Everyone feels anxious from time-to-time. For most of us, the anxiety ebbs and flows around certain events — a job interview, a performance, a speech. But sometimes the anxiety stays around, even when life is calm. And in those instances, you might seek a prescription for anti-anxiety medication such as Xanax. Take these medications with care, and more anything, make sure you do not mix Xanax and alcohol. It’s a dangerous combination that could land you in our alcohol addiction treatment center in Houston or similar facility like it in your community.
Xanax and alcohol are both depressants that act on your central nervous system. For reasons researchers don’t quite understand yet, the two substances together intensify their personal effects. So mixing alcohol and Xanax could have dire consequences.
Having a good understanding of why the two substances don’t mix goes a long way to keeping you safe from avoidable side effects.
Medications for Anxiety
The use of anti-anxiety medications to quell anxiety disorders such as panic attacks represents a problem for doctors. Xanax and drugs like it, such as Valium and Ativan, are very useful in providing relaxing effects. But they also can be habit-forming. And the process of breaking an addiction to Xanax can be long and painful.
Xanax, Valium, and Ativan fall into a category of sedatives known as benzodiazepines. These are on the government’s list of controlled substances, meaning they are available only through a doctor’s prescription. Xanax is also used to treat seizures as well as, ironically, withdrawal from alcohol.
Of course, like any drug, Xanax may be acquired through illicit means. And sometimes, people seeking relief might make the unfortunate decision to take Xanax while drinking. Consuming both Xanax and alcohol can set you on a dangerous path that may require you to consider drug and alcohol treatment.
The Dangers of Xanax and Alcohol
Xanax and alcohol are both considered depressants, meaning they lower the level of activity of the central nervous system. This could lead to dangerous lowered breathing rates, extreme drowsiness, fatigue, and problems with coordination.
Together, Xanax and alcohol can cause dramatic personality change. Xanax has been known to spark periods of anger or even rage, while alcohol lowers inhibitions. It’s not hard to see how that might lead to trouble.
You can become addicted to both Xanax and alcohol. This raises the possibility that you might have to visit an alcohol detox center in Houston or a similar set of services closer to your home. Detox centers help set the stage for recovery. If you or someone you love is using both Xanax and alcohol, consider seeking a consultation.
The good news is that drugs like Xanax or Valium aren’t the only answer for anxiety disorders. Doctors frequently prescribe anti-depressants, such as Prozac or Paxil, which generally are not known to be habit-forming. But you don’t have to take drugs at all. Medication-free alternatives include:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy or other types of counseling
- Mindfulness meditation
- Deep-breathing exercises
- Physical fitness regimens
- Foods with Omega-3 or supplements such as Valerian
The best outcomes may involve a combination of these methods, along with medication. But using Xanax and alcohol is not a great solution.
No one sets out to become ritual users of Xanax and alcohol. But sometimes it happens, and that’s where treatment centers come into play. You may find treatment centers offering sex-specific treatment, such as our women’s rehab program in Florida. But other facilities closer to home or with broader mandates can be helpful too. The important thing to remember is you don’t have to struggle and suffer. Seek the help you deserve.