Pharmacist Questions Xanax

Is Xanax addictive?

I'm 40, and my doctor gave me Xanax to help me sleep, mainly because my lack of sleep is due to anxiety. But isn't Xanax addictive? Should I suggest other options?

5 Answers

Yes, Xanax has the potential for dependence. I would definitely suggest discussing other options with your Doctor. There are antidepressants that treat anxiety, which in turn can help you sleep.
Yes, Xanax does have addictive properties
You are correct. Xanax is not the first choice drug to use for sleep or anxiety, unless it is for a very limited time frame or for only occasional use. Sometimes I will prescribe a "few" xanax for people who have a lot of anxiety, so that they can have a sense of control and know that if they "really" have a need, they can use one. I will also use this technique for short term high stress events, such as a death in the family. The other disorder for which benzos are appropriate is panic disorder. Panic disorder is not the same thing as anxiety disorder. So drugs like xanax are fine in limited amounts for limited times. They are too addictive to use for long term anxiety or insomnia.

For anxiety, it is often appropriate to use a combination of "antidepressant" medications and cognitive behavioral therapy. (sertraline or duloxetine are commonly used) There are a number of phone apps that help with anxiety, such as B2R (developed for the VA) and Pacifica. Combining appropriate treatments for anxiety with good sleep hygiene would be my initial approach to treating the insomnia caused by anxiety. Best of luck
Definitely Xanax is not a good idea for insomnia. My advice to see a sleep specialist to help you with your insomnia.
Yes. If possible try to avoid. Try melatonin, meditation, and other alternative measures.