Xanax is known for its anxiolytic activity; thus, it can be used to manage opiate withdrawal symptoms. Acting on the GABA receptors in the CNS, Xanax reduces anxiety levels and stress. However, it is not as effective as other medications used for this purpose, such as Suboxone, containing buprenorphine and naloxone. This article will explore the role of Xanax in opiate withdrawal, its side effects, and alternative treatment options.
If you have questions about or seek professional support for opiate withdrawal, you can consult with a health care professional at Confidant health.
What is Xanax?
Xanax (Alprazolam) is a fast-acting benzodiazepine medication used mainly as a short-term treatment for anxiety and panic disorders. It usually takes about half an hour to produce effects that may last up to six hours.
The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) has placed Xanax on the Schedule IV Controlled Substance list due to its potential for abuse. Like other benzodiazepines, long-term use of Xanax can lead to significant physical dependence.
Does Xanax Help with Opiate/Opioid Withdrawal?
If taken appropriately under the guidance of a licensed health professional, Xanax can help with opiate withdrawal. Opiate or heroin withdrawal mostly presents with anxiety, restlessness, and mental stress. As it reduces the stress and anxiety of opioid withdrawal, Xanax can be a good option for managing these symptoms.
However, it should always be used with caution as Xanax itself can lead to addiction. That’s why it is less recommended for opiate withdrawal. Moreover, Xanax and opioids, if taken together, can also result in severe respiratory depression.
Does Xanax help with pain?
Although Xanax doesn’t belong to the opioid class, it can help alleviate chronic pain. In fact, benzodiazepines have been used as an analgesic adjuvant with anticonvulsants in managing organic pain syndromes.