Anxiety and panic disorders were once misunderstood mental health issues. Thankfully, various methods have been invented to help with these problems.

As scientists continue to do research, they are finding various links between the mind and body. Anxiety and blood pressure are linked, and Xanax is connected to the effects of both. People who take blood pressure or heart medications should probably not take Xanax because it can cause adverse interactions.

Though Xanax and other benzodiazepines can induce a feeling of calm, they can also increase blood pressure, which can be problematic if you are taking other medications to regulate it.

Anxiety, Blood Pressure and Xanax

According to Psychology Today, anxiety causes a temporary rise in blood pressure. If these episodes of blood pressure increase keep happening, they may harm the heart, kidneys, and blood vessels.

In addition, the regular use of antidepressants could increase a person’s blood pressure. Anti-anxiety medication such as Xanax could also play a role in the rise in blood pressure.

This is because they are habit-forming, and becoming addicted to or dependent on a drug also causes anxiety. Thus, anxiety and higher blood pressure become a cycle, making it hard to know which one causes the other.

According to Mayo Clinic, anxiety itself could increase a person’s blood pressure because they may turn to unhealthy ways to cope with it, such as smoking cigarettes, overeating, or drinking alcohol.

The Heart & Vascular Institute at John’s Hopkins University states that scientists are still studying the role of anxiety in heart disease, but the two do seem closely intertwined.

Research at John’s Hopkins indicates that heart disease leads to heart attacks, which could cause a person to respond with post-traumatic stress disorder. This is because:

  • Heart attacks put the person at risk of death, which causes trauma after the event.
  • Anxiety after a heart attack could make it harder for a person to sleep.
  • A person may think negatively about their future or feel their life has suddenly become shorter.

Xanax Dependency and Its Role in Anxiety

Xanax may be able to help people with anxiety, but it is not meant to be used as a long-term treatment for this problem.

In 2014, a woman named Jenna talked to Fox News about how Xanax affected her after eight years of use. She mentioned that she passed out, and two days later she was having trouble with everyday tasks such as drinking water.

Jenna said she had run out of Xanax when she passed out, and her mother found her in the fetal position during a visit.

Person getting their blood pressure checked

Thankfully, she was taken to the emergency room and given a similar benzodiazepine.

The article mentioned that people can build dependency on Xanax in as little as a month, even after taking it as a person’s doctor ordered.

Some people may quit taking it suddenly because they fear they are dependent on Xanax, but this leads to withdrawal.

The problem with Xanax dependency and associated symptoms could be connected to several factors:

  • Many primary care doctors prescribe Xanax, not just psychiatrists.
  • Xanax itself may be causing some negative side effects in patients, and doctors increase the dosage instead of getting to the bottom of the patient’s symptoms, as mentioned in the Fox News article.
  • There is a demand for a quick solution instead of long-term treatments that could prove more beneficial.
  • Overprescribing Xanax is becoming a public health concern.
  • Doctors have little time to examine patients and truly get to know their needs.

What About People With Previous Blood Pressure or Heart Issues?

Xanax could interact adversely with certain blood pressure or heart medications. This does not necessarily mean an individual cannot take Xanax, but that is why disclosing anything one is taking — prescriptions, over-the-counter medication, or even supplements — is important.

Doctors can take the right precautions if they have a full understanding of a person’s medical history. Even so, patients who have been prescribed Xanax should pay attention to its common side effects and talk to a doctor about alternative treatments if they notice certain symptoms such as:

  • Slurred speech
  •  Changes in weight
  •  Headaches
  •  Twitching or trembling
  •  Fatigue
  •  Irregular heartbeat
  •  Anxiety
  •  Decreased blood pressure
  •  Hallucinations

Many of these side effects of Xanax are quite rare, but they are probably not expected and could even cause a person to feel more anxious as a result. Again, this often results in a cycle in which the drug used to treat the problem could cause anxiety or worsen it.

Xanax could also cause sleepiness in people, and they should not operate machinery or drive when they begin taking it.Psychology Today says that people who have anxiety or heart issues can consider other methods to feel better if they would rather avoid the risks of taking benzodiazepines like Xanax. Exercise, meditation, healthy eating habits, and therapy require more time, but they rarely create the types of problems often attributed to Xanax.

Does Xanax Thin Your Blood?

Does Xanax Thin Your Blood?

Xanax is a benzodiazepine, and this class of medications is not known to thin one’s blood. Common blood thinners are warfarin, coumadin, heparin sodium, Xarelto, and others. While Xanax is not a blood thinner, it can temporarily lower your blood pressure, according to Healthline. That’s because it slows down the central nervous system.

Some people who use Xanax with other medications, such as aspirin, and substances may think Xanax is thinning their blood, but this would be rare. 

