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Information about the anti-anxiety drug Xanax

Xanax is a member of a group of medications called benzodiazepines. It is generally prescribed in people suffering from anxiety, although it has several more indications such as panic disorders and anxiety associated with depression.

Xanax is an excellent choice when it comes to symptoms such as restlessness, palpitations, sweating, cold clammy hands, flushing, exaggerated startle responses and insomnia.

What Should People Know about Xanax?

The first and definitely the most important thing is that this drug must never be prescribed or taken by an individual allergic to Xanax or any other benzodiazepine drug (chlordiazepoxide, clorazepate, diazepam, lorazepam and oxazepam).

Furthermore, patients who are suffering from certain respiratory conditions or have breathing difficulties, those suffering from certain illnesses (narrow angle glaucoma, kidney/liver disease) or individuals with a history of depression and suicidal tendencies are not perfect candidates for the drug.

One should never consume alcohol with Xanax since mutual effects cause severe depression of the central nervous system.

And last but not least is restriction regarding sharing the drug with other people. Namely, Xanax should never be given to other people by an individual who has been prescribed the drug, particularly not to people with a history or drug abuse and drug addiction.

Drug Interactions

Xanax must be never used with the following medications

  • Ketoconazole
  • Itraconazole
  • Nefazodone
  • Cimetidine
  • Fluvoxamine
All of them cause increasing the amount of Xanax in the blood and may trigger side effects.

Xanax Side Effects

Lower doses of Xanax may cause drowsiness and lightheadedness. However, if the drug is taken in larger doses, it may cause fatigue, speech and memory problems, constipation and alterations in appetite with subsequent changes in weight.

One of the most serious side effects of the drug is definitely addiction which predominantly affects people who take higher doses of Xanax and those who take the drug for a long period of time. This is why sudden discontinuation may induce withdrawal symptoms among which the most common ones are insomnia, headache, lightheadedness, sweating, anxiety and fatigue. Nausea and vomiting may occur as well. Severe withdrawal sign develops in a form of seizures (rarely).

Xanax, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

This drug as well as other members of benzodiazepines may cause fetal abnormalities, therefore, it is not recommended to be taken during pregnancy. Additionally, since the drug gets easily secreted in breast milk, it can enter the baby's bloodstream and cause different undesirable effects. This drives to conclusion that even breastfeeding moms should abstain from Xanax.

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