Can You Use Weed If You Take Xanax?

xanax tablets and weed

Table of contents

  1. What Is Xanax?
  2. Uses and How It Works
  3. Potential Benefits and Risks of Mixing Cannabis and Xanax
  4. What to Do If You Need to Use Both Xanax and Marijuana
  5. The Bottom Line

Using weed and Xanax may produce some unwanted side effects. However, most of these potential side effects are minor and temporary. With that said, it’s best to avoid mixing weed and Xanax without first getting approval from your healthcare provider.

Learn more about the possible drug interactions between cannabis and Xanax and how to use the medicines safely.

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What Is Xanax?

Xanax (clinical name Alprazolam) is a prescription medication used to treat anxiety and panic disorders.

This doctor-prescribed drug has a calming effect on the central nervous system that controls your brain and nerves. It belongs to a class of central nervous system depressants known as benzodiazepines (colloquially known as “benzos”).

This anxiety medication, as well as other benzodiazepines, carries a risk of addiction. To reduce the risk of drug abuse, physicians generally prescribe the lowest possible dose to their patients.

A typical starting dose of Xanax is between 0.25 and 0.5 milligrams, administered up to three times per day. Higher doses of Xanax (two milligrams or more) may lead to drug tolerance.

Uses and How It Works

Xanax has sedative effects on the brain and body. Some people use Xanax at bedtime to help them sleep better, although the drug is not indicated as a sleep aid. The two primary approved uses of Xanax are:

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD).
  • Panic disorder (including for people with agoraphobia, an irrational fear of crowded places or leaving one’s home).

If your doctor has given you a prescription for Xanax, you should use it exactly as directed. Furthermore, do not combine Xanax with alcohol, as the two substances amplify each other’s effects. Mixing alcohol with Xanax may lead to short-term memory loss, causing unintentional overdoses, possible loss of consciousness, and brain damage.

Potential Benefits and Risks of Mixing Cannabis and Xanax

Mixing cannabis and Xanax has more risks than benefits, and you should not combine the substances without your doctor’s approval.

For some people, cannabis may increase anxiety, especially when using high-THC strains. Therefore, using cannabis could counteract the desired effects of Xanax for some individuals.

For other people, cannabis and Xanax may have a similar effect and intensify feelings of relaxation.

There is no way to be sure how your body will react to the substances, so be sure to consume the lowest doses possible or use hemp-derived CBD instead of cannabis. At the same time, CBD may also cause anxiety in some people, so be mindful if you consume the cannabinoid and Xanax together.

Potential Benefits

Consuming cannabis and Xanax may result in intense feelings of relaxation. For people with anxiety, this may be a very desirable effect. But achieving this tranquility is not without risk and could quickly become problematic due to drug interaction and addiction risks.

Potential Risks

Combining cannabis and Xanax has several potential risks that increase as dosages increase. Lower doses of the two substances may be tolerable for some people, and higher doses should be avoided. In elevated doses, mixing Xanax and cannabis may cause:

  • Severe drowsiness
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Slurred speech
  • Nausea

In addition, some people may experience more serious side effects. Seek immediate medical attention when using Xanax and marijuana if you experience any of the following:

  • Blurry vision
  • Respiratory depression (slow or labored breathing)
  • Vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Aggressive thoughts or behavior

Seizures and loss of consciousness are rare occurrences when using weed with Xanax. If possible, have a trusted friend or family member nearby if you combine the two substances.

What to Do If You Need to Use Both Xanax and Marijuana

If you need to use Xanax and marijuana, you should take them at different times. For example, if you take cannabis in the morning, then take Xanax at night.

Speak with your healthcare provider about setting up a schedule to safely take both medications. Also, consult your doctor if you stop taking Xanax and are experiencing withdrawal symptoms such as rebound anxiety or flu-like symptoms.

The Bottom Line

Exercise caution if using Xanax and cannabis, and consult with your doctor first before mixing the two.

While the side effects of combining the two drugs are minor for most people, other individuals may experience more serious reactions such as respiratory depression, vomiting, or irregular/rapid heart rate. Always read the medication guide from your pharmacist before taking Xanax or any other prescription drug.

Consume cannabis responsibly with a medical marijuana card valid in your state of residence. Reach out to Leafwell’s experienced team of healthcare professionals and apply online today.

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