better way in future
    • Helping the addict successfully maintain the life of sobriety
    • Helping the addict to find a way to resist cravings and fight of urges
    • Teaching the addict healthy mechanisms of coping with life situations without the usage of drug
    • Helping the addict to revive relationships with other people
    • Helping the addict to perform better at school, office and other everyday situations

A number of therapies have been designed to help the patients. The National Institute of Drug Abuse suggests that these therapies can be helpful in the process of recovery:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT):
    Cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on addressing the false beliefs and situations that led a patient to the usage of drug. It also teaches the patients that cravings and thoughts to relapse may come but resisting them is important. Healthy coping techniques are taught to the patients to deal with urges.
  • Contingency Management intervention:
    This therapy is based on reward system. Patients who act in healthy ways and successfully manage to avoid negative urges are rewarded. Reward can be a great way to motivate patients to perform better.
  • Couples therapy/Family therapy:
    It involves spouse and family members in the process of therapy. The goal is to improve relationships and decrease the emotional distance between the patient and his loved ones.

Aftercare programs:

Aftercare programs can help the patient a great deal to successfully live a life of sobriety. A number of self help groups and treatment groups are available for the patient to join. In these groups, patients come together every once in a while and discuss their problems. Aftercare programs can be a great way to keep the patient motivated. The patient learns a lot from the struggles and coping mechanisms of other patients. Statistics reveal that patients who sign up for aftercare programs are less likely to relapse.

Use of Medications for the Treatment of Xanax Addiction:

Multiple medications can be prescribed for the patients going through the process of recovery. These medications may help to reduce the pain produced from withdrawal symptoms. For example, diazepam, another benzodiazepine, maybe used to treat severe withdrawal symptoms such as seizures. Seizures may prove to be fatal if left untreated. Diazepam acts as a substitute for Xanax during the process of tapering off the drug. It should be made sure that medical supervision is provided through the process since diazepam can be addictive itself.

Anxiety is another notable symptom produced during the process of recovery so non-addictive medications are prescribed by the doctors to treat anxiety for long periods of time. Most of the drugs used for the treatment of anxiety have addictive properties so a medical professional should be consulted to help determine a course of treatment that can be helpful for a particular patient.

Relapse Prevention Techniques:

Even after the patient has made a full recovery, the chances of a relapse always persist and it is not possible to completely eliminate them. However, efforts can be made to reduce the chances by making some simple changes in the lifestyle.

  • Continuing therapy even after recovery can be very helpful. The patient may want to go back to drugs in stressful situations. Therapy teaches how to successfully tackle these situations.
  • Know about your triggers and how to deal with them. During the treatment, the patient learns about his triggers and how to deal with them.
  • Stress can be a major trigger for Xanax abuse. It is important to avoid stressful situations and learn how to deal with them in a healthy way.
  • Exercise, yoga and a healthy life style prove to be very helpful to manage stress and resist cravings.


Road to drug and alcohol recovery is easy if you follow our extensive addiction recovery guide.