If you are struggling with Xanax addiction and want to quit, then you have three addiction recovery options open to you, including:
- Self-help: wean yourself off of the drug over several months. This requires having in place a strong personal support network, a well-researched dosage plan and, of course, exceptional willpower. That said, many choose this path and are successful.
- Doctor-supervised withdrawal: ask your physician to design a program to slowly reduce your dosage until you are clear; your doctor assists by managing prescriptions and by prescribing drugs to reduce withdrawal symptoms. Not all physicians will do this, however.
- Professional rehab for Xanax addiction: hire a local hospital or recovery facility to guide you through the process of addiction recovery. Outpatient programs let you sleep in your own bed. Inpatient programs check you into a professionally-run facility.
Rehab is not for everyone.
Each person is different.
The choice of whether to check yourself into a rehab program usually boils down to whether you have circumstances or people in your life that may cause you to relapse before you are completely drug-free.
Before deciding on the right recovery path, it is important to understand the nature of the battle you are fighting when you try to quit Xanax.
Xanax Addiction Changes More Than Your Mood
Xanax alters the function of the GABA receptors in your brain, and this reduces anxiety and creates feelings of pleasure.
Over long periods of use (months to years), Xanax actually changes the fundamental behavior of your brain receptors and your nervous system. As these changes in your nervous system occur, tolerance, dependency and ultimately physical addiction can develop.
You end up needing to take more Xanax just to retain normal brain function. These changes often take many months to reverse.
When your brain has been fundamentally altered like this, you need to understand that ending a Xanax addiction isn’t just about you controlling your behavior – it is literally a battle between your will and your body.
And quitting Xanax on your own can hurt you, if you’re not careful.
The Role of a Rehab Program
Helping you win this battle is where rehab comes in.
Whether you choose an outpatient or an inpatient program, rehab facilities have staff who are experienced in dealing with all aspects of Xanax addiction. They understand the changes that have impacted your body and mind.
Rehab professionals also have many tools and techniques at their disposal that can help you manage your dosage down over time and keep you clean for the long term.
Quality rehab programs help you accomplish a number of things that you probably cannot or will not do on your own, including:
- Address the medical AND physical problems caused by Xanax use. This includes detoxifying your body, and prescribing drugs to help alleviate withdrawal symptoms.
- Help you develop coping strategies and tactics to prevent emotional triggers from driving you back into drug abuse.
- Introduce you to other people who are in a similar situation, people who understand what you are going through.
- Teach you how to deal with life’s issues in a constructive manner. This includes more than just “not using”, and can cover many aspects of your life that may have caused stress such as: finances, exercise regimens, your eating habits and personal relationships.
- Design a self-help treatment plan to follow after you leave the program, to help you remain sober and healthy for the long-run.
If you are struggling with addiction – or if Xanax use has created a negative impact in your life – it’s good to know that this sort of professional help is available, if you need it.
5 Types of Xanax Rehab Programs
If you think a professional rehab program makes sense for you, then take a look at the programs near you. Depending on where you live, these may include:
- Individual / personal counselors: meet regularly with an addiction counselor in an office setting.
- Family counselors: your family attends counseling with or without you. Family counselors help everyone understand the recovery process, and it teaches them how to heal from any emotional or other damage causes by the addiction.
- Local support groups: Narcotics Anonymous and similar groups make it possible to surround yourself with supportive, experienced fellow recovering addicts.
- Residential inpatient programs: where you live in a controlled environment with other people in recovery, for several weeks to 3 months.
- Outpatient recovery programs: these are commonly offered by hospitals and local substance abuse centers. You’ll attend these for several hours a day during the workweek and on weekends.
Ask For a Referral
Talk with your personal physician about your local recovery options. There’s no need for you to speak with a psychiatrist about your drug addiction. Just ask your doctor for a referral. You can also talk with local volunteer or support group for a referral.
Talk With Your Insurance Provider
Due to the Affordable Care Act, most insurance plans today cover at least some part of drug rehab. Call your insurance company to learn about local treatment options. They may be able to offer a referral, as well.
Next, ask them how much of the cost of treatment your insurance plan will cover.
Benefits of Inpatient Recovery
Spending a month or more away from your family, friends and regular life can be challenging emotionally, but it may be the best way for you to recover.
Especially if you’ve used Xanax with alcohol or other drugs.
That’s because inpatient rehab programs control two of the most important variables in recovery:
- eliminating access to drugs, and
- avoiding people who enable drug use.
If Xanax is readily available to you, then a controlled recovery environment is an excellent way to keep you free of drugs until you have learned how to stay clean.
In addition to keeping you away from drugs, other benefits of inpatient recovery include:
- Keep you away from enablers and your drug-using friends
- A calm, controlled environment that helps you concentrate totally on recovery
- Professional recovery specialists available to answer your questions, 24/7.
- Time alone, to think and to work through tough issues, without the distractions of daily life.
Whatever path you choose, understand that recovery from Xanax addiction will take time and require patience.
Pick The Right Program For You
Make sure the facility is accredited in your state to provide treatment for chemical dependency. This is critical.
When you speak with a center, ask about financial arrangements up front. Many programs offer financing programs that let you spread the expense over time.
If you aren’t able to discuss financial matters yourself, then ask a trusted family member to do it for you.
Ask the center how much experience they have with Xanax addiction, verses other drugs. Most centers today have plenty of experience, because benzos are one of the most-frequently abused prescription drugs they see.