skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 221931 Find in a Library
Title: Alprazolam (XANAX) Use Among Southern Youth: Beliefs and Social Norms Concerning Dangerous Rides on "Handlebars"
Journal: Journal of Drug Education  Volume:37  Issue:4  Dated:2007  Pages:417-428
Author(s): Ronald J. Peters Jr.; Angela F. Meshack; Steven H. Kelder; Patrick Webb; Dexter Smith; Kevin Garner
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 12
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This pilot study used a qualitative approach in investigating relevant beliefs, norms, and perceived addiction associated with alprazolam (XANAX) initiation among 46 youth who were participating in an inpatient drug treatment program during the spring of 2004.
Abstract: Alprazolam has been widely prescribed to treat anxiety and panic disorder and falls within the class of drugs known as benzodiazepines or central nervous system depressants. Side effects from the use of alprazolam include impaired psychomotor performance, impaired memory, ataxia, anterograde amnesia, paradoxical excitement, hypomania, and birth defects. Overwhelmingly, participants in this study stated that addiction to alprazolam occurred as early as initial consumption and that their second alprazolam event occurred during the same or next day. Youth identified aggressive behavior, extreme composure, memory loss, and excessive need for the drug as indicators of alprazolam addiction. These findings suggest that adolescents believe that addiction to alprazolam is almost immediate; thus, it is important for researchers to understand the extent to which addiction is self-identified. The majority of the youth interviewed also stated that alprazolam is popular because of its euphoric effect, self-medicating properties, peer pressure, and relatively inexpensive cost. They also believed that if a user wanted to stop, it would be difficult because of the widespread use in their communities and peer and family pressure involved with its use. Adverse effects of alprazolam were overshadowed by its use as an inexpensive form of stress relief in the course of coping with various demands. Of 103 inpatient drug treatment clients, 46 self-identified as current alprazolam users and agreed to participate in the study. Sixty-seven percent were male; 46 percent were African-American; 41 percent were Hispanic; and 13 percent were White. They ranged in age from 15 to 18 years. Four focus groups were used to obtain participants' reports of their experiences with using alprazolam. 2 tables and 11 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile drug use
Index Term(s): Drug dependence; Drug effects; Juvenile drug treatment; Prescription drugs
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.