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Stop The Presses: Xanax Sales Tend To Pick Up During The Holiday Season

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Stop The Presses: Xanax Sales Tend To Pick Up During The Holiday Season

The holiday season can be an exciting and fulfilling time of year for people to disrupt their standard routines and spend time reflecting with family and friends. Unfortunately, for many Americans, the holiday season is instead be filled with stress, anxiety and depression.

From a psychological standpoint, the holidays can be a perfect storm of unrealistic expectations, unrelenting commitments and financial pressures. There is even a name for a specific type of depression that occurs during the fall and winter months: seasonal affective disorder (SAD). SAD is believed to be more closely tied to the weather (colder and shorter days) than to the holidays, but it certainly compounds holiday stress for those afflicted by the condition.

Considering all the negative mental health implications that the holiday season can bring, perhaps it’s no coincidence that Q4 is typically the strongest time of the year for sales of top Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) drug Xanax.

Xanax is used to treat anxiety disorders, panic disorders and anxiety caused by depression.

Xanax Sales Soar Amid SAD, Compounded Holiday Anxieties

According to Pfizer’s filings, Xanax sales have been 3.4 percent higher in Q4 than in Q3 over the past five years.

In 2015, Xanax sales were up 9.0 percent in Q4 compared to Q3.

While Q4 Xanax sales remain seasonally elevated compared to Q3 sales, Q4 Xanax sales have declined year-over-year by an average of 4.9 percent since 2011.

Perhaps Americans are learning better ways to cope with holiday stress and depression. However, people may simply be choosing Xanax alternatives, such as Valium.

In addition, newly-legalized recreational and/or medical marijuana, another common treatment for depression and anxiety, may be eating into Xanax sales as well.

Image Credit: By Gotgot44 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

 

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