Xanax Detox in New Hampshire

Xanax is a benzodiazepine substance that’s usually prescribed for anxiety disorders, insomnia, and panic attacks. However, some patients develop a dependence or addiction to it.

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Xanax is a prescription drug that works miracles in cases of generalized anxiety disorder, insomnia, and panic attacks. However, it can also be addictive. 

Therefore, a patient who develops such drug addiction should act fast. The sooner the detox starts, the better and faster the results will be.

If worried about the Xanax detox process, the patient should seek professional help. This article gives an overview of all there is to know about the Xanax detox process.

It outlines the recovery steps, what to expect during the withdrawal period, and how to get the safest treatment options.

Xanax Dependence vs. Addiction

Xanax belongs to a class of CNS depressants called benzodiazepine. It’s usually prescribed to treat anxiety disorders and sleeping disorders.

Unfortunately, the use of such substances in the long run creates a dependence that might lead to addiction. The main difference between dependence and addiction is that addiction is a compulsive behavior.

Dependence is a physical adaptation to the drug. It means that the regular use of Xanax has altered the chemistry of the patient’s brain. Therefore, when the patients try to reduce the dose or quit altogether, they suffer severe withdrawal symptoms that can be life-threatening.

On the other hand, Xanax addiction is a compulsive behavior or a chemical dependency. It drives the patient to seek the use of drugs to release serotonin, dopamine, and other neurotransmitters.

Thus, the symptoms of withdrawal are more severe with addiction. The question is how to know the difference between both. In other words, how do the patients know that they have crossed the line from dependence to addiction?

Signs of Xanax Addiction

According to The American Psychiatric Association (APA), there are four stages of addiction. If you’re worried about developing an addiction to Xanax, keep an eye out for the following symptoms:

  • Impaired control: A strong urge to use the drug and several failed attempts to control the substance abuse.
  • Social problems: Failure to meet family obligations, finish school, or attend social events due to substance abuse.
  • Risky use: Continued use of the drug despite facing health issues and physical risks.
  • Drug effects: Increased tolerance for the drug. That’s the need for a larger dose to get the same effect or feel normal.

Who Is More Likely to Get Xanax Addiction?

Although everyone can get addicted to Xanax if they use it long enough, some people are more prone to develop this dependence faster than others.

For example, people with a history of substance use disorder are more prone to get addicted to Xanax. In addition, those who have a history of alcohol or opioid use are at high risk of Xanax abuse.

How Much Xanax Can Lead to Addiction?

Xanax is classified as a Schedule IV controlled substance. That means that this drug has a crucial medical use, but it still has some potential for abuse.

Xanax physiological dependence starts in patients who consume more than 4 mg for a period that exceeds 12 weeks. However, this isn’t a rule because some patients still exhibit withdrawal symptoms with lower doses. Therefore, even with less than 4 mg of Xanax daily, no one is risk-free.

Xanax detox

Why Quit Xanax?

If Xanax is a fast-acting prescription drug used to relieve several disorders, why should a patient quit it?

Simple! Xanax isn’t recommended for long-term use. In fact, it comes with a whole set of red flags. For instance, you shouldn’t use it with alcohol or other opioids. In addition, it’s not approved for people with liver problems.

If you use your prescribed dose of Xanax for an extended period, here’s what you’re risking:

  • Forgetfulness
  • General lethargy
  • Inability to speak or think coherently
  • Lack of focus
  • Hand and feet swelling
  • Getting suicidal thoughts
  • Blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • Poor coordination
  • Regular headaches
  • Aggression, hostility, and unjustified rage
  • Mania, delusions, and confusion
  • Heart palpitations

How Does Xanax Detox Work?

Benzodiazepine withdrawal is a challenge. That’s why the World Health Organization recommends doing it under the supervision of medical professionals. In fact, trying Xanax detox on your own can lead to life-threatening consequences.

Typically, Xanax detox involves giving the patient another long-lasting benzodiazepine drug to help with the withdrawal symptoms. Later, the healthcare professionals gradually lower the dose over the course of days or weeks to ease the withdrawal symptoms.

That said, you should be aware that Xanax medical detox is just the first step in the road to recovery. There are several other steps to take in order to avoid a relapse.

For instance, detox should be accompanied by:

  • Counseling: Addiction usually comes with psychological issues. Thus, going to counseling while medically managing drug doses can help significantly.
  • Specialized therapy: Depending on each case, the patient may benefit from adventure therapy, relaxation therapy, etc.

That’s why any Xanax detox program combines medical detox with psychological counseling. This combination is the safest treatment option to get over both mental and physical dependence on substances.

What Medications Are Used in Xanax Detox?

Medically assisted Xanax detox requires the use of certain medications to alleviate the severity of the withdrawal symptoms. Typically, Xanax addiction treatment involves administering longer-acting benzodiazepines in gradually lowered doses.

These medications include diazepam, chlordiazepoxide, and clonazepam. This technique helps stabilize the patient’s physical and mental conditions before the discontinuation of the drug to treat addiction.

Flumazenil is another key substance in treating Xanax addiction. It’s a benzodiazepine antagonist medication that blocks the effect of Xanax. Therefore, it can help mitigate the acuteness of the withdrawal symptoms.

Can Xanax Detox Be Done at Home?

The abrupt cessation of Xanax can be risky. It can cause acute symptoms that may lead to seizures, disorientation, or even death. Therefore, the withdrawal process requires that the patient stay under the supervision of a medical team.

Quitting Xanax without medical support can be fatal, but how? With the sudden discontinuation of Xanax, the risk of seizures increases.

