Doctors typically prescribe Xanax if you are diagnosed with anxiety disorder, depression, and panic attacks. This drug is also known as alprazolam, and it is under the benzodiazepine class, which is known to relax the brain.
Upon taking this prescription drug, it will help calm your senses and muscle, which helps you relax and think well. Because of its potency, doctors will just prescribe this medicine for a short timeframe, unless it is necessary to prolong medication.
Despite the medicinal benefit of this substance, there are several reports of misuse, abuse, and addiction to this drug. If you are one of those Americans who are abusing alprazolam, better get medical help as early as today. Let’s find out more about this substance.
Other Medical Functions
Besides treating anxiety and depression, this prescribed substance is also used for treating panic attacks, premenstrual symptoms, and agoraphobia, or the fear of open space. Before you take this drug, be sure you have a prescription for it to avoid overdose and dependence.
The Rising Abuse of Alprazolam
Among the general population who are using this prescribed drug, 20 percent of them are abusing it for recreational purposes. Also, there is a 13 percent increase in the adult American population who are using benzodiazepines in 2018. This means the cases of benzodiazepine and alprazolam abuse are increasing.
People in the middle age group (ages 50-64) are the ones frequently taking this drug. For young adults, they misuse this drug to self-treat their anxiety and depression disorder. The cases of abuse of this substance decrease with age, yet one must not be complacent since toxins can stay in the body for quite a while.
How Do You Take This Medicine
This prescribed drug is usually orally taken and it comes in different forms: a tablet, concentration solution, disintegrating tablet, and an extended-release tablet. Doctors typically prescribe a dose of two to four times daily for oral tablet intake of this drug. For the concentrated liquid, you need to use a dropper and dissolve the droplets in water or soda.
What is the Proper Dosage of this Drug
The safe dose of this drug varies depending on the age of the patient and his condition. There is a different dose for treating anxiety and panic disorders with this medicine.
For adults with anxiety disorder, the standard dose of an immediate-release tablet is 0.25 to 0.5 mg thrice daily. If you are letting a senior with anxiety disorder take it, the proper dose is 0.25 mg immediate-release twice or thrice a day.
For adults with panic disorders, the standard dose is 0.5 mg thrice daily with a maximum dosage of 10 mg a day. For an extended release, adults can take 3 to 6 mg daily in the morning. If it’s used to treat panic disorders for the elderly, then the right dose is 0.25 mg twice or thrice per day.
What Precautions You Need To Follow Before Taking It
This benzodiazepine is effective in treating depression and anxiety disorder, yet you need to follow special precautions to avoid overdose or any adverse reactions with the food or other medications you’re taking. Here are a few special precautions you need to observe and follow before taking this medicine:
- Don’t take it if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. For instance, if you are allergic to clonazepam or diazepam, then don’t take the drug.
- Don’t use this drug when you are already using ketoconazole or itraconazole.
- Always disclose to your doctor the vitamins and medicines you are currently using before having this drug. Here are some supplements and drugs you need to tell your doctor if you are planning of taking alprazolam: antidepressants, erythromycin, drugs for seizures and brain disorders, fluoxetine, sleeping pills, sedatives, antihistamines, and more.
- If you have glaucoma, then you won’t be allowed to use this drug.
- Make sure to tell your doctor if you are planning to undergo surgery or dental operations.
The danger of Using It With Other Substances
Alprazolam is categorized under Schedule IV controlled substances by the DEA since it has a high risk of abuse and dependence. The fatal side effects of this substance are intensified when you drink alcohol or any opioid substance. It can drastically sedate your brain, heart, and lungs, which can lead to death.
Miss A Dose? What To Do?
Once you remember that you missed a dose, quickly take it, but if it’s close to your next scheduled dose, then skip it. Never double dose to cover for your missed schedule since that can cause an overdose.
How To Properly Store This Drug
Whether you are having the extended-release or disintegrating tablet, you need to store this drug in a tight and closed container. It must be stored away from direct sunlight, heat, and moisture. Be sure to remove the cotton inside the bottle after opening it. Lastly, keep it away from your children’s reach.
Alprazolam Overdose, What To Do?
Overdose and misuse of this medicine are rampant, around 20 percent of patients are experiencing it in the U.S. If ever you or your loved one overdosed with this substance, be sure to call for medical help. Some of the serious signs of alprazolam overdose are seizure, fainting, depressed breathing. If you observe any of these symptoms, quickly call for an emergency health service near you.
The Best Time To Treat Xanax Abuse and Misuse
If you keep abusing or misusing this benzodiazepine for a longer period, the intensity of its withdrawal symptoms becomes more life-threatening. The damage on your brain and body also intensifies through time, so the best time to undergo rehab treatment is today. You need to embrace your weakness and accept the need of availing professional treatment from recovering from a substance use disorder.
There are different rehab treatments near you, but you have to select wisely since not all can meet your needs. Do some research on their facilities and available treatment programs before enrolling in their rehab recovery plan.
Bring back your healthy, normal life right now. Seek medical assistance.