Drugs Q & A

Does Xanax Help With Pain and Overthinking?

Xanax, a medication that belongs to the benzodiazepine class, is primarily prescribed to manage anxiety and panic disorders. While it is highly effective in addressing these conditions, some individuals wonder if it can extend its benefits to alleviate pain and overthinking.

In this article, we will explore the relationship between Xanax and pain relief, as well as its impact on overthinking, shedding light on the potential benefits and considerations associated with its use for these purposes.

Xanax for Pain Relief

Xanax is not typically prescribed as a pain relief medication. Its primary mechanism of action is to enhance the effects of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain, which results in calming effects and reduced anxiety. While Xanax may indirectly contribute to pain relief by promoting relaxation, it is not a suitable substitute for traditional pain medications like opioids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), or acetaminophen. Nevertheless, results from one study suggest that the combination of Xanax and ibuprofen may be more effective in relieving pain following an endodontic procedure compared to using ibuprofen alone.

Using Xanax for pain relief without a healthcare provider’s guidance can be problematic. Benzodiazepines like Xanax carry a risk of dependence and addiction when used for extended periods. Additionally, they can have side effects such as drowsiness, dizziness, and impaired coordination, which may not be suitable for all individuals, especially those needing to remain alert and functional.

Xanax and Overthinking

Xanax’s primary role in managing anxiety disorders often leads to reduced overthinking and rumination for individuals experiencing excessive worrying or racing thoughts. By calming the central nervous system, Xanax can help individuals break free from the cycle of overthinking and regain a sense of mental tranquility.

However, it’s crucial to use Xanax for overthinking under the guidance of a healthcare provider. Overthinking can have various underlying causes, including anxiety disorders, depression, or obsessive-compulsive tendencies. A comprehensive evaluation is essential to determine the most appropriate treatment approach, which may include therapy, lifestyle modifications, or other medications.


While Xanax is a potent medication for managing anxiety and panic disorders, it is not intended for pain relief and should not be used for this purpose without a healthcare provider’s supervision. Its role in reducing overthinking is related to its anxiety-reducing effects, but it should be used cautiously for this purpose as well.

Individuals seeking relief from pain or overthinking should consult with a healthcare provider to explore appropriate treatment options tailored to their specific needs. In many cases, alternative medications or therapies may be more suitable and carry fewer risks than Xanax, especially when addressing chronic pain or persistent overthinking. Ultimately, the use of Xanax should be guided by a healthcare professional to ensure safe and effective treatment for the intended condition.


Dr. Oche Otorkpa PG Cert, MPH, PhD

Dr. Oche is a seasoned Public Health specialist who holds a post graduate certificate in Pharmacology and Therapeutics, an MPH, and a PhD both from Texila American University. He is a member of the International Society of Substance Use Professionals and a Fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health in the UK. He authored two books: "The Unseen Terrorist," published by AuthorHouse UK, and "The Night Before I Killed Addiction."
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