Xanax and Alcohol: Why You Should Never Mix Them

Why You Should Never Mix Xanax and Alcohol

Xanax and alcohol are two substances that should never be mixed together. There have been countless cases of people who overdose by combining the two, primarily because each exaggerates the effects of the other. 

Both xanax and alcohol suppress your respiratory system and central nervous system, which can easily lead to overdose, coma, and death. Xanax and alcohol are both technically legal, and they are also easy to obtain. This makes both substances readily available, and many people are under the mistaken impression that because they are legal, they are safe. This could not be further from the case.

How Xanax and Alcohol Dangerously Interact

Xanax and alcohol are both depressants. Meaning, they more or less slow everything down – your motor skills, speech, reflexes, breathing, heart rate, etc. When alcohol and xanax are put together, they exaggerate one another’s effect, and even in small doses, this can lead to a dire situation. 

One of the issues with combining xanax and alcohol is that there is no magic amount that is safe. One person may be able to have ten beers, on top of Xanax, and be fine. A second person could have half a beer after ingesting Xanax and have a terrible reaction. Also, a person’s reaction to xanax and alcohol can vary from day to day depending on your situation; so even if you have done it in the past, it doesn’t mean you will always be safe.

Alcohol and Xanax – also known as alprazolam – are broken down by the same liver enzymes. When you ingest both, your body – namely your liver – works extra hard to break down the compounds, and it takes longer for your body to get rid of the excess and detoxify itself. 

The Danger of Mixing Xanax and Alcohol

It is extremely rare for Xanax to cause a fatality by itself, but when mixing it with other substances you get into dangerous territory. Xanax and alcohol, when taken together stay in the body longer, giving it more of a chance to have a negative effect.

1. Increased Sedative Effect

When alcohol and xanax are taken together, both substances become more potent than if they were taken alone. This can lead to exaggerated sedation, make you accident-prone, and you can easily become unconscious and stop breathing. 

2. Impaired Memory and Cognitive Function

An added danger is that mixing xanax and alcohol can impact your memory. You may find yourself unsure if you already took a pill, or unclear about the number of drinks you had. As a result, you might take another pill or drink without even realizing how many you are taking simply because you can’t remember.

Furthermore, mixing xanax and alcohol can affect the brain’s ability to process information and make it difficult to concentrate or make decisions. This can be particularly problematic if you’re at work or in a situation where you need to be alert and focused.

3. Respiratory Depression

When Xanax and alcohol are combined, they can also lead to respiratory depression. This means that your breathing may become shallow or slowed, which can be dangerous or even fatal. In severe cases, respiratory depression can lead to coma or death.

4. Increased Risk of Overdose

Another risk associated with mixing Xanax and alcohol is an increased risk of overdose. Because both substances are depressants, taking them together can cause the body to slow down to dangerous levels. This can lead to respiratory failure, cardiac arrest, or other life-threatening complications.

5. Liver Damage

There are significant long-term effects of mixing alcohol and xanax, as you can cause severe issues with your liver. It starts with a fatty liver which is often reversible, and it can lead all the way up to cirrhosis of the liver, which can be fatal and requires a liver transplant.

6. Addiction and Dependence

Another significant danger is the possibility of becoming addicted to both substances. Out of all available drugs, Xanax and alcohol are two of the worst to detoxify from, and can even have dangerous consequences. Both can cause delirium tremens, a medical emergency that can cause seizures, coma, and death. It isn’t something to be played around with.

7. Risk of Polysubstance Abuse Disorder

Abusing multiple drugs is called polysubstance abuse, and it requires professional treatment to learn how to live sober. If you are combining drugs like Xanax and alcohol, it is important to get help as soon as possible before the effects become irreversible. Even though they are legal, both substances are addicting and dangerous, even more so when they are combined.

Getting Help for Xanax and Alcohol Abuse

In conclusion, the dangers of mixing Xanax and alcohol are clear, and it’s essential to seek help and support if you or someone you know is struggling with this dangerous combination. There are many resources available for those seeking addiction treatment, including Wellness Retreat Recovery in the Bay Area. 

Our substance and alcohol treatment services are designed to provide individualized support and care for those in need. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help – recovery is possible, and every step towards healing is worth taking.