Over the last few decades, addictions to prescription drugs have increased drastically. For many people, it is easier to access different kinds of prescription drugs than it is to buy street drugs. In addition, some addicts end up becoming addicted because they initially took the drug for genuine medical reasons. They unintentionally developed a dependency that blossomed into an addiction.
Unfortunately, Xanax is one of the most abused prescription drugs in the world. If you think that your child or loved one may be abusing Xanax, it is important to learn about the different types of Xanax that are available. This medication is sold in a variety of different forms, so it may not always look the same or be sold in the same concentration.
How Common Is Xanax?
While drugs have always been misused at some point in history, the drug epidemic has grown increasingly over the last few decades. Opioids and prescription pain killers have been major problems in the United States and across the world. Unfortunately, Xanax is also a problem. This prescription drug is already prescribed to a large part of the population, so there is a huge potential for its misuse. More Xanax is prescribed than similar drugs like Ativan, Klonopin, Restoril or Valium. An estimated 50 million people or more are prescribed Xanax in the United States each year. Considering its powerful high, it is unsurprising that this drug has become a problem. Every gender, race or socioeconomic group has been and can be affected by this drug.
What Is Xanax Exactly?
Before learning about the different types of Xanax, it is important to understand what the drug is intended to do. Xanax is based on a chemical known as Alprazolam. This chemical is a type of benzodiazepine. Basically, this class of chemicals works inside the mind to treat mental disorders like depression, anxiety and panic attacks. Unfortunately, it also contains side effects such as anxiety or increased clumsiness. The overall effects of Xanax depend on the dosage and amount of Xanax given. Within this article, we will cover more information about the different types of Xanax and their typical dosages.
How Is Xanax Supposed to Be Used?
Like any medication, Xanax should only be used according to the doctor’s directions. It should never be used for off-label use. You should never use someone else’s prescription or use Xanax for more than it is supposed to be used for. Your doctor or another medical professional like a pharmacist can tell you how much Xanax should be consumed each day and the time that you are supposed to use it.
You should always follow your doctor’s guidelines whenever you use Xanax. If you do not follow your doctor’s orders, it can increase the chances that you will experience side effects. It will also increase the likelihood that you will become mentally or physically addicted to the drug. While there are still risks of using any medication, you can minimize these risks by always using drugs according to your doctor’s directions. If you do have side effects, you should always talk to your doctor about them.
The first rule of using Xanax is similar to any medication: only use it according to your doctor’s directions. Your doctor knows your medical history, potential side effects of the drug and your tolerance level. You should never deviate from what your doctor says. Never take Xanax in higher or more frequent doses than what your doctor says. In addition, you should never crush the pill. While crushing Xanax is done by addicts, it is not the safe or correct way of taking the drug. Snorting Xanax is extremely dangerous, so you should only take the medication in a pill form as prescribed by a doctor.
There are some precautions to take when using Xanax. It is important that you do not take any other medications at the same time unless your doctor has told you to and has said that it is safe. Taking other medications at the same time can cause severe side effects. In addition, you should never mix Xanax with alcohol. If you drink while using Xanax, it can lower your reaction time and impair your judgment. This could cause driving or operating heavy machinery to be especially dangerous. Likewise, you should avoid any juice or food that contains grapefruit. Interestingly, grapefruit contains ingredients that can have a harmful reaction with Xanax, so it is important that you avoid any grapefruit-containing products while you are using Xanax.
Drugs That You Should Avoid
While there are many drugs that should not be taken with Xanax, we will cover the most dangerous drugs to avoid. You should never use Xanax at the same time as any narcotic, sleeping pill or muscle relaxer. If you are currently prescribed one of these medications, make sure to tell your doctor before you are given Xanax. The following list of drugs can cause harmful reactions if you use them at the same time as Xanax:
– AIDS and HIV medications
– Antifungal medications
This is decidedly not a comprehensive list. As a rule, you should list any medications that you are currently taking when you go to the doctor. This includes any herbal supplements and over-the-counter medications as well. Give your doctor this list when you are prescribed Xanax so that he or she can tell you if it will be safe to take Xanax as well.
