Is It Safe to Take Alprazolam (Xanax) While Breastfeeding?

5 min read
 Is It Safe to Take Alprazolam (Xanax) While Breastfeeding?

Is It Safe to Take Alprazolam (Xanax) While Breastfeeding?

Medications during pregnancy are also not a safe bet, and that is the reason why doctors prescribe very light dosage and not the strong ones. Breastfeeding is yet another time that comes post-delivery and is crucial for the baby as well as the mother. Many antibiotics are considered not safe during breastfeeding.  It threads the closeness, love, and health for both. Post-delivery also comes Postpartum depression as well as anxiety attacks and often the medicine alprazolam or Xanax is taken to alleviate or reduce it; however, one needs to be also cautious to see if its consumption is not posing any threat to the breastfeeding output or schedule.
It has been seen that this medication enters the mother’s milk and finally in the infant as well in no time. However, we still need to find out if by entering the infant’s body, does it cause any harm, its side-effects, the effect of low dosages on nursing and the better ways to manage anxiety.

What is Xanax?

Xanax is the brand name of the drug called alprazolam, and this is recommended by medical health experts for the treatment of anxiety attacks and panic ailments as well. It belongs to the class of drugs that can easily find their way to the mother’s milk.

Is Xanax Safe While Breastfeeding?

Xanax is undoubtedly the right choice for the cure of panic attacks and anxiety disorders but should be prohibited if the pregnant woman is feeding the baby as this drug can enter the infant’s body in smaller quantities by the breast milk. Even though the dosages are not a threat to life, but it can lead to breathing issues and can lead to the baby being sedated. It is also important to consult the medical health experts and mention that the woman is breastfeeding so that he can take the necessary steps and in case the medicine is still recommended, it becomes important to look for the side effects on the baby.
Few health problems that can cause discomfort for the baby because of the consumption of this drug are given below:

  • Fatigue
  • Loss of weight
  • Feeding issues or not ready to get breastfed
  • Sleepiness

Important Facts About Xanax

Xanax, an ideal remedy to alleviate or cut down the panic attacks and anxiety ailments. Yet, few specific details are important to know about Xanax. Some of them are mentioned below:

  • It is one of the most common medications that are recommended by medical experts for anxiety and depression.
  • The dosages come in four forms; 0.25 mg, 0.5 mg, 1mg and 2 mg.
  • This is available in a bar form which can further be taken in small dosages.
  • These pills are white in color, but its generic form could even be green or yellow.
  • The consumption of the dosage of Xanax upsurges the levels of the element in the human brain that induce calmness and offers relaxation.
  • It is addictive in nature due to its instant relief properties.
  • In the process of sudden or unexpected stoppage of this medication, one can witness these signs, which could be depression, sweating, headaches during breastfeeding, suicidal attempts, etc.
  • Not only the mother but even the baby shows signs of irritation, sleep disorders in babies, or weepiness.
  • Excess dosage of this medication can also lead to health ailments like body aches, headaches, sleepiness, lack of coordination, etc.
  • It is recommended to only take the prescribed dosage during pregnancy as well as lactation.
  • Its consumption does increase the production of breast milk but in turn, affects the mood and hormone levels.

Side Effects of Taking Xanax While Breastfeeding

As discussed earlier, that Xanax is not an ideal option to be given to the nursing mothers as it has its own disadvantages and side effects as well. The side effects could be between mild to acute ones dependent on the dosage that is taken. Not always, are they harmful, most of the time they disappear with the passing phases of time. In case any side-effects are experienced or manifested, immediate medical consultation is a must. The common side-effects that are seen after consuming Xanax while nursing is as below:

  • Dry mouth
  • Sleepiness
  • Forgetfulness
  • Libido changes
  • Blurry or unclear vision
  • Constipation
  • Swelling

The acute side effects that need consideration are as below:

  • Breathing issues
  • Jaundice
  • Suicidal tendency
  • Vertigo
  • Slurry speech
  • Memory loss
  • Unable to pass urine.

Allergic signs are breathing issues and swelling of lips, face, throat, and tongue.
The side effects or any allergies that are related to the consumption of Xanax should be reported to the medical experts immediately.

Low Dose Xanax And Breastfeeding

Lactation does get affected by excess consumption or regular intake of Xanax, but one single dosage of this drug does not harm much. In case a single dosage must be taken, the milk should be expressed and discarded for a period of 14 hours after consuming the medicine as that is its life, after which the Xanax will not be in the body, and further milk can be produced for breastfeeding.
In case this drug is taken on regular intervals it can pose several health hazards for the baby and if the medical experts believe its benefits are less, but disadvantages are more, in that case, donor milk needs to be arranged, or the baby needs to wean off or started with top feed.

Tips to Manage Anxiety

Lactation period after the delivery is yet another phase that characterizes stress and anxiety. It is totally new for the mother and with it comes the challenges of the new baby, sleepless nights, getting up at regular intervals, total lifestyle changes, adjusting to time, understanding and fulfilling the needs of your own body and the baby, but it is always best to opt for natural ways to be able to combat it than getting on medication. Some natural ways are listed as under:

  • Always take time for yourself and keep yourself relaxed and buy with recreational pastimes, be it listening to music, doing yoga, body massage, meditation, etc.
  • It is seen that if the mother listens to music while nursing the baby, it calms down the nerves and boosts milk production as well.
  • Always be open to taking help from the family members or the life partner.
  • Never skip meals as you need the energy to sail smoothly.
  • Have caffeine in limitation.
  • Prohibit taking alcohol as they tend to induce anxiety and panic.
  • The body needs to have a good amount of rest and throw away toxins from the body.
  • Let positivity surround you and do not let negative people or thoughts put you in depression, not good for the mother as well as the baby.
  • Everybody has their own anxieties, so be open and talk about your feelings and challenges to friends and family members. Every baby is different, so whether nursing for the first time or second time, challenges are bound to happen. Talking with friends and family, getting to learn from their experiences and sharing your help helps a lot.

Thus, Xanax is undoubtedly not the recommended drug to be taken at regular intervals while nursing more so, when the baby is a premature one. It is best to look for supplements of the same to be able to combat anxiety issues and help with breastfeeding as well.

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