Compare Xanax vs. oxazepam

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Xanax (alprazolam)

Prescription only

Serax (oxazepam)

Prescription only
Helps you relax.

Xanax (alprazolam) effectively treats occasional or short-term anxiety and panic attacks. Compared to similar drugs, it is more likely to cause withdrawal symptoms and can have more interactions with some medicines.

3.9/ 5 average rating with 1287 reviewsforXanax
Controls anxiety symptoms and alcohol withdrawal.

Serax (oxazepam) helps make sure the seizures that happen during alcohol withdrawal don't get worse. Serax (oxazepam) is also good for short-term relief of anxiety symptoms.

Upsides
  • Xanax (alprazolam) can be used to manage anxiety associated with depression.
  • Works very quickly - in hours.
  • Available in generic.
  • Serax (oxazepam) is a first choice medicine to treat seizures that can happen in alcohol withdrawal.
  • Serax (oxazepam) only lasts for a short time, so there's little risk of hangover effects or sleepiness.
  • Serax (oxazepam) is recommended for people who have advanced liver disease because it doesn't affect the liver.
Downsides
  • Use of Xanax (alprazolam) can cause memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion.
  • Xanax (alprazolam) can be habit-forming, so it's not typically used for long-term treatment.
  • Compared to other similar drugs, Xanax (alprazolam) is more likely to cause withdrawal symptoms if you take it for a long time and then stop suddenly.
  • If you have liver problems, Xanax (alprazolam) may not be the best choice since it is processed by the liver. Several drugs can also interfere with how Xanax (alprazolam) works. Talk to your doctor to see if Xanax (alprazolam) is right for you.
  • Serax (oxazepam) is addictive, so its use for anxiety should be limited to the shortest time possible.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Dissolving tablet
  • Liquid
  • Pill
Price
No pricing information available
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Reviews
1287 reviews so far
74%
saidit'sworth it
55%
saiditworked well
13%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Xanax (alprazolam)?

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Side effects
24possible side effects
  • Drowsiness
    41%
  • Lightheadedness
    21%
  • Dry mouth
    15%
  • Depression
    14%
  • Headache
    13%
  • Confusion
    10%
  • Constipation
    10%
  • Diarrhea
    10%
  • Nausea/vomiting
    10%
  • Difficulty sleeping
    9%
  • Fast heartbeat
    8%
  • Nasal congestion
    7%
  • Blurry vision
    6%
  • Low blood pressure
    5%
  • Nervousness
    4%
  • Increased salivation
    4%
  • Muscle rigidity
    4%
  • Tremor
    4%
  • Skin irritation/allergy
    4%
  • Fainting
    3%
  • Weight gain
    3%
  • Dizziness
    2%
  • Restlessness
    2%
  • Weight loss
    2%
See more detailed side effects
The Serax (oxazepam) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and risk factors
  • Decreased breathing from use with opioids
    • Taking Xanax (alprazolam) with opioids, drugs or alcohol
    • Using Xanax (alprazolam) for a longer duration and at high doses
  • Dependence and withdrawal
    • History of substance abuse
    • Taking with alcohol or drugs
    • Taking more than 4 mg/day or longer than 12 weeks
    • Stopping Xanax (alprazolam) suddenly
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • Severe depression
  • Driving impairment
    • Taking with alcohol or drugs
  • Drug interactions
    • Current liver problems
    • Taking medicines such as antifungals, cimetidine, or some HIV medicines
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Withdrawal symptoms
  • Breathing problems, coma, and death
    • Taking opioids
  • Low blood pressure
    • People age 65 or older
    • High blood pressure
  • Behavior changes
See more detailed risks and warnings