Teen Xanax Abuse Is Surging
Last Updated: Wednesday July 28, 2021
(Pew Trusts, August 24) Though national data doesn’t reflect a surge currently, addiction specialists say they are expecting to see a rise in Xanax use among teens, Pew Trusts reports.
Xanax is prescribed by doctors to relieve anxiety, muscle spasms and reduce seizures. It’s in the benzodiazepines (also known as benzos) category that also includes prescription medication such as Valium®, Restoril®, Ativan®, and Klonopin®.
“Adolescent benzo use has skyrocketed and more kids are being admitted to hospitals for benzo withdrawal because the seizures are so dangerous,” Sharon Levy, director of adolescent addiction treatment at Boston’s Children’s Hospital said.
What would be reasons around an increase? Levy says with more pills being prescribed to adults, teens are gaining more access. In addition, many teens view the pills as a “safer” alternative to opioids.
“When I ask them if they’re using opioids, they say, ‘No. I wouldn’t touch the stuff.’” Read more.