Is it Safe to Combine Xanax and Wine?
Because of how commonly Xanax is prescribed, unfortunately, people have started to believe this means that it’s entirely safe. This isn’t true, and Xanax on its own can be dangerous, and it can also be dangerous if you mix this prescription drug with other substances.
What about Xanax and wine? Is it safe to combine them?
This is something people frequently wonder about because it’s not necessarily unusual for people to think it’s fine to have Xanax and wine at the same time, but are there risks?
What you should know about Xanax and wine is detailed below.
Xanax is a prescription benzodiazepine, with the generic name alprazolam, which is given to people to treat symptoms of panic and anxiety disorders. It can help not only with general symptoms of anxiety but also panic attacks.
Xanax is intended to be used only in the short-term because it can be habit forming and people often develop a physical dependence to it. When you’re physically dependent on Xanax, and you stop it suddenly, you may go through withdrawal and Xanax withdrawal can be severe in some instances.
With Xanax, while the addiction potential exists, it’s often abused along with another substance, or several. For example, it’s not uncommon for a person to abuse both Xanax and alcohol simultaneously.
Some of the side effects of Xanax on its own can include drowsiness, confusion, lack of coordination and impaired memory and judgment. Most of the effects of Xanax are because of how the drug impacts the brain. It calms neuron activity, which relaxes the user, but it slows down overall activity of your brain and body, so it’s considered a depressant.
When you take Xanax, it specifically makes your brain release the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which then increases the amount of dopamine in your central nervous system. This is why Xanax acts as a tranquilizer, and in some people, there may be mild euphoria associated with it.
There are certain things you should avoid when taking Xanax as well, such as opioids. If you were to mix a prescription opioid pain reliever with Xanax, it could lead to over-sedation and even death.
When you drink, it alters the communication pathways of your brain, which is why it affects things like your behavior and coordination. Much like Xanax, alcohol is a depressant, and it slows down your body and brain’s vital functions. When you drink wine or other types of alcohol it also affects the concentration of GABA in your central nervous system and slows down the action of neurotransmitters. Also similar to Xanax, alcohol affects the amount of dopamine in the brain.
If you drink too much, it shows in the form of symptoms like toxicity leading to unconsciousness or in severe situations, coma or death.
Wine specifically has a relatively moderate level of alcohol content as opposed to other types of drinks. For example, wine has around 20% alcohol content, while vodka has 40 to 40% alcohol.
So, what should you know about Xanax and wine? Is it safe to combine them?
Determining whether it’s safe to combine Xanax and wine depends on a few things. First, if you’re using them both at low doses, the risks are pretty minimal because both substances can be metabolized in a normal way for most people. There is still a slight risk for interactions if you combine a small amount of Xanax and wine, but again, it’s pretty minimal. Some of the side effects of mixing Xanax and wine can include feeling extremely tired, relaxed or lethargic.
The real risk, however, comes when people combine larger amounts of Xanax and wine.
Combining Xanax and wine in larger amounts can lead to unconsciousness or even becoming comatose. Also, since drinking wine and other types of alcohol impact the effectiveness of your liver, it can make it more difficult for your liver to metabolize the Xanax. When this happens, a dangerous concentration of Xanax can build up in your body.
Ultimately you should refer questions like this to your physician or pharmacist, but it may not be. Mixing Xanax and wine may be okay and not create symptoms in small amounts, but there is the potential that it could be dangerous particularly since both substances are depressants.
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.
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