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Effects of Combining Alcohol with Other Drugs

Discussion in 'Alcohol' started by darkrebelchild, Mar 31, 2016.

  1. darkrebelchild

    darkrebelchild Community Champion

    Combining medications (prescribed or not prescribed) with alcohol can have unpredictable and unwanted consequences. We can help ourselves, our friends and our community by understanding the dangers and taking steps to prevent harm.

    Depressants (Xanax, Valium) combined with alcohol have a synergistic effect, with potential for dangerous and even lethal consequences, with rapid onset of dizziness, stumbling, loss of sphincter control, memory loss and potential death.

    Stimulants (e.g., Ritalin, Adderall, Concerta) combined with alcohol conceal alcohol’s effects, so people cannot gauge their level of intoxication, which can result in over-consumption, e.g. significant impairment of coordination and judgment, black out, pass out and potential death.

    Prescription opiates (e.g., Vicodin, OxyContin, Tylenol 3 with codeine, Percocet) combined with alcohol can result in slowed or arrested breathing, lowered pulse and blood pressure, unconsciousness, coma, and potential death.

    Note: It is illegal to misuse prescription medication, that is:

    • Continue to use medication when the prescription is no longer valid
    • Use prescribed drugs contrary to the prescription
    • Use prescription drugs not prescribed to you
    • Give or sell prescribed drugs to another person
    Misusing prescription drugs can result in conviction with jail time.

    Potential harm can happen in three ways:
    • When people do not know that there are significant drug interactions and are caught by surprise when they inadvertently drink while using prescription medication
    • When people knowingly combine alcohol with other drugs because they mistakenly believe it will be a “better” or “enriched” intoxication
    • As a tool to facilitate a crime (sexual assault, robbery, etc) by making a victim incapacitated
    If you choose to drink:

    • Make your own drink whenever possible, and don’t leave your drink unattended
    • If you don’t see your drink being made, don't drink it
    • Avoid drinks that come from a common source (e.g. punch bowl, igloo container, jug)
    Stay safe, Go Blue, and Stay in the Blue.

    Source: Student Life, University Health Service. University of Michigan
    Mara likes this.
  2. Tremmie

    Tremmie Community Champion

    Since I was a little girl my mom warned me about the dangers of mixing alcohol and medications. She told me I could die if I ever tried. I'm glad she told me, because I believe that fear she instilled in me early on is what stopped me from trying a lot things I would have surely tried if I had no idea how dangerous they were.
  3. djolem

    djolem Senior Contributor

    I know for diazepam that it is not advisable to use with alcohol. I have a brother who was a heroin addict and after he was hospitalised for some six months he quit heroin but he needed something else to kill the pain because it is not easy to quit heroin. I know that he drank a bottle of strong liquor with handful of diazepams every other night. Now he is quite okay with marijuana. But his behaviour on this combination was much worse than heroin behaviour.
  4. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    Those are very useful information and warnings. I agree that it is really dangerous to combine alcohol with medications and even combining medications with other medication can be dangerous as well. Better not to attempt doing that and right that do not leave your drinks unattended in public places.
  5. puneeth8994

    puneeth8994 Active Contributor

    It is usually not wise to mix drugs as the effects vary at a huge scale from person to person. I'm used to combining alcohol with cigarettes and marijuana but it all depends your body's tolerance.
  6. serenity

    serenity Community Champion

    Prescription drugs are really dangerous to combine with alcohol, so good thing that you posted this info here. They can cause potential death, so people should be aware of this info.
  7. Mara

    Mara Community Champion

    My older cousins used to combine alcohol with other drugs. And to tell you the truth, I'm surprised that they're still alive to this day. They've been using drugs since they were teenagers. They smoked marijuana, drank cough syrups, and then drank beer. Now, they're in their late forties and have shifted to meth.
  8. henry

    henry Community Champion

    To me, the worst combination was mixing diazepam with booze. You think you're all right, but your balance sure goes out the window. I can't tell you how many times I fell on the floor. Really dangerous.