Some people abuse benzodiazepines (benzos), such as Xanax, Klonopin, and Ativan to self-medicate instead of getting treatment for an underlying mental health condition. This offers temporary relief rather than a long-term solution for mental health management and therapy. People self-medicate as an immediate fix to cope with stress, anxiety, depression, or other mental health issues. There is a high risk of developing an addiction to benzodiazepines.

Benzodiazepines give an immediate, calming effect that a person will get but eventually, he or she will need to take more of it to replicate the feeling and risk overdose. The combination of tolerance and dependence makes it hard to quit without medical treatment. Just like alcohol, benzodiazepines can cause blackouts. A person does not need to be addicted to experience a blackout.

When young people are under the influence of benzodiazepines, they can engage in risky, spontaneous, and harmful behavior. It can result in stealing, causing accidents, and even rape. A blackout is anterograde amnesia, and prevents the brain from forming new memories. When a person has a blackout, the risk of it occurring again increases.

Xanax works quickly, is addictive, and very effective. In an article for the METRO (2017), Katie Baillie wrote that Lil Peep, a rapper, died from taking six Xanax laced with fentanyl. CBS NEWS reported in 2016 that Prince died with extremely high levels of fentanyl in his system – a substance commonly found in fake Xan bars.

A fake Xan bar is a tablet that looks like Xanax but is actually a deadly combination of Xanax and fentanyl, a cheap synthetic opioid that is approximately 100 times more potent than morphine. Rather than risk the high possibility of an overdose or early death, young people need to get help for underlying mental health conditions with a professional who can offer treatment.

Mental health disorders are common and treatable. Benzodiazepines are an anti-anxiety medication, and are prescribed for extremely stressful situations for people who suffer with severe anxiety. Drugs such as benzodiazepines should not be used to self-medicate and only be taken as prescribed and monitored by a medical professional.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, get help now. Cypress Lakes Lodge offers treatment for addiction in a peaceful, remote, oxygen-rich environment. The program encompasses holistic addiction therapy for the mind, body, and soul. The focus is on physical, mental, and emotional well-being by generating the balance of life-enriching treatment, wellness, and healthy, sober, sustainable relationships. Call us to get started: 409-331-2204