Xanax - How Long Does It Last?


Asked by ltlmiss

Xanax - How Long Does It Last?

If I take 0.5mg of Xanax, I've been told that it will take effect within 30 minutes, but I can't find information about when the effects wear off. Anyone have any experience with it that can comment?


Xanax is an anti-anxiety medication in a class of medications calledbenzodiazepines. It is often prescribed forpanic disorder andgeneralized anxiety disorder. These are considered "short-acting" medications because, similar to taking Tylenol, they are only effective for a certain amount of time - they do not build up in your body over time asantidepressant medications do. Because everyone metabolizes medication at different rates, there is no exact time Xanax will be effective, however, the average is between four and six hours. Remember, this is an average, you might notice the effects of Xanax wearing off much sooner or you could find that after five hours you still feel less anxious.

Benzodiazepines are commonly prescribed for anxiety because they work quickly and can be taken on an as-needed basis. They help reduce symptoms of anxiety, but medications do not cure anxiety. When taking Xanax, or other benzodiazepines, you may want to also consider therapy, such ascognitive behavioral therapy, which teaches you skills to manage anxiety symptoms.

Also, keep in mind that while Xanax is considered safe and effective when used as prescribed, it can be addictive and it is dangerous to mix it with alcohol. You might also experience some side effects, such as drowsiness, dizziness, stomach upset, slow reflexes or impaired thinking. It is important to not drive or operate machinery until you know how Xanax affects you. You should also not stop taking this medication abruptly as it can cause withdrawal. If you want to stop taking Xanax, talk with your doctor about tapering it down slowly.

For more information:

Who Is at Risk for Developing Panic Disorder?

Self-Help Tips for Panic Disorder

Frequently Asked Questions About Generalized Anxiety Disorder

You should know: The answer above provides general health information that is not intended to replace medical advice or treatment recommendations from a qualified healthcare professional.