Xanax is the name of a popular medication that contains the active ingredient alprazolam. The use of this medication comes with certain side effects and risks, including memory loss. Memory issues are controllable in people who follow their prescriptions. However, they can be much worse in people addicted to Xanax. By seeking Xanax addiction treatment, you can steer clear of lasting harm to your memory.
If you are concerned that Xanax addiction has damaged your memory, our treatment experts at Memphis Recovery Centers can help. We specialize in the treatment of all manner of substance problems, including problems with Xanax. Our evidence-based Xanax addiction treatment center in Memphis, Tennessee supports all aspects of your addiction recovery. Learn more from our team today by calling 901-272-7751 or completing our online form.
What Is Xanax?
Xanax is a brand-name medication that contains the active ingredient alprazolam. It is part of a class of drugs called benzodiazepines, which are central nervous system depressants. Doctors may prescribe it to treat anxiety or panic disorders. However, because of its high potential for abuse and addiction, they only do so when other treatments, such as therapy, have failed.
People who abuse Xanax do so for its calming and sedative effects. When they take it in large doses or use it recreationally, they put themselves at risk of developing tolerance, dependence, and addiction. These risks are even higher if they already have a history of substance abuse or mental health problems.
How Does Xanax Affect Memory?
Xanax works by slowing down the activity of the brain. As a result, it can cause problems with memory, both in the short-term and long-term. Short-term effects include difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness, and trouble multitasking. Long-term effects are more serious and can include memory loss, impaired judgment, and problems with learning and retaining new information.
People who abuse Xanax are also more likely to experience blackouts, during which they cannot remember what happened while they were under the influence of the drug. These periods of amnesia can be especially concerning because they increase the risk of accidents and injuries.
In some cases, the memory problems caused by Xanax abuse can persist even after a person stops taking the drug. This is known as post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS). PAWS can cause problems with memory, concentration, and mental clarity that last for weeks or months after someone quits using Xanax.
Doctors typically use Xanax, in particular, to treat panic disorder and other anxiety disorders. All benzodiazepines have a chance of producing side effects in users. One common effect is memory loss. The specific form of memory loss associated with these medications is called anterograde amnesia. This amnesia does not affect your memories. Instead, it disrupts your ability to turn new short-term memories into long-term memories.
Xanax is most likely to produce memory issues for people who:
- Take it in high doses
- Are especially sensitive to its effects
- Receive it through an IV
If amnesia occurs, high doses of Xanax may make it worse. Still, many people don’t realize their memory has been affected unless
someone else tells them.
Xanax Memory Loss Recovery
People taking Xanax as prescribed usually have only mild memory loss. It’s important to remember that this loss is reversible. All you need to do is stop taking the medication. However, you can’t stop taking Xanax all at once. If you do, you expose yourself to the full effects of benzodiazepine withdrawal. To avoid this, doctors reduce your dose of Xanax gradually. When this process is done, the medication will be out of your system. As a rule, your amnesia will then fade away.
Xanax Memory Problems and Addiction
Xanax addiction changes the equation for memory problems. This is true for a couple of reasons. First, people affected by Xanax addiction typically take large and frequent doses of the medication. This pattern of use not only helps sustain and worsen addiction. It also increases the odds that memory loss will occur.
Also, people addicted to Xanax often start using it in larger and larger amounts. That’s true because they develop tolerance to the medication’s drug effects. When people need to overcome their tolerance, the consumption must increase. This increasing use can translate into worsening memory problems. Your Xanax memory issues will remain in effect as long as you take the medication. The only way to undo the damage is to enter a treatment program and stop using Xanax.
Treatment for Xanax Addiction
The first goal of Xanax addiction treatment is helping you safely withdraw from the medication. When you complete withdrawal, your Xanax memory issues should start to disappear. But to maintain recovery, you still have work to do in primary treatment. The core of this treatment is psychotherapy. Your particular recovery plan may include any number of therapy options.
Overcome Xanax Addiction and Memory Loss at Memphis Recovery Centers
Do you have additional questions about recovering from Xanax memory loss? Contact the addiction specialists at Memphis Recovery Centers today. We’ll explain more about what can happen to you and how you can recover. Memphis Recovery Centers also offers treatment plans for Xanax addiction. Our customizable options will help you chart your path to lasting recovery. To reach us, call 901-272-7751 or fill out our convenient online form.