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The Dangers of Mixing Alcohol and Xanax

xanax and alcohol

When another central nervous system depressant like Xanax is used with alcohol, the risk of overdose increases. Alcohol abuse overdoses arise when parts of the brain controlling essential life-support functions become overwhelmed with the amount of alcohol in the bloodstream. Benzodiazepines like Xanax, along with alcohol, significantly slow respiration when taken alone. However, when someone takes Xanax and alcohol together, the combination of both sedative drugs can lead the brain to fail to signal to the lungs to breathe. If you have questions about treatment for alcohol and Xanax abuse, drinking and Xanax or mixing Xanax with alcohol, The Recovery Village can help. You should avoid taking Xanax too close to the time you last drank alcohol.

  1. When the two are present at once, Xanax is just easier for the body to make use of, and the concentrations of the drug within the body rise accordingly.
  2. Treatment providers are available 24/7 to answer your questions about rehab, whether it’s for you or a loved one.
  3. During addiction treatment, a person is typically past the acute withdrawal phase and can begin working more intensely on their recovery.
  4. It only takes a small amount of Xanax and alcohol to cause a deadly overdose.
  5. In 2014, a pair of government reports showed that more people were overdosing on the combination of alcohol and benzodiazepines.

It has been found that those who are enrolled in a full-time college program are more likely to abuse alcohol and drugs like Xanax than those who don’t attend college. Serious withdrawal symptoms can quickly become dangerous and life-threatening for some people. Because of this, alcohol detox usually involves close medical supervision. People who misuse or abuse Xanax (in large amounts or more often than prescribed) may experience severe side effects. If Xanax combines with other substances, prescription drugs, or medications, intense side effects can also occur.

What Happens When You Combine Alprazolam (Xanax) and Alcohol

It is important to consult a medical professional about any medications you may be taking and the risk of side effects with alcohol. When combined, boosting drug delivery to beat cancer can cause various side effects, some of which can be fatal. This is why experts recommend avoiding taking Xanax and alcohol together.

xanax and alcohol

The amount needed to suffer a fatal overdose on Xanax by itself is considerably high. It is much easier to overdose on this medication alcohol abuse articles when combined with other substances, such as alcohol. Drug overdoses are, unfortunately, a common reality in the United States.

Mixing Xanax and Alcohol

In 2015, more than 50% of the 176,000 benzodiazepine-related emergency room visits also involved other drugs or alcohol. Xanax is a central nervous system depressant that works by regulating the release of the brain’s GABA neurotransmitters. This chemical, found in many of the brain’s nerve connections, is released when one is feeling anxious or nervous. Xanax increases the amount of GABA and induces dopamine – increasing feelings of pleasure and decreasing feelings of panic, anxiety and other negative mental states.

If you’re prescribed Xanax and want to have a glass of wine with dinner one night, you’re likely wondering how long after taking Xanax can I drink? Well, the simple response to that question is to avoid alcohol altogether because it’s dangerous and can lead to an alcohol use disorder (AUD). Although some people can drink in moderation and not run the risk of developing an addiction, that doesn’t mean it can’t happen in others. Still, if you have to drink, you must wait before Xanax leaves your body before drinking. This means you would need to wait several days or even weeks after your last dose before drinking alcohol safely.

xanax and alcohol

For someone with an anxiety-related mental illness, the effects of Xanax can make it possible to function normally and avoid debilitating panic attacks. However, due to the pleasurable effects of the medication, many individuals will abuse the drug for recreational purposes rather than medical purposes. The reason the medical community agrees about Xanax and its dangers is the risk of developing a tolerance and dependence on the drug. Even when using it as prescribed, Xanax can have disastrous consequences. Even worse, when you mix the drug with other depressants like alcohol, it could be fatal.

As of 2019, the fatal drug overdose rate was 21.6 per 100,000 people. In 2020, 12,290 overdose deaths in the United States involved benzodiazepines, including Xanax. When you’re given a prescription for Xanax, you’re also provided with guidelines that tell you how much of the substance to take and when to take it. You might think it’s reasonable to combine Xanax with alcohol as long as you don’t take more Xanax than your doctor prescribes. Unfortunately, research suggests that even sticking to a prescription won’t keep you safe. Treatment providers are available 24/7 to answer your questions about rehab, whether it’s for you or a loved one.

This is a huge increase, and it demonstrates just how dangerous it can be to combine alcohol and Xanax. Alcohol can interact with almost every type of drug available, but the interactions involved can vary, how long does molly mdma stay in your system depending on the drug. As the charity Drinkaware explains, alcohol tends to exaggerate the impact of drugs in some way. You should know that thinking like this could be a sign of a substance abuse problem.

If you see someone experiencing symptoms of an alcohol and Xanax overdose, seek immediate medical help. BetterHelp can connect you to an addiction and mental health counselor. Recovery is possible, but the first step involves getting the help that you need. There’s nothing wrong with admitting that you’re struggling and need help. While taking this step is often scary, it’s the first step toward a better, happier, and more satisfying life in recovery.

Reach out to a treatment provider for free today for immediate assistance. As a person continues to take Xanax over time, the brain becomes dependent on receiving the neurotransmitter GABA from the drug and stops producing it on its own. Tolerance occurs when the body no longer responds to the drug in the same way that it initially responded, requiring more of the drug to receive the desired effect. The more the metabolization of the drug that occurs, the more that is needed to experience the desired initial effect. Alcohol and Xanax is one of the most popular drug combinations. Abuse of either substance is harmful, but if taken together the consequences can be fatal.

You may also consider calling the American Addiction Centers (AAC) addiction helpline. This 24/7 resource connects you with compassionate staff who can help you find suitable rehabs and verify your insurance benefits. During inpatient rehab, a medical team provides supervision and support for recovering addicts. Inpatient or residential rehabilitation involves a stay at a medical facility during the continuation of treatment. There are various treatments available for Xanax and alcohol addiction.

Signs and Symptoms of Xanax Addiction

Even if you consider yourself a responsible drinker and you take Xanax exactly as prescribed, you should be aware of the dangers of combining Xanax with alcohol. If you’re currently using or considering taking Xanax, talk to a healthcare provider about your alcohol use. They can answer additional questions about how Xanax and alcohol interact. Doing it intentionally to have a good time may cost you your life. Sneaking the drug into your friends drink may end up killing them. In 2014, a pair of government reports showed that more people were overdosing on the combination of alcohol and benzodiazepines.

If you or someone you know overdoses on alcohol and Xanax, you should 911 immediately. Letting people sleep it off, putting them in a cold shower or waiting to call for help will put their life at risk. Taking Xanax with alcohol increases your risk of blacking out. People who black out are conscious, but their brain stops forming memories. During black outs caused by alcohol, people usually make poor decisions because they’re drunk. Blacking out from Xanax and alcohol usually causes the same chain of events.

Alcohol is so dangerous, in terms of abuse, because it is so very common. We’re here 24/7 to help guide you or your loved on through rehab and recovery. Submit your number to receive a call today from a treatment provider.


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