A Complete Guide to Xanax Bars
What is a Xanax bar? How is it different from other forms of Xanax? What are the different prescription uses for Xanax bars, and how are they different from using them to get high? Can you overdose from Xanax bars? And what is the safest way to detox? If you’ve ever had questions about Xanax bars, you wouldn’t be alone. Throughout the rest of this article, we plan to answer these questions and give a complete Guide to Xanax Bars because knowledge is power, and we want to give you the knowledge you need to make healthy, informed decisions for your life.
What is a Xanax Bar?
Xanax bars are rectangularly shaped tablets containing several doses of the drug. Users can choose to break them down and take them in four separate doses or take the full rectangle as one dose. Users typically start with smaller doses and work their way up as tolerance builds.
The full bar contains two milligrams of Xanax but the scoring along the pill makes it easy to break off one milligram, half a milligram, or a quarter of a milligram at a time. However, this seemingly convenient characteristic is one of the things that makes Xanax bars dangerous.
When you take a medication that alters your brain chemistry, it can be easy to forget how much you took and accidentally take more. It can also be tempting to take additional doses each time you hold a Xanax bar in your hands.
What Kind of Drug is Xanax?
Xanax is one of the brand names for alprazolam, a potent benzodiazepine. By any name, Xanax can be habit-forming and comes with a high risk of abuse and addiction. In addition to a high risk of addiction, Xanax can also cause severely painful and dangerous withdrawal symptoms.
This is one reason why we recommend monitored detox for Xanax bars rather than cold turkey quitting at home. But we’ll talk more about that later. First, let’s talk more about what Xanax is, what it looks like, what we use it for, and how it’s abused.
What is in a Xanax Bar?
We’ve mentioned that Xanax falls into the drug class of benzodiazepines, but what exactly are they? And more specifically, what is in a Xanax bar? Xanax bars contain chemicals that depress the central nervous system to promote relaxation.
The effects can be both physical and emotional. And they can also be addictive. 2 mg Xanax bars are the highest dose available legally. The FDA warns against taking more than two Xanax bars or more than 4 mg of Xanax each day.
Doing so can cause severe emotional and physical dependence, as can abusing Xanax in several other ways.
How to Identify Xanax Bars
If you’re here because you’re concerned about a friend or loved one, identifying the drug they’re abusing can help you learn about the best ways to approach the situation. Xanax bars are long and rectangular white pills.
Most are scored in three places so that they can be broken into four pieces, although the scoring often varies more than other characteristics. Both prescription and illicit Xanax bars typically have the Xanax name and the number two on them. But this is not always the case.
Because there are numerous versions of both prescription and illicit Xanax bars, their shapes, colors, markings, and dosages can vary. Each version can be dangerous.
Other Colors and Varieties of Xanax
Xanax can be white, yellow, green, blue, orange, pink, purple, or red. The color is typically indicative of the pill’s strength and its manufacturer. They can also be rectangular, round, or oval-shaped. But the description listed above of a long, white pill is typically the most common.
If you need more information about a pill you found in your home or the home of a loved one, a phone call to your pharmacy can help identify a mystery medication. Additionally, there are several online resources you can use.
Poison Control provides confidential and free pill identification 24 hours a day, every day throughout the year. And the FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research can identify drugs via email based on their appearance and markings.
It’s important to note that these resources are informational and do not provide emergency services. In the case of a severe adverse reaction, overdose, or another medical emergency, skip the information search and call 911 right away.
Prescription Uses for Xanax
Alprazolam, the medical name for Xanax, is a benzodiazepine antidepressant and anti-anxiety medication. Many years ago, it was marketed as a sleep aid, and it is still occasionally used as such for its muscle relaxing properties and ability to soothe unwanted emotional symptoms.
From 2009 to 2014, prescriptions for benzodiazepines rose by 226%. This increase is concerning for several reasons, including the prevalence of prescription drug abuse and addiction that we are still facing today.
Xanax has long been used as a treatment method for patients with anxiety, depression, panic disorders, and high levels of stress. Since these are some of the most common mental health disorders in the country, it makes sense that benzodiazepines would be some of the most frequently prescribed medications.
