Xanax is a benzodiazepine medication that is used to treat anxiety disorders, sleep problems and seizures. It is only meant for short-term use since it is very addictive. Because of the drug’s relaxing effects, people often misuse it. Some people may take it more often or at higher doses than prescribed by a doctor, and others use it recreationally without a prescription.
Cocaine, or coke, is a white powder that comes from the leaves of the coca plant. It has no accepted medical uses but is often taken as a street drug. Coke gives people an intense but short-lasting high. Once the effects of this substance start to wear off, people may crash and suddenly start to feel sad or tired.
People sometimes mix Xanax and coke because they feel that Xanax can help ease the effects that occur when coming down from a cocaine high. However, combining these substances can often increase feelings of depression and worsen other negative physical and mental side effects.
Is It Bad to Mix Xanax and Coke?
Cocaine is a stimulant, which means that it ramps up different processes in the body. It can make people feel more energetic and happy as well as increase their heart rate and breathing speed. For these reasons, people often refer to it as an “upper.” Xanax has the opposite effect and slows down these processes, leading people to label it as a “downer.” It is bad to mix Xanax and coke because of these opposing effects on the body.
Each drug comes with its own set of side effects. Mixing cocaine and Xanax together, or combining them with other substances, often makes these side effects worse. Additionally, the interaction of Xanax and cocaine in the body can make people more likely to have an overdose. Lastly, regularly taking Xanax and coke at the same time makes a person more likely to become addicted to both drugs.
Short-Term Dangers of Mixing Xanax and Coke
Short-term effects of taking Xanax may include:
- Short-Term Side Effects of Xanax
Dizziness or balance problems
Problems focusing or remembering things
Feeling irritable or depressed
Low blood pressure
Cocaine can make someone experience:
- Short-Term Side Effects of Cocaine
Sensitivity to light and sound
Anxiety or depression
Mixing Xanax and coke makes many of these side effects more prominent. In particular, taking these drugs together can have profound impacts on a person’s mental health. Each can increase feelings of sadness and irritability, and the combination can put a person at a higher risk of suicide. People may also be more likely to engage in risky behavior or try to hurt others when they have taken both drugs.
Symptoms often become worse when a person takes both drugs. Unfortunately, people are also less likely to notice certain negative side effects because of the contrasting effects that these two drugs have. When using both drugs, people may not realize when cocaine is making them feel too worked up or causing their heart to beat too fast. This occurs because they are feeling mellow from the Xanax. On the other hand, a person may not realize when Xanax is causing their body to slow too far down because the cocaine is making them feel more mentally alert and energetic.
If someone mistakenly thinks that they aren’t feeling strong effects from one of these drugs, they may take more and become more likely to have an overdose. The number of deaths due to cocaine and benzodiazepine overdoses has risen in recent years.
Xanax and Coke Overdose
During a Xanax overdose, a person’s bodily processes can slow down so much that they stop altogether. Symptoms include:
- Symptoms of Xanax Overdose
Low heart rate
Blue-tinged skin because of low body temperature
Slow, difficult breathing
Feeling weak or unable to move
Cocaine can make a person’s body speed up so much that their organs can’t function properly. Symptoms include:
- Symptoms of Cocaine Overdose
Fast heart rate
Sweating because of high body temperature
Nausea or vomiting
Shaking or muscle twitches
People who combine these substances should be aware of the symptoms of Xanax and coke overdoses. Someone who has overdose symptoms should be treated by a medical professional right away before long-term damage or death occurs. Those who take Xanax after coke may be tempted to take too much cocaine because they feel extra relaxed and want to feel energetic again. Limiting the amounts of each drug taken can help people avoid overdosing.
Long-Term Dangers of Mixing Coke with Xanax
One of the biggest long-term risks of mixing coke with Xanax is the increased chance of developing tolerance, dependence, and addiction. Drug tolerance occurs when the body gets used to a substance, causing a person to need larger doses in order to feel an effect. Dependence refers to a condition where a person takes drugs often enough that they will go through withdrawal if they stop. Addiction is a disease where someone can’t control how often they use a substance, and they continue using substances despite negative consequences.
The more often someone uses drugs or alcohol, the more likely they are to experience all three of these things. Their risk further increases if they regularly use multiple substances at a time.
Frequently combining cocaine and Xanax can also lead to liver damage. The liver metabolizes drugs and alcohol to break them down and remove them from the body. If someone takes multiple drugs, the liver may not be able to metabolize them quickly enough. This can lead to a buildup of toxins in the liver and other parts of the body.
Each substance also has other long-term effects. For example, people often have certain symptoms related to how they use cocaine. Someone who snorts cocaine over a long period of time may develop nose damage, and people who inject the drug can damage their blood vessels. The major risks of long-term Xanax use are mostly related to the high chances of becoming tolerant and addicted to the drug.
Are you or someone you love having problems quitting cocaine or Xanax? If so, The Recovery Village Palm Beach at Baptist Health is here to help. Contact us today to learn more about treatment plans and programs that can work well for your situation.
Ait-Daoud, Nassima; et al. “A Review of Alprazolam Use, Misuse, and Withdrawal.” Journal of Addiction Medicine, January-February 2018. Accessed October 7, 2019.
National Institute on Drug Abuse. “Cocaine.” Revised July 2018. Accessed October 7, 2019.
National Institute on Drug Abuse. “Overdose Death Rates.” Revised January 2019. Accessed October 7, 2019.
National Institute on Drug Abuse for Teens. “Tolerance, Dependence, Addiction: What’s the Difference?” January 12, 2017. Accessed October 7, 2019.
Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.