During a seizure, the human brain fails to function properly. In other words, a patient may stop breathing altogether for the entire duration of the seizure. This lack of oxygen may cause brain damage or even death.

In addition to the physical risk, quitting Xanax cold turkey can cause some psychological withdrawal symptoms. Some patients try unusual and dangerous actions to relieve their symptoms. These dangerous thoughts can turn into suicidal attempts in some cases. This is the main reason for relapse.

What Are the Symptoms of Xanax Withdrawal?

Xanax detox is characterized by severe withdrawal symptoms that come in two phases. In addition to those phases, some patients may experience rebound withdrawal symptoms.

Phase One of Xanax Withdrawal

This phase starts once the effect of the last dose of Xanax starts fading from the patient’s body. Its severity depends on factors such as the dose and duration of the drug use. The symptoms also vary according to the patient’s mental and physical condition.

Typically, the initial Xanax withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Seizure
  • Sweating
  • Insomnia
  • Rapid pulse
  • Nausea
  • Anxiety disorders
  • General discomfort
  • Vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Hand tremors

Phase Two of Xanax Withdrawal

After quitting Xanax completely, the patient may suffer from Xanax Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS). These are acute physical symptoms, including:

  • Increased cravings for Xanax
  • Panic disorders
  • Change in appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Restlessness
  • Headaches
  • Lack of concentration
  • Muscle pain
  • Depression
  • Memory and cognition issues
  • Difficulty performing complex tasks

Rebound Withdrawal Symptoms

Some patients may suffer from rebound symptoms. That involves a repetition of the initial symptoms for which Xanax was prescribed in the first place. 

For instance, physicians typically prescribe Xanax for sleeping disorders, generalized anxiety disorders, and panic disorders. When these patients quit and go through the withdrawal process, they may experience more acute symptoms of these initial disorders.

This rebound phase is different from the second PAWS phase. With the help of addiction specialists, such rebound anxiety and insomnia usually resolve within a few weeks. Think of it as a final test; if the patient is strong enough to pass this phase, he/she is less likely to relapse.

How Long Does Xanax Detox Take?

The typical Xanax detox timeline starts within the first 24 hours of the last consumption. That’s primarily due to the drug’s short half-life, which means that the human body can absorb and filter it fast.

The withdrawal symptoms begin within six to eight hours of consumption. It can take between a few days and a few weeks.

Once you start the recovery process, you need to be ready for the physical and psychological symptoms you’ll face. In fact, Xanax withdrawal comes in two phases. 

The first features acute physical symptoms and lasts between 5 and 28 days, and the second is a more moderate phase that may last for as long as an entire year. The actual duration of the detox process depends on several individual factors.

Xanax Withdrawal Timeline

Somewhere between six and 12 hours after the last dose, the withdrawal process starts. The first symptoms are irritability and increased anxiety. These symptoms usually get worse during the rest of the withdrawal period.

During the first few days, the withdrawal symptoms are at their worst. Patients may suffer from muscle aches, shaking, and sweating. Rebound symptoms may also appear at this phase. Then, the patient starts feeling an improvement by day four.

After a week, the worst is mostly over. The symptoms start fading one by one, although insomnia and anxiety may still persist.

After two weeks, some patients still feel very mild symptoms. However, things will be a lot less severe, and that’s the end of phase one. Unfortunately, that’s when phase two starts with the severe and protracted PAWS symptoms.

These symptoms of phase two may fluctuate for years. Therefore, it’s crucial for patients to keep their counseling appointments and specialized therapies in check. Such psychological help plays a pivotal role in keeping the patient from falling off the wagon.

Factors Affecting the Severity of Xanax Withdrawal Symptoms

Generally speaking, substance use disorder is a relative matter. That means that the tendency for addiction, as well as the severity of the withdrawal symptoms, vary according to several factors. For that matter, benzodiazepine is no exception. 

Here are some of the factors affecting the severity of Xanax withdrawal symptoms:

Factors Related to Drug Use

The dose and the duration of Xanax abuse are major factors that determine the duration and severity of the withdrawal period. For instance, patients who take large doses or use Xanax for longer durations are bound to get more acute symptoms.

In addition, if Xanax is combined with the use of alcohol or any other drug, the recovery journey is more likely to be harder and longer.

Factors Related to the Patient

The patient’s history of medical conditions can shape the initial symptoms suffered in the first withdrawal phase. For instance, people with liver problems face more acute symptoms. That’s why it’s crucial to get medical and psychological assistance to have the smoothest detox experience possible.

There are also racial differences. Interestingly, Asians seem to foster a higher concentration of Xanax than their Caucasian counterparts. In other words, Asian people need a smaller dose of this drug than Caucasians to reach the same effect. Therefore, they’re more likely to face harder withdrawal symptoms.

In addition, the patient’s weight and age can make a difference. Xanax remains longer in the systems of elderly and obese patients. That’s why they suffer more severe symptoms, but their withdrawal timeline gets somehow delayed.


Xanax is a benzodiazepine substance that’s usually prescribed for anxiety disorders, insomnia, and panic attacks. However, some patients develop a dependence or addiction to it.

That addiction may lead to severe withdrawal symptoms during Xanax detox. Therefore, the patient needs to follow strict addiction treatment programs under the supervision of healthcare providers.

The withdrawal process comes in two phases that may take years. That’s why the patient needs medical and psychological support for a long period of time.

No matter how hard Xanax detox can be, it’s a lot healthier than coping with addiction.

Published on: 2023-11-24
Updated on: 2024-05-10