Xanax use and teenagers

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We are all aware of how prevalent marijuana and alcohol abuse is lately in Los Angeles, California. However, there is a new drug that is becoming more popular among teens: Xanax. This drug is common and legal since it helps ease mental health problems like anxiety and stress. However, its chemical composition, alongside its euphoric effect, can lead to Xanax abuse and addiction. A 2012 report by IMS Health shows that over 94 million Benzodiazepines prescriptions are dispensed yearly. The constant rise of Xanax addiction cases in Los Angeles is alarming, and you have to do everything you can to prevent your teen from being another victim.

Here are the things you should know about Xanax and Xanax addiction.

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What is Xanax?

This drug is a brand of benzodiazepine, which depresses the central nervous system. It enhances GABA activity in the brain, reducing anxiety, and delivering a calming effect that many users find enjoyable. In the United States, Xanax is one of the most commonly prescribed drugs for psychiatric problems. It is also prescribed to treat panic attacks, stress, sleep difficulties, and other mental health issues. However, since Xanax or “benzos” have a calming effect, users are likely to develop dependence and addiction.

Teens and Xanax

Teenage years bring stress and mental health instability, causing kids to self-medicate with sedative drugs like Xanax to relieve that stress, anxiety, and depression-like symptoms.
In a 2019 report by the Data Health Resources for Child & Adolescent Health, an estimate of 1,200,000 children (from ages 3 to 17) in California were experiencing mental, emotional, developmental, or behavioural problems. It is predicted that around 30% of teens aged 13 to 18 years old will be diagnosed with mental health issues in the upcoming years.
Developing anxiety and stress is, in fact, the most significant factor as to why teen Xanax use is so prevalent in Los Angeles. On the other hand, mentally healthy teens enjoy the substance’s euphoric effect, which causes them to take the substance continuously. 

How does Xanax work?

Xanax is an FDA-approved prescription drug that helps ease symptoms of anxiety disorders. It is proven to help reduce anxiety symptoms such as restlessness and muscle tension. It works by elevating the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is a natural neurotransmitter acid in the brain that inhibits specific brain signals and decreases the nervous system’s activity. When GABA attaches to the GABA receptor, a protein inside the brain, it starts producing a sedating effect. Although GABA is a naturally occurring neurotransmitter acid, it can also be found in fermented foods such as kimchi. There are also GABA supplements, such as Xanax, available on the market.

RxList lists some of the conditions that Xanax can treat.

Xanax Abuse and Addiction

Since Xanax has immediate sedative effects, many teenagers become fans of it. However, uncontrolled use may lead to Xanax addiction and abuse. Xanax addiction refers to prolonged usage that has short-term and long-term adverse effects. Furthermore, this can lead to substance dependence. Meanwhile, Xanax abuse refers to overuse due to a desperate need to relieve anxiety and stress symptoms.
Like other types of substance addiction (e.g., marijuana addiction), peer pressure, anxiety, stress, family problems, and peer pressure are the main reasons for teen Xanax abuse. Unsupervised use of Xanax is also one of the main reasons why teens become addicted to it. If your teen is taking Xanax, it is to seek the help of medical professionals in Los Angeles, California. Key Mentoring and Key Companioning of Key Transitions can help you prevent or treat Teen Xanax abuse and addiction. 

Effects of Xanax Abuse

Xanax abuse in Los Angeles is a growing problem. Similar to other types of substance addiction, Xanax addiction can have severe consequences. Dependence on Xanax can lead to fatal outcomes.
According to The Neuropathology of Drug Addictions and Drug Abuse, the short-term and long-term effects of Xanax abuse include: 

Short-term effects

  • Lightheadedness.
  • Drowsiness/dizziness.
  • Reduced reflex actions.
  • Reduced thinking process.
  • Lowered respiratory rate, blood pressure, and heart rate.
  • Shortness of breath.