Unfortunately, benzos can also be highly addictive, and they are not safe for everyone. Lax attitudes toward prescriptions, long-term prescriptions, and a general lack of knowledge surrounding prescription medications all contribute to the country’s high addiction rates.
Because they can be dangerous, medical professionals recommend them for short-term use only. Many doctors will only prescribe enough Xanax to last for a few weeks at a time. This gives doctors and patients time to identify more long-term treatment options.
Can You Get High from Xanax Bars?
Yes, you can get high on Xanax bars, which is one reason why people take it when they don’t really need it. While there are several approved medical uses for Xanax bars, illicit use is increasingly common.
And using Xanax bars to get high rather than to cautiously treat an emotional disorder can be dangerous. Xanax bar abuse can cause memory impairments, other unwanted emotional and physical side effects and health impairments, and even fatal overdoses.
How Are Xanax Bars Abused?
There are many ways to abuse Xanax bars. And they aren’t all as dramatic as the movies or TV shows would lead you to believe. Abusing Xanax bars can mean something as simple as taking your medication with an alcoholic drink.
This may seem like an innocent enough practice, but it can have severe and unpredictable consequences. Mixing benzodiazepines, including Xanax, with alcohol or other central nervous system depressants, can cause our bodily functions to slow down too much.
The result may be dangerously depressed breathing, extreme sedation, a coma, or something more fatal. Some Xanax bar abuse outcomes can cause short-term health problems, but others can be long-term, life-threatening, or deadly.
Other Methods of Xanax Abuse
Mixing benzodiazepines with alcohol or other drugs is one of the most dangerous ways to abuse the medication. Other ways that users may misuse Xanax include:
- Dissolving the pills under your tongue instead of swallowing them.
- Crushing and snorting the pills or dissolving and injecting them.
- Taking higher or more frequent doses than your prescription allows.
- Lying about your symptoms or switching doctors to get a new prescription.
- Taking Xanax that wasn’t prescribed to you, whether by buying, trading, or stealing pills from a friend, relative, or another contact.
There are many ways to abuse prescription drugs, and each comes with a unique set of dangers. If you or someone you love is abusing Xanax bars, don’t wait for the problem to get worse to seek help. The best time to make a change is now. And we can help.
Street Names for Xanax Bars
Xanax isn’t always called Xanax or alprazolam. Cultural references in song lyrics and movies have popularized additional street names for Xanax bars. Some of the most common are xannies (pronounced zannies), xanbars, handlebars, totem poles, blue footballs, and benzos.
These nicknames make light of the dangers of Xanax and other benzodiazepines, which may also help explain why teen prescription drug abuse and related fatalities are on the rise. From 2000 to 2015, the rate of pediatric benzodiazepine exposure increased by 54%.
In this time, the severity of related medical outcomes also increased. Almost half of the 2015 exposures involved intentional misuse, abuse, or attempted suicide. Individuals under the age of 25 are the most likely to abuse benzodiazepines.
But it does happen across all ages, genders, and backgrounds.
Street Value of Xanax Bars
Many people also wonder about the street value of Xanax bars. The street value of Xanax bars can vary depending on the location, manufacturer, dosage, and other factors. Xanax is one of the most common illicitly sold prescription medications.
While the average price on the street for a Xanax bar is $5, the range moves from $1 to $15 per pill. Whatever the financial cost, it is not worth the physical or emotional risks. And Xanax sold on the street can come with a lot of additional risks.
Risks of Counterfeit Xanax
While there are plenty of dangers related to misusing prescription Xanax, the counterfeit or illicit Xanax that users buy on the street comes with additional risks. One of the biggest is the potential for it to be laced with other drugs without the user’s knowledge.
Some counterfeit drug producers and sellers lace their Xanax tablets with fentanyl, a dangerous opioid that can cause life-threatening breathing problems. This practice has resulted in numerous overdose hospitalizations and deaths.
Fentanyl-laced drugs make look, smell, and even taste the same as a prescription Xanax bar. Without any way to differentiate the two, sellers can cut their costs, and users can end up unknowingly paying the price, often with their health or their life.
Can You Overdose from Xanax Bars?
We mentioned overdose earlier, but because prescription medication overdoses have become so common, we wanted to talk about some of the activities that may make an overdose more likely. One common and dangerous example is mixing Xanax with other drugs.
