Home » Addiction Blog » Risks Of Mixing Xanax With Alcohol

Risks Of Mixing Xanax With Alcohol

Xanax, a prescription medication used for treating anxiety and panic disorders, is widely prescribed to help people manage their symptoms. While it can be effective when taken as directed by a healthcare professional, combining Xanax with alcohol can have dangerous and potentially life-threatening consequences. There are risks associated with mixing Xanax with alcohol, and this combination should be avoided at all costs.

What Does Xanax Do?

When taken as prescribed, Xanax can produce a calming and sedating effect. Many people describe the feeling of Xanax as reducing their anxiety and promoting relaxation, leading to a sense of tranquility. It can help to alleviate symptoms such as racing thoughts, restlessness, and physical tension commonly associated with anxiety disorders. Unfortunately, it is these effects that cause some people to misuse Xanax. 

What Does Alcohol Do?

Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant that can cause a range of effects on the body and mind. It initially creates a feeling of euphoria and relaxation, lowering inhibitions and creating a sense of sociability. However, as alcohol consumption increases, its effects become more pronounced and potentially dangerous. 

At higher levels, alcohol impairs judgment, coordination, and motor skills, leading to poor decision-making abilities. It can also affect memory recall and perception. Additionally, excessive alcohol consumption can lead to drowsiness, confusion, mood swings, aggression, and even blackouts in severe cases. 

Why Do People Mix Xanax and Alcohol?

People mix Xanax and alcohol for various reasons, although it is important to note that doing so is highly risky and strongly discouraged. Some individuals wrongly believe that combining the two substances will enhance the effects of relaxation or sedation. They may seek heightened feelings of relief from anxiety or an intensified sense of calmness.

Others might unknowingly mix Xanax and alcohol by consuming them separately without fully understanding the potential dangers. This can occur when individuals are not adequately informed about the risks, are unaware of interactions between medications they are taking, or underestimate the impact these combinations can have on their physical and mental health.

In other cases, people misuse Xanax recreationally while also consuming alcohol as a form of self-medication or experimentation. However, such behavior significantly increases the likelihood and severity of adverse effects, including dependence and addiction.

What Are the Effects of Mixing Xanax with Alcohol?

Mixing Xanax with alcohol can intensify their individual depressant effects, leading to increased sedation, impaired coordination, and slowed reflexes. It can result in extreme drowsiness, confusion, and a loss of motor control.

One common effect experienced when mixing Xanax with alcohol is an exaggeration of the sedating properties of both substances. This may lead to profound relaxation to the point of feeling excessively sleepy or even passing out.

Moreover, this combination affects cognitive function, memory recall, and decision-making abilities, which are already impaired by each substance individually. It heightens the risk of blackouts where individuals have no recollection or memory of events that occurred while under the influence.

Combining Xanax with alcohol also poses dangers to respiratory function as both substances slow down breathing. In extreme cases or when consumed in large quantities, it can result in shallow breathing or even respiratory failure — a life-threatening situation requiring immediate medical intervention.

What Are the Long-Term Effects on the Body?

The long-term effects of mixing Xanax with alcohol can have serious implications for the body. When these substances are regularly combined, individuals develop a tolerance to both Xanax and alcohol. Therefore, higher doses are needed to achieve the desired effects, leading to an increased risk of overdose.

Prolonged use of this combination also strains vital organs such as the liver and kidneys. The liver metabolizes both Xanax and alcohol, so excessive and concurrent usage can overwhelm its capacity to process toxins efficiently. Over time, this can contribute to liver damage or disease.

Furthermore, chronic misuse of Xanax alongside alcohol can lead to other health problems, including gastrointestinal issues like ulcers or gastritis, high blood pressure, irregular heart rhythms, respiratory disorders, and weakened immune function making one more susceptible to infections.

Additionally, psychological dependence may develop when these substances are mixed over an extended period. Physical and psychological reliance on Xanax and alcohol make it extremely difficult for someone to quit without experiencing withdrawal symptoms which can be severe or even life-threatening.

Treatment for Xanax and Alcohol Addictions

Treatment for Xanax and alcohol addictions typically involves a comprehensive approach, taking into account the individual’s specific needs and circumstances to create a customized treatment plan using the following:

  • Medical Detox: As Xanax and alcohol withdrawal can be dangerous and potentially life-threatening, it is recommended to undergo medically supervised detox to manage withdrawal symptoms while ensuring safety.
  • Inpatient or Outpatient Rehabilitation Programs: Following detox, individuals may enter an inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation program tailored to their level of need. 
  • Individual Therapies: Therapy plays a crucial role in addressing the psychological aspects of addiction. 
  • Addressing Underlying Issues: Effective treatment addresses underlying issues contributing to substance abuse and co-occurring mental health disorders.
  • Support Groups: Participation in support groups benefits long-term recovery by providing peer support, accountability, and guidance from others who have faced similar challenges.
  • Continued Support and Aftercare: Recovery from Xanax and alcohol addiction is an ongoing process that requires continued support. 

Take the First Steps to Recovery in Columbus, OH

Recovery from Xanax and alcohol addiction is possible when you are ready to commit to positive change with help from Ohio Addiction Recovery Center in Columbus, OH. We provide a caring, compassionate, and supportive environment with tailored treatment programs to fit your needs.

Contact us today to get started on your new substance-free life. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to content