Is Drinking While On Antibiotics THAT Bad?


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When given medicine, you're always told NOT TO DRINK. I know i've always wondered why that is? I've been taught to believe that the alcohol will counteract the effectiveness of the antibiotic. Contrary to what most believe, for most common antibiotics alcohol DOES NOT counteract the effectiveness. However, there is still reason not to drink while on antibiotics. First, alcohol and antibiotics share many side effects (stomach ache, dizziness, and drowsiness) and when taken they can make the side effects even more severe. Some antibiotics can even cuse a reaction when mixed with alcohol like headache, nausea, and even vomiting. Second, drinking while on antibiotics may cause you to be sick for a LONGER time. Antibiotics are broken down in the liver, then excreted through urine and feces. The excretion route determines how long the drug is in your system. By drinking alcohol, it can mess with the excretion rate, causing the excretion rate to increase (the drug leaves your body before it should). Drinking may also slow down the rate drugs are being broken down, again causing you to be sick for longer. Moral of the story is, listen to your doctor, and DON'T DRINK WHILE ON ANTIBIOTICS!alcohol_antibiotics.jpg

2 Comments

I'm glad somebody wrote about this because today was actually my first day off of antibiotics and steroids. I was really sick and didn't want to go to the doctor because I was scared of being put on antibiotics and being told I couldn't drink. But I finally knew I had to go and they put me on antibiotics. It was especially hard because I felt better after a few days of the antibiotics and still had to be on them for a few more days - 10 days total. I heard a few people tell me that I would be fine if I drank on antibiotics, but I didn't want to risk it. I had been so sick that I didn't want to become sicker, and according to your post it would have made me sicker for longer. Overall, I'm glad I resisted the temptation.

This is really good to know. Most people, including me, don't realize the effects drinking can have on medication. According to this article, http://www.drinkaware.co.uk/alcohol-and-you/health/is-it-ok-to-drink-while-youre-on-medication, it is not healthy to drink while you are on any medications. It says that those who take medicine for illnesses such as depression and anxiety are worse off because alcohol itself is a depressant. Also people on long-term medication for any health reason should watch their drinking. Drinking can wear down the affectiveness of these medications.

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