Xanax, also known as alprazolam, is a prescription medication used to treat anxiety and panic disorders. This type of medication belongs in a class called benzodiazepines, which work on the brain and central nervous system in order to bring about a calming effect on the user. As such, it works by increasing the amount of gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. Increased GABA is correlated with a reduction in stress levels and, as such, people who take Xanax typically feel a great reduction in their anxiety and panic disorders.
However, while Xanax can reduce the stress levels in the user, it is only meant as a temporary fix for anxiety. Because Xanax is highly addictive in nature, it is extremely dangerous for a person to take this medication long-term, especially if they misuse or abuse the drug. As such, it is imperative that if an individual is seeking relief from anxiety or a panic disorder that they understand the side-effects associated with taking Xanax and what withdrawal from Xanax can look like before taking this medication. On the other hand, if Xanax addiction is already at play, it is essential to the individual’s health and well-being that they seek immediate medical guidance. This article will address all of these concerns by diving deeper into the effects Xanax has on an individual and how to seek appropriate help if the individual is struggling with an addiction to this medication.
Side Effects of Green Xanax
There are many different forms of pills that Xanax can take. By prescription, Xanax is available as a:
- Green pill with 3 mg strength
- White rectangle with 2 mg strength
- Blue round with 2 mg strength
- Blue oval with 1 mg strength
- Yellow pill with 1 mg strength
- Orange pill with .5 mg strength
- White pill with .5 mg strength
- Peach pill with .5 mg strength
- White oval pill with .25 mg strength
Although all forms of Xanax produce similar effects for the user. The main reason for so many variations and colors is due to the fact that each manufacturer picks their own designs and colors for the medication. However, to simplify things and for the sake of this article, we will explore the highest dose of Xanax available, the green Xanax bar.
Despite green Xanax typically being the highest dose of Xanax available, the dosage is so close to that of the yellow and white Xanax bars that the effects are much the same. Because this is a very high dosage of Xanax, it is essential to the health and safety of the user to be constantly monitored by a healthcare professional while taking this medication.
The effects of Xanax can vary person-to-person depending on a variety of factors unique to that individual, such as: their weight, age, any coexisting medical conditions they may have, the dosage of Xanax taken, and whether it is taken with any other substances or medications. However, some common side effects of taking Xanax include:
- Sleep difficulties/insomnia
- Memory problems
- Slurred speech
- Poor coordination or balance
- Difficulty concentrating
- Increased sweating
- Upset stomach
- Appetite changes
- Weight changes
- Swelling in hands or feet
- Muscle weakness
- Dry mouth
- Blurred vision
- Stuffy nose
- Low libido/loss of interest in sex
Some more serious side effects that require immediate medical help include:
- Signs of an allergic reaction (swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat)
- Feeling of lightheadedness or like you may pass out
- A seizure
- Increase in risk-taking behavior
- Racing thoughts
- Increased energy with a decreased need for sleep
- Double vision
- Jaundice (yellowing of skin or eyes)
- Double vision
- Becoming easily agitated or very talkative
Higher doses of Xanax can be fatal to the user. An individual should never take more than the dosage prescribed to them by their doctor. High doses of Xanax are correlated with a complication known as the “Rambo effect”, which happens when the user starts exhibiting behaviors very abnormal to them. This could include things like increased aggression, promiscuity, or theft.
As this is not a complete list of side-effects that can occur when taking Xanax, it is imperative to your well-being that if you encounter any abnormal or uncomfortable side-effects while taking this medication that you discuss them with your doctor.
Withdrawal from Green Xanax
Just as you should discuss any abnormal side-effects with your doctor, you should also seek medical guidance when experiencing any withdrawal symptoms from this medication. Because Xanax is so addictive, it is possible that many people taking this drug may end up developing a tolerance or addiction to the drug without even realizing it. Some withdrawal symptoms associated with Xanax can include:
- Thoughts of suicide or self-harm
- Panic attacks
- Racing thoughts
- Uncontrolled muscle movements
When an individual is tapering from Xanax they may feel an increase in anxiety and agitation. An individual may even experience varying degrees of discomfort, like they are crawling out of their skin or having uncomfortable and intense feelings of restlessness.
The withdrawal symptoms typically appear within the first 8 to 12 hours after the individual took their last dose of Xanax. Generally speaking, withdrawal symptoms are the most intense on the second day with improvements by the fourth or fifth day, however, psychological symptoms like depression and anxiety may last much longer.
Treatment for an Addiction to Green Xanax
Because detoxing off Xanax can be dangerous, it is imperative that one seek the help of a trained medical professional before attempting a detox on their own. A trained professional will be able to most appropriately and safely taper one’s dosage of Xanax over a period of time in order to mitigate the potentially intense withdrawal symptoms that may occur. This is particularly true for someone who has been misusing or abusing the medication for a long duration of time.
One of the most effective and safest ways to ensure an individual detoxes off Xanax appropriately is to seek help through an inpatient drug rehab facility. An inpatient rehab has a medical team on staff 24/7 to ensure that if there were a medical necessity to arise, they would be there to help.
If you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction to Xanax, it is imperative that help be sought before it’s too late. Reach out to a friendly enrollment advisor to start down the path of sobriety. Your future health and well-being deserve to get on the path to recovery and fulfillment right now.