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Doxycycline and Alcohol: Should They Be Mixed?

Doxycycline PillsDoxycycline is a broad-spectrum antibiotic included in the class of antibiotics known as tetracyclines. It is used to treat a wide range of infections caused by bacteria or protozoa. These include acne, chest, skin, and certain eye infections; sexually transmitted infections (STIs); infections spread by insects; contaminated food and water; pneumonia and other respiratory tract infections; malaria, and even anthrax.

However, there is actually no danger warning against taking doxycycline with alcohol, as many patients are quick to point out.To counter this, it should also be pointed out that there is no doxycycline-based treatment that prescribes washing down the antibiotic with alcohol.

Logic will suggest that a strong psychoactive substance like alcohol will probably prevent you from getting the desired effect of this antibiotic.

Simply put, doxycycline and alcohol just don’t go together.

Talk to Your Doctor

Technically speaking, drinking a glass or two of wine or a can or two of beer while being medicated with doxycycline would have little effect. Take note, however, that it’s not risk-free.

There would only be two possible reasons that a doctor would not reprimand you for even asking if it’s okay to drink alcohol with doxycycline. One is that he is a fan of the drink himself and is fooling himself by downgrading its negative effects. And two is that he’s telling you things you want to hear.  Either way, it’s probably best to change doctors.

Of course, your doctor could probably up your dosage, so you can still get the maximum effect of doxycycline.

Look for that doctor who will tell you to drink water or fruit juice for that one week instead, that is generally the duration for taking antibiotics. You can give your liver a rest for a couple of days.

Doxycycline and Alcohol

Yes, there is no direct warning to not take alcohol while taking doxycycline. But it is still an antibiotic and all medicines, in general, should not be consumed with alcohol.

For example, some studies have shown that doxycycline increases motor-impairment, which is one of the effects of alcohol even if there is no significant change in your blood alcohol levels.

Chronic alcohol abuse and doxycycline overdose can have grave effects on the different organs of your body, such as your brain, heart, pancreas, and especially the liver. Taking the two substances together may also worsen the side effects that they have in common, including:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Dizziness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
  • Rashes
  • Fatigue
  • Slower reflexes and decreased cognitive abilities
  • Liver damage

Taking alcohol with doxycycline is not as dangerous as taking alcohol with other antibiotics. Even doctors will say that taking a drink or two can only bring about a minimal effect. Still, it can perceivably make the antibiotic less effective, especially if you’re still starting your medication cycle and especially if you drink in excess in the first place. This is because alcohol leads to decreased functioning of your immune system.

Another reason for not taking the two substances together is that in the case of an unforeseen negative effect, having alcohol in the system will make it hard for the doctors to isolate what is causing the problem. Is it the alcohol? Is it the doxycycline? Or is it the combination of the two substances.

Really, the safest recourse is to refrain from drinking anything alcoholic while you are under medication for doxycycline. If you find yourself unable to do this, then maybe it is time to test yourself to see if you are an alcoholic, or maybe even get help from a luxury drug and alcohol addiction treatment center like Chapters Capistrano.