Long-term effects

  • Respiratory issues
    Xanax abuse increases the user’s probability of developing
    respiratory diseases such as pneumonia. Xanax produces chronic respiratory suppression, and it can also worsen existing issues and increase a teen’s vulnerability to infectious diseases.
  • Cardiac issues
    Xanax slows down the
    heart rate and blood pressure of the user. People taking Xanax for a prolonged period are likely to have cardiac issues, malfunctions, and heart failure, often leading to fatal outcomes.
  • Dependence
    Teen Xanax use can lead to dependence. When someone is dependent on a substance, they will start to feel the need to take to be able to function.
  • Seizures
    Xanax use might disturb brain functions and lead to seizures. Continuous seizures might lead to brain damage, coma, and loss of life. 
  • Cognitive issues
    Teen Xanax use may result in the malfunction of cognitive processes since it might cause shortened attention span and memory loss. 
  • Excessive Xanax use
    The effect of Xanax is reduced over time since the body naturally builds tolerance. As such, teens who use Xanax tend to eventually increase the amount they take, which might cause serious problems. 

Teen Xanax Use Prevention

Xanax addiction in Los Angeles is rapidly increasing. The best way to stop Xanax addiction and abuse is by informing our teens about this growing problem. Parents have a vital role in preventing their teens from using Xanax.
Since Xanax has medicinal purposes, there are cases where teens have to use the substance. If that is the case, you should seek professional guidance, such as Key Transitions, Key Mentoring and Key Companioning.

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Xanax Addiction and Abuse Withdrawal

Withdrawal from Xanax use and addiction could also be fatal without help from a professional. Some of the effects of withdrawal from Xanax use include, but are not limited to: 

  • Dizziness
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia
  • Numbness
  • Palpitation
  • Blurry vision
  • Headaches
  • Mood swings

Xanax withdrawal needs professional supervision. The best way to go about it is to look into Teen Xanax Treatment and Teen Xanax Rehab clinics in Los Angeles, California.
Xanax addiction can be treated, but it requires professional oversight to prevent things from getting worse. Teen Xanax Treatment is also helpful to ensure the continued recovery of teens who are withdrawing from Xanax use. Aside from recovery and abstinence, teens can also gain several benefits from treatment. Here are various programs that are proven to help teens recover from Xanax addiction in Los Angeles:

Teen Partial Hospitalization Program (Teen PHP)
Teen PHP is a structured and intensive treatment for substance addiction, such as Teen Xanax use. This program operates 8 hours a day, five days per week. Typically, teen PHP lasts for 3-4 weeks and is carried out in a comfortable environment. As opposed to the Residential and Inpatient Treatment programs, teens can go home after their daily session. Teen PHP is designed to improve the patients’ emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. 

Intensive Teen Outpatient Program (Teen IOP)
Teen IOP is a comprehensive program that aims to improve teens’ health by equipping them with the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to feel good again. Teen IOP includes substance abuse treatment, family therapy, recovery services, and prevention and education services. This program operates nine hours per week and typically lasts from 30 to 120 days.

Teen Sobriety Program
The Teen Sobriety Program is a critical step toward continuing teens’ sobriety. It is an aftercare program that guides teenagers as they go back to their everyday lives. With this program, teens can keep focusing on their recovery. It includes monitoring and supervision, academic support, and more activities to help them maintain their sobriety.
Cases of teen Xanax addiction in Los Angeles are constantly rising, and they often lead to significant issues like Xanax abuse and Xanax addiction. They might also cause severe short-term and long-term consequences if not addressed immediately. If your teen is struggling with Xanax, seek the professional help of Key Transitions in Los Angeles.
Key Transitions offers Teen PHP, Teen IOP, and Teen Sober Living Programs, as well as a Key Companioning and Key Mentoring Program. Key Transitions accepts most PPO insurance plans, except for the stand-alone services (Key Mentoring and Key Companioning). If you want to learn more about Teen Xanax Addiction Treatment, contact us today and learn more about the programs we offer. We at Key Transitions can offer the best possible help by providing teen drug treatment and by our teen mental health services to cure their various addictions. You can also visit us at 1251 Westwood Blvd Suite 300, Los Angeles, to check our facility.

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