Can Xanax Help Irregular Heartbeat?

Can Xanax Help Irregular Heartbeat? lists irregular heartbeat as a side effect of Xanax use. It’s not a drug used to help or treat this condition. If you or someone you know is experiencing an irregular heartbeat after using Xanax, you should seek prompt care from a physician. According to eHealthMe, irregular heartbeat affects regular Xanax users who are female and age 60+. 

Some may wonder if Xanax helps treat heart palpitations, but those, too, are side effects of the drug. Heart palpitations can feel like fluttering sensations in the heart. Some report them as feeling like their heart is racing, pounding, or skipping beats. reports that users have reported having heart palpitations after using the immediate-release form of Xanax. Heart palpitations are not an intended effect of Xanax. If you have them while using them, you should see your doctor.

Some Xanax users have experienced a faster heart rate after use. This condition is called tachycardia. It could occur in patients who stopped taking Xanax and now feel more anxiety now that Xanax use has stopped.

People who go into withdrawal after stopping using Xanax can also have heart palpitations along with other symptoms that commonly occur when coming off a drug. Symptoms of drug withdrawal vary according to the person. If you are trying to end chronic Xanax use, you may want to enter a professional treatment program where your heart health is monitored around the clock while you come off Xanax use.

Medical professionals can explain Xanax’s effects on your cardiovascular system and tell you if a heart condition is something you should be concerned about. They can also administer medications to help you manage any heart conditions you may have.

Does Xanax Slow Your Heart Down?

Does Xanax Slow Your Heart Down?

The short answer to this question is yes. Xanax slows down essential functions like breathing and heart rate and temporarily lowers blood pressure. If you were to consume Xanax before getting your blood pressure testing, the reading would likely be lower than usual. In a controlled study of 53 participants with elevated blood pressure, Xanax was as effective as captopril at lowering blood pressure. 

Xanax also produces similar effects over the long term. Those over the age of 60 who were administered benzodiazepines over a prolonged period reported lower blood pressure, and Xanax use was associated with a reduced risk of significant adverse cardiovascular events in those with high blood pressure, including strokes and heart attacks. With that said, using Xanax for extended periods is not recommended because of its addiction risk. It can lower one’s heart rate, so Xanax use must be monitored closely.

Can Xanax Stop a Heart Attack?

Can Xanax Stop a Heart Attack?

Although it hasn’t been proven, researchers suggest that benzodiazepines can help with a heart attack. Benzodiazepines like Xanax should be the first course of treatment for someone with cardiovascular disease and improve the survival rate for someone with congestive heart failure. 

Benzodiazepines used in the treatment of cardiovascular disease showed promising results, and researchers are working to prove these to potentially be used as a first-line treatment for those with the condition. 

Can Anxiety Cause High Blood Pressure?

Can Anxiety Cause High Blood Pressure?

Surprisingly, anxiety doesn’t cause long-term high blood pressure. However, episodes of anxiety are known to be dramatic, leading to temporary spikes in blood pressure. If those temporary spikes often occur, such as every day, it will lead to damage to the heart, kidneys, and blood vessels, similar to chronic high blood pressure. Those who are stressed out or anxious are more likely to engage in unhealthy habits that lead to a spike in blood pressure. These include the following:

  • Overeating or eating unhealthy foods
  • Consuming alcoholic beverages
  • Smoking tobacco

Some of the medications used to treat anxiety, such as serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), can cause a spike in blood pressure. If you’re having difficulties controlling anxiety or it’s causing issues in your daily life, you must speak to a doctor to find the appropriate treatment.

Does Alcohol Thin the Blood?

Does Alcohol Thin the Blood?

Alcohol thins the blood by preventing blood cells from sticking together to form clots, which may lower the risk of strokes caused by blockages in the blood vessels. However, despite this effect, alcohol consumption can increase the risk for the bleeding type of strokes. This is especially true in those who drink to excess, meaning men who have more than two drinks a day and women who have more than one drink a day. Excessive alcohol consumption can post severe risks to your health. 

When you sustain an injury, blood cells known as platelets rush to the injury site. The cells are sticky and clump together. Platelets will also release proteins to form a plug and stop the bleeding. Clotting is beneficial when sustaining an injury. However, blood clots can also be dangerous. When clots block the flow of blood to your heart, it can lead to a heart attack. When it blocks the flow to your brain, it can lead to a stroke. 

Alcohol interferes with clotting in a few ways:

  • By reducing the number of platelets in the blood
  • Making the platelets you have less sticky

Drinking a glass of wine each day might prevent your risk for heart disease, similar to taking aspirin daily to prevent strokes. However, consuming more than three drinks a day increases your risk of hemorrhagic strokes.

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