Due to Xanax side effects and the benzodiazepine’s high potential for abuse and addiction, this medication is only indicated for short-term use.
Xanax is a branded formulation of alprazolam, a benzo from the same family as these common anti-anxiety drugs:
Xanax is typically prescribed to treat panic disorders and anxiety disorders.
Benzos work by reducing excitement in the CNS (central nervous system) and brain, triggering a sense of calm. Xanax induces this calming effect by intensifying the effects of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid). GABA is a chemical that occurs in the brain.
Xanax gained approval by the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) in 1981 and the medication is still commonly prescribed in 2023, despite a range of adverse side effects and its abuse potential.