What Are Xanax Bars?
Known as Xanax bars, this medication is actually a type of benzodiazepine that is made with the active ingredient of Alprazolam. As soon as Alprazolam is consumed, the active ingredients immediately start to work within the user’s brain. It is made specifically to target certain mental disorders, but it can cause balance problems and anxiety issues. Xanax bars and similar medications can be used to treat a wide array of medical conditions. While it is often used to treat real medical conditions, Xanax bars are frequently misused by drug abusers. It can be incredibly dangerous when abused, but is relatively safe to use under a doctor’s supervision. Since it is habit forming, Xanax bars can become addictive when not used properly.
How To Get Xanax
There is only one way to legally acquire Xanax. You have to go to your doctor and receive a prescription. These are available to people who suffer from conditions like anxiety and depression. While some people try to buy Xanax on the street, this is not ideal. You cannot be sure of the quality of the Xanax, and there is a huge potential for abuse. Even if you want to use Xanax to treat a real condition like depression, you can only do this properly with a doctor’s supervision. Deciding the dosage, avoiding side effects and preventing addiction are only possible through a doctor’s guidance and directions.
Xanax is not an over-the-counter drug. It can only be acquired using a prescription. To get a prescription, you must schedule an appointment with your doctor. At your doctor’s office, you can discuss any symptoms or medical conditions that you are currently experiencing. Since Xanax is frequently abused and sold on the street, your doctor may be hesitant to prescribe this drug at first. They may suggest alternative treatments for anxiety or depression like yoga, meditation or exercise. If you only suffer from mild depression, it may be safer and better to use a natural treatment instead.
If your doctor feels like you would benefit from using Xanax, he or she will then write you a prescription. Afterward, you can go to your local pharmacy to have your prescription filled. You should never buy Xanax from a street dealer. You can never know what you are truly purchasing from a street dealer, and you cannot tell if what you are purchasing is even the dosage it says. In addition to being dangerous, buying Xanax on the street is completely illegal. Rather than take these physical and legal risks, go to your doctor and have Xanax prescribed professionally.
The Different Types of Xanax
1. Green Xanax
While you may be used to seeing green Xanax pills, it is actually only sold by a specific pharmaceutical company. Many different companies make Xanax, and they often use different colored pills to differentiate their product. The green Xanax pills are like the yellow and white bars. These contain two milligrams of Xanax. The only real difference is the way the Xanax looks. It will have the same essential effects as the yellow or white bars.
2. Pink Xanax
This type of Xanax is available in a 0.5 milligram dose. Pink Xanax is generally prescribed for anxiety and panic disorders. To get pink Xanax, you have to have a prescription for benzodiazepine. Drug seekers unfortunately try to purchase this pill from their friends or family members because they are unable to get their doctor to write out a prescription for the drug.
3. White Xanax Bars
White Xanax bars are offered in a two milligram dose. While the pink Xanax has a 0.5 milligram dose, white Xanax bars have four time as much Xanax. This is an extremely high dosage of Xanax. If you are not using the entire dose, you can use the scores on the bars to separate each bar into four smaller segments. If you are prescribed the entire dosage of a white Xanax bar, it is important that you talk to your doctor about weaning yourself off of Xanax when your prescription ends. Otherwise, you may experience severe withdrawal symptoms if you quit cold turkey.
4. Yellow Xanax
Yellow Xanax is typically given in the form of a little yellow bar that bears the number 039 on the front. This is a generic form of Xanax. While it may be generic, it has the exact same effects as the name brand version of the drug. The yellow Xanax bars contain two milligrams of the active ingredient in Xanax. Like the white bars, they have an extremely high dosage of the drug, so it is important to wean yourself off of yellow Xanax as you end your medication cycle.
5. Blue Xanax
Blue Xanax is offered in a one milligram dose. It is typically sold in an elliptical or oval shape. These pills are often scored like the Xanax bars are so that users can break them into smaller pieces easily. Like every type of Xanax, it is important that you follow the directions in your prescription exactly and do not alter the prescribed dosage.
