Snorting Xanax | Effects & Dangers

Manish Mishra, MBBS

Medically Reviewed By: Manish Mishra, MBBS


Snorting Xanax is a form of drug abuse that can cause drowsiness, nosebleeds, physical dependency, and respiratory depression.

Snorting Xanax can cause side effects such as drowsiness, nosebleeds, physical dependency, and respiratory depression.

Snorting Xanax is a form of drug abuse, as this method of Xanax use is not medically approved for the treatment of anxiety disorders and panic disorders. Snorting can lead to a faster onset of the effects of benzodiazepines, but also additional health risks.

Data from 2017 reported snorting as a common method of brand name prescription drug abuse in Ohio. Xanax abuse may be done in tandem with other forms of drug use, such as taking stimulants or amphetamines.

Snorting Xanax

The process of snorting Xanax may begin with buying Xanax tablets or pills. These pills may be obtained as a prescription medication or through illegal means.

Xanax pills can be crushed into a fine powder with common household items. The powder can be gathered into a pile and snorted through a straw.

Alprazolam can reach the central nervous system quickly if it is snorted, leading to the release of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurotransmitter. Snorting is likely a popular option for people looking for a benzodiazepine high.

Effects Of Snorting Xanax

The side effects of Xanax may be stronger if the drug is snorted, and may include:

  • sedation
  • drowsiness
  • blurry vision
  • lightheadedness
  • headache
  • confusion
  • nosebleeds

Dangers Of Snorting Xanax

Snorting Xanax can cause serious health problems in both the short-term and long-term. Snorting can also harm your nasal passages, which is unique to this method of substance abuse.

Drug Overdose

A Xanax overdose can occur through snorting because the drug reaches the brain faster. Higher doses can effectively be ingested through snorting even if the dosage is the same. Xanax overdoses can cause life-threatening respiratory depression, or slowed breathing.

If you buy Xanax from an illegal source, there is a chance you may have purchased counterfeit forms of the drug. Fake Xanax may contain potent substances such as fentanyl, methamphetamine, or high amounts of alprazolam.

Snorting fake Xanax can lead to an increased risk of overdose on benzodiazepines and opioids. Obtaining Xanax from approved healthcare providers and taking it as directed can decrease your overdose risk.

Long-Term Health Problems

Over time, snorting Xanax can deteriorate your nasal cavity, leading to frequent nosebleeds, obstructed airways, sinus infections, and the collapse of your septum.

Snorting Xanax may also increase your risk for a substance use disorder or addiction, where you are unable to stop taking Xanax. Those with drug addiction may suffer from a decreased quality of life and experience Xanax withdrawal symptoms when trying to quit.

Find Addiction Treatment Today

If you would like to find out if our Xanax addiction treatment program works for you or your loved one, please contact Ohio Recovery Center. Our comprehensive inpatient treatment options include medical detox, tapering schedules, mental health services, and other healthcare options.

  1. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
  2. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  3. National Library of Medicine: StatPearls

Written by Ohio Recovery Center Editorial Team

© 2024 Ohio Recovery Center | All Rights Reserved

* This page does not provide medical advice.

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