Even if you’re not very familiar with the different brand names of prescription drugs, you’ve probably heard of Xanax. When used responsibly, Xanax can offer a suite of benefits. However, when misused or abused, this medication can cause some undesirable side effects. Could liver damage be one of them?
What Is Xanax?
Xanax is the brand name for alprazolam, which is a sedative in the benzodiazepine category of prescription drugs. It is designed to relieve and treat anxiety and panic disorders. Here’s how it works:
- Xanax targets and enhances the chemical in your brain that’s responsible for relaxation.
- It depresses the central nervous system to decrease activity and ease restlessness.
This drug is known for calming users down and providing quick relief, which is why it is commonly abused. However, Xanax can be successful for individuals with diagnosed anxiety disorders who have talked to their doctor about what they are experiencing. If you or someone you know has an anxiety or panic disorder, ask your doctor how Xanax may affect you.
The Effects of Xanax
Even though Xanax has a different impact on everyone, there are some common and potentially dangerous side effects to be aware of.
Xanax, when used for a prolonged period of time, may cause or contribute to:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Dry mouth
- Trouble with balance
- Speech issues
- Decreased inhibitions
- Irritable behavior
- Weight changes
- Appetite changes
- Skin rash
- Trouble breathing
- Difficulty concentrating
- Blurred vision
- Yellow skin or eyes
- Trouble breathing
- Mania or increased energy
- Aggressive behavior
- Suicidal thoughts
While there are many possibilities regarding the issues that Xanax may create in a person’s body and mind, one question still remains: can it cause liver damage?
Can Xanax Cause Liver Damage?
Using Xanax for an extended period of time comes with a risk of potentially damaging nerve tissue in the liver. When this happens, liver inflammation may occur. This depends on the condition of someone’s liver, how long they’ve used substances for, and how frequently they use them. These risks are intensified if a person combines Xanax with alcohol. Alcohol abuse is one of the leading causes of liver inflammation and damage. When someone combines alcohol with another substance, especially one that can also cause liver problems, their personal risk will only increase.
How to Protect Your Liver
The most effective way to protect your liver is to abstain from alcohol and drugs. However, it’s sometimes necessary to take specific prescription drugs. If you have a history of alcohol abuse or liver damage in your family, talk to your doctor before using any prescriptions such as Xanax.
If you’re prescribed Xanax, only use according to prescription. Do not take more pills than the recommended highly dosage. For further liver relief and general wellness, try to drink plenty of water and eat a balanced diet daily.
If you think that you or a loved one may be experiencing negative side effects from Xanax, contact our team of substance abuse and medical professionals to see if treatment or other medication options might be best for you. Visit us here or call 866-345-2147 to learn more.