6. Liquid Xanax
While Xanax is often prescribed as a pill, it is also available in a liquid form. Although the liquid form is available, it is rarely prescribed. When Xanax is sold in its liquid form, it is often provided within a small bottle. A measuring container is used to measure out amounts like two milligrams of Xanax. While the liquid Xanax may appear different, it actually has the same effects of any other type of Xanax that is prescribed. In some cases, the doctor will also provide an oral syringe to help with administering this type of Xanax.
7. Orange or Peach Xanax
When you have a less severe medical or mental disorder, your doctor will often start you out with a lower dosage of Xanax. Peach Xanax is often sold in small pills with an oval shape. The pills will often be emblazoned with the number 257, but this is not always true. Peach Xanax contains 0.5 milligrams of Xanax.
Using the Scores on Xanax
Sometimes, it is cheaper to prescribe larger Xanax pills and break them into smaller pieces. The Xanax bars typically have four times the dosage of the smaller pills, so these bars are often broken into four pieces. They are scored along the sides so that users can easily break them into smaller amounts. The two-milligram bars are currently one of the highest dosages available. There is also a three-milligram tablet option available, but this type of Xanax is sold in an extended release form. If you are prescribed the entire two-milligram dose, you can use the entire bar safely. If you are only prescribed 0.5 or 1 milligram of Xanax at a time, you will have to use the scores to break the pill safely into smaller doses.
The main reason why the larger bars are prescribed is because they are often cheaper. There are generic versions available in a variety of colors, which are often even cheaper than the name brand form of the drug. As always, follow your doctor’s and pharmacist’s recommendations whenever you break the larger bar into smaller pieces.
The Side Effects of Xanax
When used according to the doctor’s directions, Xanax is generally considered to be quite safe. Even hen you use the drug correctly though, it is still possible to experience some side effects. Medications can impact different people in unique ways, and there is no way to know how the drug will affect you until you have taken it.
Before you take Xanax, it is important that you learn about the potential side effects. This will make it easier for you to spot them when they occur. If you do experience side effects, make sure to contact your doctor right away to find out if you need medical help or should discontinue the drug. Some of the most common side effects of using Xanax include:
– Decreased appetite
– Increased clumsiness
– Hearing loss
– Muscle aches or pains
– Chest pains
– Limited mobility
– Decreased motivation
– Shivering and shaking
While symptoms tend to be rare, they can happen. These symptoms are especially common in people who abuse the drug or who have been prescribed large dosages of Xanax. Because of this, it is important that you always follow your doctor’s exact instructions when using Xanax. If you experience any symptoms, contact your doctor right away.
You should always tell your doctor about any other medications that you have taken, your past medical history and any current medical conditions that you have before taking Xanax. In addition, you should be especially careful about telling your doctor if you have any of the following conditions:
– You have a history of kidney or liver disease.
– You have a history of suicidal thoughts or depression, or you are currently experiencing these problems.
– You experience epilepsy or seizures.
– You have a breathing disorder like asthma.
Xanax should never be used by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. In addition, you should not be taking this medication if you are trying to become pregnant. If this medication is used during pregnancy, it can result in birth defects or other complications during the pregnancy.
Signs of a Xanax Overdose
When used properly, it is highly unlikely that a Xanax overdose will occur. If you accidentally take more than recommended, then you could experience an overdose. Otherwise, the majority of overdoses occur in people who intentionally abusing Xanax. While every person may experience slightly different symptoms, the following symptoms are the most common to occur during a Xanax overdose:
– Heart palpitations
– Vomiting blood
– Erratic, out of control behavior
– Extreme stomach and abdominal pain
– Tightness or pain in the chest
– Uncontrollable, jerky movements
– Night terrors
– Insomnia that may last for several days or longer
– Problems controlling the bladder, talking or walking
– Changes in stool color (typically light-colored stools)
– Problems swallowing
– Excitement or talkativeness
– Difficulties breathing
– Yellowed or jaundiced skin
While these are the most common side effects from an overdose, it is also possible to experience a loss of consciousness, pain during urination and increased fatigue. If you notice any signs or symptoms associated with an overdose, it is important that you immediately seek emergency medical care. Left untreated, an overdose can result in death.
