About Xanax Bars
Xanax bars are bar-shaped tablets containing two milligrams alprazolam, an anxiolytic meant to treat severe anxiety, panic disorders and insomnia. Only the three-milligram, extended release Xanax tablets are stronger than Xanax bars. Xanax bars are designed to be cut into four sections. Xanax bars are not meant to be taken as one bar unless a doctor specifically prescribes this dosage. Xanax bars get their name from the horizontal lines creased into the pills and their “bar” sized shape.
Green Xanax Bars (street name “Hulk”)
Released more slowly than yellow or white xanax bars, “Hulks” provide reduced sedative effects than other Xanax bars since digestion of the drug occurs gradually. Unlike yellow or white Xanax bars, green Xanax bars are etched with just three lines instead of four. Some people think this means green Xanax bars are stronger because they have three lines but this is not the case.
Yellow Xanax Bars (street name “School Bus”)
Another popular Xanax bar are yellow bars that are cheap, keep their potency longer than other colored Xanax bars and do not contain the small amount of caffeine found in some Xanax tablets. Yellow Xanax bars are available as rapid or instant release.
White Xanax Bars (street name “Sticks”)
As immediate release Xanax bars, “Sticks” produce extreme sedation within minutes of ingestion. Xanax addicts prefer white bars because they work faster, are not generic and offer purer alprazolam than colored Xanax bars.
Xanax Bar MG
The medication comes in various colors and doses, depending on a physician’s prescription. These can include the following:
- Blue Xanax pills are elliptical and, generally, are a 1mg dose
- Pink and peach colored Xanax pills are of a similar shape and might be scored in the middle so a user can take just half of the 0.5mg dose
- Xanax bars are a heavier 2mg dose of the medication. They can be white, green and, for generic alprazolam, yellow
Misuse of Xanax Bars
Xanax abusers prefer bars because they provide more intense hypnotic effects than traditional Xanax tablets.
Misuse or abuse of Xanax, especially in tandem with alcohol and other drugs, is not just addictive; it can be life threatening as well. A study, published in April 2016 by the American Journal of Public Health, reports a 67 percent increase in anti-anxiety prescriptions, like Xanax, Valium and Ativan, between 1996 and 2013. Researchers also note that the rate of fatal overdose during the same period spiked.
“If we’re going to address the prescription drug crisis,” Dr. Marcus Bachhuber, the author of the study, told the New York Times, “we can’t just focus on opioids. We need to think more broadly about other drugs, like benzodiazepines.”
Though it’s taken a “backseat” to headlines about the opioid epidemic, the spotlight still, occasionally, lands on alprazolam, aka Xanax. The habit-forming benzodiazepine targets overactive neurotransmitters in the brain responsible for some anxiety and panic disorders brought on by depression.
Xanax Bars’ Street Names
Going by street-names like “yellow school bus” or “white ladders,” Xanax bars come scored – either three or four serrations, depending – so patients can take smaller portions of the 2mg dosage. Because of the higher potency, however, Xanax bars are a favorite on the black market and internet pharmacies.
As with any black market or overseas purchase of illegal drugs, Xanax users risk ingesting tainted pills that might contain any number of unknown chemicals that can create dangerous side effects.
Fake Xanax Bars
Less than two years ago, San Francisco health officials advised people not to buy Xanax on the street. A batch of Xanax bars laced with fentanyl, a potentially deadly opioid much more powerful than morphine, killed four people and put several others in the hospital. Overdose survivors of the counterfeit Xanax experienced fluid in the lungs, muscle breakdown and weakness in their extremities, all of which can lead to liver failure.
How Xanax Bars Are Used or Abused
The prescribed use of this medication is to swallow it with water. The most common form of abuse is to swallow more than the recommended dose. Using Xanax illicitly can quickly lead to tolerance and dependence. People abusing benzodiazepines will often chew the pill or crush it and snort the resulting powder in order to speed up tranquilizing “high” that Xanax has on the central nervous system.
Smoking crushed Xanax or injecting it after its liquefied is by no means safer. In fact, any of these methods can lead to serious withdrawal symptoms and come with a host of adverse side effects.
These can include:
- Confusion, dizziness, impaired coordination
- Unconsciousness and coma
- Seizures and hallucinations
- Slowed heart beat and difficulty breathing
Dangers of Abusing Xanax Bars
Overdosing on Xanax is more likely when you take bars instead of tablets simply because the onset of sedation and suppression of central nervous system functioning is quicker and stronger. Signs of a Xanax bar overdose include extreme drowsiness, periodic unconsciousness, slowed breathing/heart rate, vomiting while unconscious and shock. Without medical emergency treatment, a Xanax overdose patient could suffer seizures or lapse into a coma.
Another danger to abusing Xanax bars are the withdrawal symptoms affecting addicts who cannot access their drug of choice. People with a high tolerance for Xanax bars may feel the onset of withdrawal symptoms within six to 12 hours of taking their last Xanax bar. Nausea and vomiting, anxiety, panic, muscle tremors, fever and insomnia are classic Xanax withdrawal signs.
Longer periods of abstaining from Xanax bars often lead to severe depression, dehydration from vomiting and suicide ideation. Seizures may also affect Xanax addicts who have taken more than four milligrams a day for several months as the central nervous system lacks the ability to return to normal functioning.
Overdosing On Xanax Bars
The National Institutes of Health report a steady increase in Xanax and other benzodiazepine related overdose in the last decade, with an estimated 9,000 deaths in 2015 alone. While there might not be a steady stream of headlines about Xanax, there’s no safe method for abusing it. Addiction to benzodiazepines is treatable and individuals seeking help should not be stigmatized or feel any shame for needing help.
What are Non-Bar Xanax Tablets?
Blue, pink and peach-colored Xanax tablets contain less than two milligrams of alprazolam but are still as addictive as Xanax bars. Blue Xanax pills are one milligram elliptical tablets; peach Xanax pills are oval-shaped pills providing .5 milligrams of alprazolam; and .5 milligram pink Xanax pills have a line etched in the middle for easier splitting.
image of fake & real xanax pills –courtesy of CBS news