Generic Name: Alprazolam
Brand Name: Xanax, Xanax XR
What is Xanax?
Xanax is helpful in the management of panic and anxiety disorders. It belongs to benzodiazepine medications that act on the brain and central nervous system to produce calmness and relaxation.
Xanax enhances the effects of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) neurotransmitters that are responsible for the communication between the brain cells. They send chemical messages through the brain and nerves. Xanax is available only on a doctor’s prescription.
Xanax comes in the following dosage formulations:
- Liquid solution
- Disintegrating oral tablets
- Extended-release tablets
The psychiatric treatment had a rise in the 1960s, and it became more mainstream to receive this treatment. Researchers looked for ways to help people manage insomnia, anxiety, and panic attacks. Dr. Leo Sternbach created Librium, the first benzodiazepine, in the year 1956, intending to develop a less addictive and potentially safer alternative to conventional tranquilizers as barbiturates.
Alprazolam, the active ingredient of Xanax, got patented in 1976, having its patent filed in 1969. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) approved Xanax on October 16, 1981. The first medication for treating panic disorder approved by the FDA was Xanax. Within 2 years of its introduction in the market, Xanax became a pivotal drug in the United States.
Uses of Xanax
Xanax is helpful in the management of anxiety disorders. The Food and Drugs Administration approves the use of Xanax for the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder, short-term symptoms of anxiety, and panic disorder.
Patients with depression due to anxiety or insomnia associated with anxiety are also responsive to the treatment of Xanax. Take Xanax only as directed by a doctor. Avoid taking higher, more frequent, or prolonged doses of the medication. Xanax comes with a medication guide along with it. Follow all the given instructions. Contact your doctor to solve any queries after reading the manual.
While using extended-release tablets, swallow it entirely with a glass full of water. Never try to chew, break, or crush it.
While using oral disintegrating pills, dry your hands thoroughly before handling them. Take out the tablets from the bottle only when you are ready to take it. Take out and immediately place it on your tongue. It quickly melts on the tongue, swallows it with saliva.
While using an oral liquid solution, always measure your dose with a marked cup, spoon, or oral syringe.
The amount of Xanax, its doses, and the frequency of dosing, all depend upon the medical condition of the patient. The common Xanax dosages are:
- Anxiety Disorder:
- Daily dose: start with 0.25 mg to 0.5 mg three times a day
- Maximum dose: 4 mg per day
- Dose titration: 0.5 mg every 3-4 days
- Geriatric patients:
- Daily dose: 0.25 mg two to three times a day
- Maximum dose: 2-4 mg a day
- Dose titration: titrate very cautiously only if needed and well-tolerated
- Pediatric patients: Xanax is not for the treatment of anxiety disorder in children below 18 years of age
- Panic Disorder:
- Daily dose: 0.5 mg three times a day
- Maximum dose: 10 mg per day
- Dose titration: 1 mg every 3-4 days
- Geriatric patients
- Daily dose: 0.25 mg two to three times per day
- Maximum dose: 4-6 mg per day
- Dose titration: increase the dose very carefully only if needed and well-tolerated
- Pediatric patients: Xanax is not for the treatment of panic disorder in children below 18 years of age
A doctor should weigh the potential risks of Xanax against its benefits before prescribing it to a patient. Consider the following things before you buy Xanax online and start its treatment:
Tell a doctor if you have an allergy or reactions to Xanax or any benzodiazepine. Also, tell your doctor about other allergies you have, such as food allergies and dye or preservative allergies. Read the medication label for a complete list of its active and inactive ingredients.
Xanax interacts with several drugs to produce unwanted effects. Drug interactions could be mild or severe. Some medicines having critical interactions with Xanax are:
Mild Xanax interactions are avoidable by adjusting the doses and frequency of both drugs. Certain medications that have patient interaction with Xanax include:
- Sodium oxybate
The clinical researchers have no proper reports of studies of Xanax on the pediatric population. However, the FDA has no established efficacy and safety of Xanax for children.
Studies do not show problems related to geriatric populations for the usefulness of Xanax. However, geriatric patients may have an increased risk of side effects such as kidney, liver, or lung diseases, confusion, dizziness, drowsiness, or unsteadiness.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Researches reveal that pregnant women taking Xanax have a risk to their fetus. Xanax also gets into human milk and reaches the nursing baby. This can harm the infant, causing withdrawal symptoms such as respiratory depression, unusual sleepiness, and others. It is, therefore, not recommendable for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers to take Xanax. However, a doctor may prescribe the medication to these women if its benefits outweigh the potential risks.
Xanax shows contraindications in some conditions. Several medical and mental health conditions may adversely affect Xanax use, including:
- Kidney diseases
- Acute narrow-angle glaucoma
- History of seizures
- Liver diseases
- History of mental health issues
- History of alcohol abuse
- Drug dependence or abuse
- Depression or a family history of depression
- Respiratory depression including lung or breathing problems
The most frequently occurring Xanax side effects include:
- Loss of appetite
- Slurred speech
- Loss of concentration
Some less common side effects of Xanax include:
- Stomach pain
- Body pain
- Behavior changes
- Urination problems
- Dryness of mouth
- Feelings of discomfort
- Joint pain
- Runny nose
- Yellow eyes or skin