Xanax – Highly Addictive
It is said to be a “cure for all evil” because it allows you to chill out, forget about problems, ease everyday stress …. The popularity of Xanax (alprazolam) made many people reach for it, treating it as an antidote to everything. Meanwhile, it is a drug that is used in anxiety states, panic attacks, agoraphobia and depression. Xanax is extremely effective, but it is also highly addictive. Therefore, treatment with it should be carried out briefly and strictly under the supervision of a doctor. Unfortunately, patients do not always stick to it like this …
Xanax is one of the benzodiazepines that entered widespread treatment in the 1960s. Their use is to mimic the compounds naturally occurring in the brain – endozepins. Benzodiazepines (BDZs) cross the blood-brain barrier and bind to specific BDZ receptors, which are part of the larger GABAergic complex. The principle is very simple. The more drug there is, the more GABA receptors are stimulated. Then there is an influx of large amounts of chloride ions inside the cell, which starts the process of hyperpolarization. This results in a reduction in the excitability of nerve cells. Between these structures, the amount of flowing electrical impulses is reduced. The result is a person feeling sleepy and calm.
Xanax Pharmacological Profile
The active substance is metabolized by an enzyme called cytochrome P450 (CYP450) to compounds with greater and lesser psychotropic activity. Clinical trials have shown that alprazolam is synthesized much better by the brain than by other organs, such as the liver. Therefore, the half-life of Xanax is longer in the central nervous system than in the periphery. After taking the drug orally, the effect of its action usually takes about 30 minutes. However, this is a typically individual issue and it may depend on the number and availability of GABAergic receptors. In addition, the metabolism of the compound also depends on other factors, e.g. tobacco addiction. In heavy smokers, the effect of alprazolam may be faster. This is because nicotine passes through the same metabolic pathway. There is a high risk when taking Xanax with grapefruit juice. It turns out that the components contained in it also engage CYP450 and as a result of such a strong stimulation, the concentration of the active substance in the blood can be up to 3 times higher.
Interactions With Other Drugs
Detailed information on the possible risks of taking Xanax is provided in the package leaflet. The active substances of the drug may interact with other chemical compounds and contribute to the reduction, increase or absence of its effect. Therefore, it is important to inform your doctor or pharmacist about all medications that are chronically taken. It is not recommended to use alprazolam together with other agents administered for depression symptoms and barbiturates. As well as grapefruit juice, protease inhibitors, azoles and macrolides can all increase the levels of Xanax in the blood. In turn, carbamazepine increases the clearance of alprazolam, which reduces its effect.
It Relaxes And Calms Down
The relaxing power of Xanax means that many people use it for no medical reason. It gives a feeling of relaxation and calms down. However, using the preparation in this way only increases the risk of addiction. It can lead to a situation where the person taking it will not be able to function without it one day.
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The duration of action of this agent is approx. 5-7 hours. Most often, after the first dose, the patient experiences drowsiness, less nervous tension and is more relaxed. The drug eliminates the feeling of anxiety and relaxes the muscles.
It Works Like A Drug
Taking Xanax too often causes it to act like a drug. The patient becomes mentally and physically addicted to it, and when he tries to limit or discontinue the drug, he develops the so-called withdrawal syndrome, felt, inter alia, through muscle aches, headaches, anxiety, restlessness or even seizures or hallucinations. In people who abuse alcohol and drugs, the risk of addiction is higher.
Alprazolam contained in the drug has a fairly short half-life, which makes it a compound with high potential for addiction. Taking it by mouth for many months may result in the development of tolerance mechanisms, leading to physical and mental dependence. This is especially dangerous when the patient has been using it for more than 12 weeks and has had problems with substance abuse in the past. Therefore, in therapeutic management, it is recommended to gradually reduce the doses of the drug or change to a pharmaceutical that has a longer duration of action.