Throughout the United States, there are no mental health disorders more common than anxiety disorders. Approximately 40 percent of Americans have an anxiety disorder such as generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, or panic disorder. Benzodiazepines are prescribed at more than 66 million doctor’s appointments each year, making this class of drugs some of the most prescribed across the board. Benzodiazepines work to help activate neurotransmitters in the brain that can help produce feelings of calm and relaxation. While benzodiazepines like Xanax have been able to help millions of people with their anxiety disorders, they also remain some of the most highly abused substances. Abusing a benzodiazepine like Xanax can produce a number of negative effects, including physical ones. One might wonder, “Is Xanax bad for your liver?”
What is Xanax?
Xanax, as previously mentioned, is a benzodiazepine medication used to help treat specific anxiety disorders such as panic disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. It is a medication that is typically only used for the short-term, as it can be habit-forming and there are other medications more effective at treating these conditions long-term. When used as prescribed, Xanax can help those with anxiety disorders by helping even out the GABA activity in the brain.
GABA, which is short for gammoaminobuytric-acid, is a neurotransmitter that helps to block activity in the nervous system, such as that triggered by anxiety. Low GABA activity and anxiety disorders are closely linked, which is why benzodiazepines like Xanax work so effectively. They help to increase the activity of GABA in the brain so that an individual can experience a calming effect rather than a stressful one. Again, when taken exactly as prescribed by a professional healthcare provider, people do not have to be too concerned with asking the question, “is Xanax bad for your liver?”, as minimal, short-term use is deemed safe for the liver. Those who abuse benzodiazepines, however, unfortunately, do not share in the same low risk. Instead, their risk for suffering problems associated with their liver increases significantly.
Effects of Xanax Abuse
People who take Xanax as prescribed do not exhibit symptoms of being under the influence when taking benzodiazepines. Those who do abuse benzodiazepines like Xanax can and will experience symptoms of being under the influence, some of which include the following:
- Slurred speech
- Detachment from surroundings
- Blurred vision
- Dozing off
When Xanax is being abused, there is typically more going on than what meets the eye. So while a person may appear under the influence frequently, they may also be experiencing a slew of other issues throughout all areas of their lives. Consider the following:
- Strained interpersonal relationships due to regularly abusing Xanax
- Financial problems as a result of buying increasingly more Xanax
- Neglect of responsibilities at home, school, or work
- Changes in hygiene
- Changes in sleep patterns (sleeping too much/too little, sleeping at odd times of the day, etc.)
- Changes in diet
- Attempting to cut down or stop using Xanax but being unable to do so
- Continuing to use Xanax even if it has caused negative consequences
- Legal challenges as a result of driving under the influence, improper acquisition of a prescription medication, or other charges related to one’s Xanax abuse
When Xanax abuse becomes regular and an individual has shifted the majority of their focus on their use, this serves as a signal that a much bigger problem is going on. And, while the use continues and problems start to grow in severity, what’s happening on the inside might not be as noticeable. Wondering if Xanax bad for your liver is absolutely valid, as doing so puts attention on a vital organ that is likely being damaged by continued Xanax abuse.
Is Xanax Bad For Your Liver?
The liver is one of the body’s most important organs, as it serves as a filter for blood, food, drink, and anything else that may get put into the body. It is also responsible for bile production and excretion, metabolism of fats, carbs, and proteins, and activates enzymes. Without the liver, a person cannot survive.
So, is Xanax bad for your liver? The short answer to that question is yes, it can be. There are several factors that go into whether or not Xanax will harm your liver, such as how much Xanax you consume at a time, how often you use Xanax, and if you are abusing other substances at the same time. If you are regularly abusing Xanax, the chances that you will cause harm to your liver are greater than those of someone who is not abusing this medication. The more exposure the liver has to Xanax, the more damage can be done.
Specifically, Xanax can cause damage to the nerve tissue in the liver. This damage can lead to liver inflammation, which can cause jaundice, diarrhea, abdominal swelling, joint pain, and fever. A liver that is inflamed but left untreated can quickly begin to deteriorate and trigger the onset of end-stage liver disease and liver failure. Both conditions are fatal.
The best thing that you can do if you are abusing Xanax or any other substance is to reach out and ask for help. By doing so, you not only get the opportunity to stop or prevent these effects from happening, but you also get a second chance at a happy life.
Xanax Addiction Treatment in Nashville
Living with a Xanax addiction is not living at all. If you are struggling with stopping your Xanax abuse, we can help.
Contact us right now by calling to speak with one of our compassionate, experienced team members who can help you get started on the road to recovery. To learn more about us and our programming, please visit our website.
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