Suicidal Thoughts and Xanax
Every person may have a unique experience with Xanax. Psychiatric drugs tend to affect each person differently, so the results may not always be the same in two different people. While Xanax is frequently prescribed to treat depression, it may not always be effective. In some cases, Xanax could worsen the symptoms of depression. If you have been prescribed anti-anxiety medication, antidepressant medication or Xanax, it is important that you learn about the medications first. If you become more depressed or experience suicidal thoughts, contact your doctor right away. Any time that your symptoms worsen after taking Xanax, it is important that you immediately call your physician.
Xanax and Convulsions
You should always take the correct dosage of Xanax that is prescribed by your doctor. If you think that you may have been prescribed too large of a dose, call your doctor immediately. It is important that you do not suddenly stop taking Xanax without the supervision of a medical professional. Grand mal seizures can occur among people who have taken Xanax for an extended period of time before quitting cold turkey. If you plan on discontinuing your usage of Xanax, make sure that you talk to your doctor first. Your doctor will most likely try to taper you off the drug over the course of several months to prevent convulsions and seizures from occurring.
Obesity and Xanax
Xanax is not always ideal for obese patients. Some of the active ingredients in the drug seem to remain within the fat cells in the body, so it is possible for a toxicity to develop in overweight or obese patients. In addition, older patients may also experience problems. There body has gradually slowed down, so the half-life of Xanax may be longer than it is supposed to be. Obese patients have a similar problem because the Xanax is so widely dispersed over the adipose tissue.
Doctors will frequently perform liver function tests on obese or older patients to make sure that the drug is not causing problems. Xanax is generally started off in low dosages before the dosage is gradually increased. This is done to ensure that Xanax can be used without liver toxicity or other problems happening.
What Are the Signs of Xanax Abuse?
Unfortunately, Xanax abuse is extremely common. Because of its euphoric high, it is actually one of the most commonly abused drugs in the nation. Despite the dangers of Xanax abuse, addicts will frequently mix it with other drugs or alcohol. If you believe that someone you know has a Xanax addiction, it is important that they get help right away. Drug addicts seldom want to get help and are extremely secretive, so it is not always possible to spot a problem before it is too late. Some of the symptoms of Xanax abuse or addiction include:
– Slurred speech
– Lower energy levels
– Problems concentrating or focusing
– Increased isolation
– Problems remembering important events and people
– Lack of self-control and frequent outbursts
– No longer interested in pastimes they once enjoyed
– Problems communicating with other people
If your friend or loved one shows these signs, it is important that they seek help right away. It is possible to treat a Xanax addiction, but it is important to get help right away to prevent side effects and other repercussions.
Treatment for Xanax Abuse
If you or a loved one has been abusing Xanax, it is important that you seek medical care right away. There are many treatment programs and options available that can help. You do not ant to quit Xanax cold turkey at home. If you have an addiction to this drug, suddenly stopping use can cause severe—and potentially life-threatening—side effects. A doctor can help you decide on a dosage plan to gradually reduce your intake, or you may be recommended to go to a treatment center where your dosage can be safely lowered over time. There are treatment centers available across the country, and some of these are also covered by major insurance plans.
Over the last few years, there has been an increase in treatment programs because of the rising opioid epidemic. Even if you do not have money to cover the costs of treatment, many insurance plans and state-sponsored insurance programs will cover treatment. At the very least, you should call your doctor to work on a withdrawal timeline for decreasing your dosage.
Naloxone for Xanax Overdoses
Because of the rise in overdose cases in recent years, many governmental agencies and schools now keep Naloxone available. This prescription drug is used to block the effects of opioids and limit the chances that someone will die from an overdose. It is often stocked by fire departments, emergency responders and law enforcement officials in case they are at the scene of an overdose. Some schools are even considering the possibility of having Naloxone on hand for emergency overdoses.
Previously, Naloxone was only given through an intravenous form. Since this obviously limited where it could be administered, a new form has been made available using an auto-injection or nasal administration. New programs are also in place to find easier, better ways for administering Naloxone.