All about Xanax
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Xanax and drivingThere are several adverse reactions and problems which may be associated with the intake of Xanax (generic – Alprazolam). Worsening for the cognitive and psychomotor operation as well as daytime sedation is in the list. These conditions pose real problems for all Alprazolam users, who need to operate vehicles, either regular cars or heavy machinery. This benzodiazepine is responsible for car accidents even when the doses are low. This is why Xanax and driving shouldn’t be connected.

Scientists take into account a very huge amount of Alprazolam recipes these days, the negative effects triggered by the consumption of this medication and possible cases of overdose, which allows them to come to a conclusion that daily Xanax intake as well as the driving activity is one of the major concerns for society.

What Xanax Side Effects Cause Driving Problems?

Why is Xanax driving out of the question today? The matter is that Alprazolam leads to several side effects that are unacceptable while you are at the wheel:

  • Dizziness;
  • Reduced vigilance;
  • Drowsiness;
  • Irritability.

Every user knows that Xanax is designed to reduce negative reactions related with panic attacks and anxiety, yet still the remedy has a few negative reactions of its own. As for today, it is still not clear, whether the reduction in performance impairment is somehow related to Alprazolam solely, because there are laboratory trials, which showed that cognition difficulties and psychomotor function problems had no implication for drivers treated with the remedy.

Most studies concentrated on comparing different effects of Alprazolam during highway driving tests. Driving impairment was expected to be less after Xanax XR than after Xanax IR because of the existing differences in the pharmacological profiled of both medications. However, all studies showed that both types of medications lead to similar results.

Xanax and Driving Study

Most Alprazolam patients participate in various everyday activities. It’s important that driving is in the list. The results of the chemical on persons’ driving performance haven’t been studied properly before. There was a special study performed several years ago to check the psychomotor as well as memory performance in driving users of Xanax.

Around 20 volunteers took part in the randomized and placebo research. Around sixty minutes after administering one milligram of the medication, participants performed a regular driving test that took place on a primary highway during regular traffic (not the rush hours). The speed they had to drive with was 90 km/hour. They also had to maintain a steady lateral position in the right traffic lane.

The factors that were assesses during and after driving included:

  • Quality of driving;
  • Brain activation while driving;
  • Mental performance while driving.

When compared to placebo, Xanax has triggered rather serious driving deteriorations:

  • Significantly increased levels of SDLP – (p <0.0001, (F(1.19) = 97.3);
  • Significantly increased levels of SDS – (p <0.0001, F(1.19) = 30.4);
  • Rather impaired quality of driving – (p <0.001, F(1.19) = 16.4);
  • Comparatively decreased alertness (p <0.0001, F(1.19) = 43.4);
  • Decrease in mental activation – (p <0.03, F(1.19) = 5.7);
  • Increased levels of mental effort while driving – (p <0.0001, F(1.19) = 26.4).

The addictive affects appeared to be more powerful. Addicted users didn’t show tolerance effects in psychomotor related driving skills and psychomotor tests. Healthy patients, who have never administered Alprazolam before, reported a comparatively increased sleepiness that reflected on their driving performance.

The Xanax driving ability was worse in healthy patients, who weren’t treated with the medication before. And though the medication hasn’t affected regular users greatly, doctors still don’t suggest taking the medication before or while driving.

Dr. Andrew J. Olson

Author: Dr. Andrew J. Olson

Dr. Andrew J. Olson is a PHD in psychiatry. He is also a psychiatrist consultant at the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust. He also serves as a Clinical Director of the Department of Psychiatry, at Royal Marsden Hospital, in London, UK.


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There are several adverse reactions and problems which may be associated with the intake of Xanax (generic – Alprazolam). Worsening for the cognitive and psychomotor operation as well as daytime sedation is in the list. These conditions pose real problems for all Alprazolam users, who need to operate vehicles, either regular cars or heavy machinery. This benzodiazepine is responsible for car accidents even when the doses are low. This is why Xanax and driving shouldn’t be connected. Scientists take into account a very huge amount of Alprazolam recipes these days, the negative effects triggered by the consumption of this medication…
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