There is an unfortunate misconception that a lot of people have about over-the-counter drugs, which is that they’re inherently safe. While many over-the-counter drugs are considered generally safe, you should always be aware of their risks and side effects, just as you would be with a prescription drug.

You should also let your physician know about any over-the-counter drugs you’re taking if you’re being prescribed a new medicine because there can be a risk of interactions and adverse side effects.

One of the most commonly prescribed drugs in the U.S. is Xanax, and one of the most widely used over-the-counter drugs is Tylenol, so can you mix Xanax and Tylenol? Are there interactions to be aware of with Xanax and Tylenol?

The following provides an overview of both Xanax and Tylenol on their own, as well as what you should know about taking them together.

Xanax and Tylenol | Can You Mix Xanax and Tylenol?
As was touched on above, Xanax is a commonly prescribed drug used to treat anxiety and panic disorders. It’s classified as a benzodiazepine, and it slows the activity of the brain and central nervous system, which is what makes people feel calmer and more relaxed when they take it.

Along with calming brain activity, people who take Xanax may also feel drowsy, they may have slurred speech, or they may lack coordination. Xanax, particularly when taken in high doses, can make someone appear as if they’re intoxicated from alcohol.

Xanax is intended only to be used in the short-term because it can become habit-forming and you can develop a physical dependence on it. While Xanax is a prescription drug, it’s also often used recreationally on its own, or with other drugs. This can be dangerous and can lead to an overdose or death occurring.

Tylenol is a brand name of the generic drug acetaminophen, and it’s available in various forms over-the-counter, but it’s also available in different prescription variations as well. Tylenol relieves pain and fever and conditions it can be used to treat are wide-reaching, such as headache, toothaches, and arthritis.

Tylenol comes on its own, and it’s also combined with many other medicines, such as Sudafed and Nyquil.

It is also combined with prescription narcotic pain medications like Tylenol with Codeine #3 and hydrocodone. In these cases, the Tylenol is mixed with an opioid to treat more severe pain.

Acetaminophen on its own is classified as a non-opioid analgesic, and it blocks enzymes that produce pain and inflammation. Unlike NSAIDs such as aspirin, acetaminophen doesn’t reduce inflammation or swelling.

While it’s considered mostly safe on its own, acetaminophen can be damaging to the liver, and people should carefully monitor how much they take in a day. Taking too much acetaminophen can lead to acute liver toxicity, liver failure or death.

So what about Xanax and Tylenol? Can you mix Xanax and Tylenol?

People frequently wonder “can you mix Xanax and Tylenol,” because both are commonly used substances.

If you take Xanax and Tylenol together, it can make the symptoms of the Xanax more pronounced. For example, you may experience heightened drowsiness or dizziness. There are no real current scientific studies showing that the combination of Xanax and regular Tylenol would be harmful, but you should always speak to your doctor.

However, if you were to mix Xanax and Tylenol or acetaminophen combined with another substance, such as an opioid, then it can be very dangerous. Doing this can increase your risk of experiencing respiratory depression and having an overdose.

If you mix Xanax and Tylenol in the form of something like Nyquil or another medication that could be a sedative, this can also be risky as well, because it can cause over-sedation.

The best thing you can do if you’re wondering can you mix Xanax and Tylenol is speak with your doctor or pharmacist.

To sum it all up, can you mix Xanax and Tylenol? It’s probably okay to mix Xanax and Tylenol if you’re using the Tylenol in its classic formulation, with just the acetaminophen. Ask your physician or pharmacist, however, and always be aware of the total amount of acetaminophen you take in a day. The combination of Xanax and Tylenol isn’t known to have any dangerous interactions currently, as long as you’re sure that you’re just taking Tylenol and it doesn’t have another component that it’s mixed with.

You shouldn’t mix Xanax and Tylenol combined with other substances like prescription opioids or medications with sleep aids because this can be dangerous or deadly.

Again, it can’t be reinforced enough how important it is to consult a professional before taking Xanax and Tylenol or mixing any kinds of medications. They are ultimately the ones you should listen to first and foremost to avoid putting yourself in a dangerous situation.

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Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.