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Risks Of Mixing Xanax (Alprazolam) And Cocaine

Mixing Xanax and cocaine may seem like a way to increase your high, but the dangers of this drug combination can be very serious, and even deadly in some cases.

There are many risks of mixing Xanax (alprazolam) and cocaine that people should be aware of. Mixing these drugs could cause several side effects and may even lead to death in some cases.

To help you better understand the risks of mixing Xanax and cocaine, here is everything you need to know about this dangerous drug combination.

Dangers Of Using Xanax And Cocaine Together

It’s not safe to mix Xanax with a number of medications and substances due to the risk for adverse side effects. Mixing Xanax and cocaine can lead to some of the most dangerous side effects.

Polydrug Abuse

When you use more than one drug at a time, it’s called polydrug abuse or polysubstance abuse. Mixing drugs can have dangerous consequences and even cause death.

For example, mixing cocaine with alcohol or other drugs like marijuana or heroin can increase your risk of overdose.

Mixing benzodiazepines like Xanax with stimulants like cocaine is particularly risky because they both act on GABA receptors in your brain — Xanax decreases your body’s functions and cocaine excites them.


When one drug enhances or increases another drug’s effects, it’s called potentiation.

Xanax and cocaine may potentiate the actions of each drug, particularly because they have opposing effects. You may take more Xanax to counteract the stimulating effect of cocaine, and vice versa.

Cardiovascular Damage

Mixing Xanax with other substances, such as cocaine and alcohol, can cause serious damage to your heart and cardiovascular system.

Cocaine works to increase your heart rate. If you use too much, it can lead to a heart attack or stroke.

Worsened Depression

Mixing cocaine with benzodiazepines like Xanax can cause depression to worsen.

Xanax is used to treat depression, but misuse of it can have the opposite effect, and increase your symptoms of depression.

Side Effects Of Mixing Xanax And Cocaine

Cocaine is a stimulant that induces feelings of euphoria and confidence, so it’s easy to see why people mix it with other drugs or alcohol.

As such, some may assume that the effects of cocaine are enhanced when they are paired with anti-anxiety drugs like Xanax, a known ‘downer.’

However, due to how Xanax works in the brain, mixing these substances can lead to unpleasant side effects.

The combined effects of Xanax and cocaine may include:

How Xanax And Cocaine Are Different

Cocaine is a central nervous system stimulant, while Xanax is a central nervous system depressant.

Xanax use and cocaine use both work by changing how neurons in your brain communicate with each other.

Here are the other differences between cocaine and Xanax.

Opposite Effects

Cocaine and alprazolam have opposite effects on your brain and body. Alprazolam’s main function in your body is to slow down activity in your brain.

This makes it useful for treating anxiety and panic disorders, as well as insomnia. Xanax works by slowing certain body functions, such as breathing and heart rates.

Cocaine, in contrast, has no medical use and can increase heart rate and blood pressure. The opposing effects of these two drugs is what makes them risky to combine.

Xanax Is A Prescription Medication

Another difference between alprazolam and cocaine is that one is a prescription medication and one is an illegal drug.

If you’re taking alprazolam for a medical condition, it’s important to remember that mixing it with cocaine abuse can be dangerous.

Can Mixing Cocaine And Xanax Cause An Overdose?

It’s possible to overdose on both cocaine and Xanax. Mixing them together can increase your risk of experiencing serious side effects.

Mixing these drugs increases your chance of experiencing a cocaine or Xanax overdose because they both impact your central nervous system and heart rate, which can make it difficult for your body to regulate a safe heart rate.

The coadministration of cocaine and alprazolam may cause seizures, excessive sweating, high blood pressure, hyperthermia (increased body temperature), and tachycardia.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, mixing Xanax with other drugs (particularly opioids) greatly increases the risk for life-threatening overdose.

In fact, most benzodiazepine overdose deaths involve other drugs as well, such as fentanyl, other benzos, or methamphetamine.

Treatment Programs For Drug Abuse

There are various treatments for prescription drug abuse, substance abuse, and drug addiction, depending on your age, health, and severity of the addiction.

Some cocaine addiction treatment and Xanax addiction treatment options include inpatient addiction treatment centers, outpatient treatment centers, and sober living homes.

Medical detox is often the first step, and allows you to rid your body of all substances.

It may be followed by a period of residential treatment, which is most effective when coupled with aftercare programs such as 12-step meetings, counseling, or therapy.

Medications can also be used to help with withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

Find Substance Use Disorder Treatment At Bedrock Recovery Center

When you have a serious polysubstance use issue, it can be hard to make decisions about how and where to get help.

Fortunately, you can find the help you need through Bedrock Recovery Center. We provide behavioral health programs which treat both drug use issues and any mental health issues which may affect them.

Learn more about our substance use disorder treatment options for you or your loved one by calling our helpline today.

Written by
Bedrock Recovery Editorial Team

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This page does not provide medical advice.

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