What Does Xanax (Alprazolam) Look Like?

Xanax is a medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of many mental health disorders. It has a specific appearance that can help you differentiate real Xanax from fake Xanax. Addiction treatment options may include inpatient or outpatient services.

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Dr. Manish Mishra, MBBS

Medically Reviewed By: Manish Mishra, MBBS


Alprazolam is a common anti-anxiety medication. Classified as a benzodiazepine, this drug is better known by its brand name, Xanax, which can be abused.

Xanax is used to treat several mental health conditions including anxiety disorders, panic attacks, and panic disorders.

This prescription drug works by interacting with the central nervous system. Specifically, Xanax enhances the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter your brain naturally releases when distressed.

It’s important to understand what all of the medications you’re taking look like in order to ensure you are taking the right drugs.

What Do Xanax Bars Look Like?

So, what does Xanax look like? This medication comes in what are commonly referred to as Xanax bars. These are small rectangular shaped pills, though the shape can vary.

They can also vary in color, usually according to the dosage. Alprazolam can be different colors including white, blue, orange, yellow, and green.

Physical Characteristics Of A Xanax Pill

The appearance of Xanax can also depend on the dosage of the medication. In other words, different strengths of alprazolam look different.

What Xanax 0.25 Pills Look Like

Xanax can come in a variety of denominations, one common one is 0.25 milligrams (mg). This form of the medication is usually small in size.

Other physical traits of this kind of Xanax pill include its oval-like shape and white color.

What Xanax 0.5 Pills Look Like

Another common dosage of Xanax is 0.5 mg. This dosage is also small in size, similar to the 0.25 mg dose.

However, this dose of Xanax is oval or round in shape and peachy orange in color.

How To Spot Fake Xanax

Now that you know what Xanax looks like, as a disclaimer, it’s vital to know that fake Xanax is also out there.

As a result, it can be essential to know how to spot the counterfeit version of Xanax. In some cases, the fake version may contain dangerous additives like opioids or fentanyl.

White Or Off-Color Coating

One way you can identify fake Xanax is by examining the color of the coating on the pills. The coating of alprazolam should be consistent with the rest of the pill and be opaque.

Fake Xanax will often be a different color than the rest of the pill or not as opaque. Specifically, you may notice a dark gray or bright white coating.

No Markings On Pills

Another easy way to tell if your Xanax pills are fake is by checking for markings on the pills. Authentic alprazolam only has the word ‘Xanax’ imprinted on it.

That being said, if you don’t see this marking or see additional ones, there’s a good chance the pills are fake.

Misspelled Labels

You can also look to the pill bottle to determine if your Xanax pills are real. Xanax labels from pharmaceutical companies shouldn’t have any typos or errors.

If you notice misspellings, odd spacing, or altered font, you could be dealing with fake Xanax.

Not Water Soluble

Lastly, water solubility can help you determine whether your Xanax is authentic. Real Xanax dissolves in water quite quickly.

If you notice that your pills don’t dissolve or only somewhat dissolve, they’re most likely counterfeit.

Treatment Programs For Xanax Addiction

Xanax abuse, like other kinds of substance use disorders, can lead to serious problems like dependence or addiction.

When this occurs, you may experience Xanax withdrawal symptoms, most of which are very unpleasant.

Xanax addiction can quickly become life-threatening, so seeking medical advice from a healthcare provider is usually the best plan of action.

Located in Canton, MA, Bedrock Recovery Center is a certified treatment center suited for treating all kinds of substance abuse.

We make sure to tailor our Xanax addiction treatment to you to ensure you have the most successful journey to recovery.

From detox support, medication-assisted treatment, and inpatient programs to recovery education, support groups, and therapy, you’ll have access to everything you need at Bedrock.

Find Substance Use Disorder Treatment At Bedrock Recovery Center

Are you or your loved one ready to conquer drug abuse? Call our helpline at Bedrock Recovery Center now for more information on our comprehensive recovery programs.

  1. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/alprazolam-oral-route/description/drg-20061040
  2. National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Treatments/Mental-Health-Medications/Types-of-Medication/Alprazolam-(Xanax)
  3. City of Portland https://www.portlandoregon.gov/police/article/738403

Written by Bedrock Recovery Center Editorial Team

© 2024 Bedrock Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

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