Mixing Xanax with a stimulant like Adderall or cocaine increases the risk of overdose. Taking higher or more frequent doses than you are supposed to can also cause an overdose. Some of the signs of a Xanax overdose include agitation or anxiety, confusion, dizziness, loss of coordination, and extreme sedation.
These symptoms are the result of a severely depressed central nervous system. They should be addressed with immediate medical attention.
Tolerance and Prescription Drug Usage
Taking Xanax only for a genuine medical need and according to the instructions of the prescription you were given can help mitigate its risks. Side effects, including tolerance and addiction, can still occur.
But the risk of side effects and addiction is significantly higher when it’s abused. Before we sign on to take any prescription medications, we should be diligent and talk to a doctor about tolerance and prescription drug usage.
We should also stray away from prescription drugs sold on the streets. But these two tasks are not always easy feats. Once we start taking Xanax, whether prescription or illicit, it can be hard to stop. When that happens, we can help.
And we can also help with identifying the common symptoms of Xanax bar dependence. Because many people obtain Xanax through prescription, the line between genuine, appropriate medical use and misuse or abuse can get blurry.
Symptoms of Xanax Bar Dependence
By now, you know that Xanax changes our brain chemistry. This can make it difficult for us to see things clearly. If you believe that you or someone you love has a problem with Xanax, there are many signs you can look for.
One of the first signs of Xanax bar dependence or addiction is the appearance of withdrawal symptoms when you try to stop taking it. Some of the most common Xanax withdrawal symptoms include:
- Hand tremors
- Drug cravings
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Trouble sleeping
- Increased sweating
- Nausea and dry retching
- Muscle pain or stiffness
Those accustomed to high dosages of the drug may experience seizures, psychotic reactions, and other severe symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms can vary depending on your dosage, frequency of use, and other individual factors.
Unpredictable, painful, and even dangerous withdrawal symptoms are some of the dangers of a cold turkey benzo detox. Our medical detox can help reduce or eliminate these symptoms for a smooth transition between withdrawal and addiction treatments.
Behavioral Signs of Xanax Addiction
In addition to drug cravings and other withdrawal symptoms, there are many behavioral signs that someone may be addicted to Xanax. If you’re concerned about a loved one, pay attention to their patterns. Do they change doctors regularly?
Are there prescription pills stored in baggies in their home instead of in prescription bottles? Do they become defensive, angry, or secretive when asked about their Xanax use? All of these behaviors can be signs of trouble.
Someone who is addicted to Xanax may also shift their priorities to spend more time taking Xanax, have financial or relationship problems related to their drug use, or suddenly start hiding things or skipping out on social obligations.
Sometimes, we see that our loved ones are struggling before they do. But it isn’t always easy to know how or when to help. If you believe that it may be time to get your loved one some help, call us today for more information.
Medically Supervised Detox for Xanax Bars
A medically-supervised Xanax detox is generally considered the safest method. Benzodiazepine withdrawal symptoms can be particularly severe. Detoxing in the safety and comfort of an accredited facility under the care of a dedicated medical team can minimize the risks.
During medical detox, we also professionally and cautiously administer approved medications to minimize the withdrawal symptoms. This can help reduce everything from the type of withdrawal symptoms to their length and severity.
The typical progression for Xanax addiction includes medical detox, residential treatment, and intensive outpatient therapy.
The Benefits of Residential Care After Medical Detox
Residential treatment offers the highest level of care, which is appropriate for addictions to powerful drugs like benzodiazepines. These types of addictions often cause severe withdrawal symptoms and can cause additional complications.
During an inpatient stay, our clients benefit from 24-hour access to medical care, professional guidance, and recovery support. Each of our programs is customized to meet the unique needs of the person participating in it.
And each one features proven treatment methods, creative therapies, outings, and activities, and more. After a residential treatment program, most clients transition into an outpatient treatment plan.
This allows you to adjust to life back at home while you continue visiting our facility each week for support group meetings, counseling sessions, and other treatments.
Choosing The Discovery House
When you choose The Discovery House, you choose customized care plans, holistic treatments, and dedicated care providers. Our goal is to address each of our client’s mental, physical, and spiritual recovery needs.
This is a recipe for long-term success. Call us today at 818-452-1676 for more information. Our calls are always confidential, and our call line is always open.