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I've recently taken my elderly mother of 80 years old in to live with me and my husband and children because she was experiencing severe anxiety and depression. I think she is also addicted to the drug Xanax. She has seen a Psychiatrist recently who gave her a different med, one that is more like a treatment for the anxiety, but takes a bit longer for the anxiety symptoms to go away. My mom prefers the instant gratification that she gets from taking the Xanax but the more she takes it the more I hear it is habit forming and the more anxcious people feel. It's a vicious cycle... She gets very angry if she can't have her Xanax and she's really a different person. Has anyone ever had to deal with this type of situation? Any guidence or advice would be greatly appreciated. I'm desperate to have my mom back.

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Keep, it's generally ok to be on both! I'm assuming that the new drug is an antidepressant like Prozac or cymbalta. something like Xanax or klonopin is fine to take in combination with the antidepressant, but the more long acting drug will keep her from needing more of the shorter acting drug.

So, do you talk to the doctor during these appointments? Just because you'll get better, more accurate information if you do.

Yes, it's possible to become dependent upon drugs like xanax, which is a class of drugs called benzodiazapams. Lots of doctors don't like to prescribe them to seniors, but by the same token, then need to be tapered off. Glad that you are seeing the doctor again this week.
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Hi Sunnygirl1, I completely agree with you. We have another dr appointment on Thursday and I plan to ask that question, if she feels good on Xanx and it's not making matters worse then why not allow her to take it? I just want her to feel good and take part in family activities, like my kids birthday parties etc... Thank you for you comments and thoughts on this. :)
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Her doctor should monitor her weaning of that med. I would expect the long acting anti-anxiety med to really kick in and help her. When my cousin went on Cymbalta, she really showed a marked improvement in about 5 days, though, I've heard it takes weeks to get the full effect.

I bet when your mom starts feeling better, she will have an easier time weaning. But, even if she doesn't want to wean, what is the problem with her taking the Xanax? As long as she is not having balance or falling problems, what's the downside? I could understand if she had children to care for, job to work, car to drive, but as a senior who is trying to be at peace in her twilight years, I don't know that it would bother me as long as her doctor says it's okay on a take as needed basis. Why not let her have the Xanax. I would support anything that makes her happy as long as it's not harming her and that she doesn't overdose.
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Is the doctor who saw her aware of how much she is/was REALLY taking? The doc should be tapering her off. I would give him a call and discuss this.
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