People who struggle with schizophrenia often end up battling substance use disorders after trying to self-medicate the complicated symptoms that they live with on a daily basis. In some cases, schizophrenia and Xanax abuse go hand-in-hand.
Xanax is a powerful benzodiazepine drug that is prescribed to treat anxiety and some seizure disorders. This drug is addictive and people may build a tolerance to it very quickly.
Early-stage schizophrenia often begins with increasing amounts of anxiety, and some people begin a dependence on Xanax and other benzodiazepines under the well-meaning prescription of a healthcare provider. In other cases, people begin using this drug on a recreational or experimental basis, but all of these paths can lead to addiction, especially when it is combined with an illness like schizophrenia.
Some of these symptoms are also present when a person takes too much Xanax, especially diminished emotions, slowed movements, and mood changes. Xanax withdrawal symptoms may create sudden flares of anxiety which resemble schizophrenia, but these are usually only temporary and pass once the drug has completely left the user’s system.
Individuals who suffer from schizophrenia sometimes abuse Xanax, as they hope it can provide some reprieve from their persistent mental distress. The problem with using Xanax for such purposes is that its effects diminish over time.
Addiction to Xanax may produce unpleasant effects in the user’s body and mind such as the following:
Stabilization and recovery for schizophrenia and a co-occurring Xanax addiction will work better with specialized, evidence-based integrated treatment. In a quality rehab program, your treatment team will work together to help you detox from benzodiazepines and other drugs in a safe, comfortable environment.
Medication assistance and stabilization, nutrition therapy, group therapy, emotional counseling, family sessions, physical training, and medically supervised detoxification are all components of the recovery process. A better life is possible.
It is possible to overcome Xanax dependence while stabilizing symptoms of schizophrenia, and when it comes to treatment, you and your family have a number of options. We can connect you to a number of treatment programs to fit your goals, your budget, and your family. We can even help you find an experienced interventionist if you want to help someone you love. Contact us at 615-490-9376 to learn more today.
By Kathryn Millán, LPC/MHSP, Contributing Writer