Will drinking while taking Amoxicillin cause adverse effects on your health?
Amoxicillin, which appears on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, is among the most commonly prescribed drugs to treat infections in the United States.
Its most well-known brands in the US include:
Statistics show that there were 28,701,204 prescriptions in 2015 alone. It has been widely used since the early 1980s to treat pleural, bronchopulmonary, and ENT infections. There are two forms of Amoxicillin – the sterile sodium amoxicillin which is used in injectable medications and the Amoxicillin trihydrate, which is used for oral medications. The injectable form of Amoxicillin is usually prescribed to patients who cannot take the oral form. For oral dosage forms, Amoxicillin comes in tablets, chewable tablets, the powder used for suspension, extended-release tablets, and capsules.
Amoxicillin is available only with a prescription from a doctor. The drug, which belongs to penicillin antibiotics medicines, is used with other drugs, such as lansoprazole and clarithromycin, to treat bacterial infections such as duodenal ulcers and H. pylori infection.
However, even with its popularity in the treatment of infections, most people are still wondering whether it is safe to take Amoxicillin with alcohol.
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Is it Safe to Drink Alcohol While Taking Amoxicillin?
Generally, mixing alcohol with drugs, whether illegal or prescribed, is not good for the body. That’s one reason why warning labels on drug bottles include a caution to not combine drugs with alcohol.
The combination of alcohol and Amoxicillin will cause side effects that are uncomfortable for the patient who has been prescribed with Amoxicillin to treat an infection. The most important risk is that alcohol can reduce the efficiency of the drug. The body has enzymes which break down both drugs and alcohol. But too much alcohol in the body results in the inhibition of the enzymes. This effect slows down the rate that the drug is broken down.
Amoxicillin is used to treat infections from various diseases. So when the effect of Amoxicillin is slowed down, the treatment of the disease gets delayed and the infection is unnecessarily prolonged. Alcohol alone can make people feel weak and its abuse can be fatal.
Mixing alcohol and Amoxicillin is not fatal when not taken in large doses. But patients should remember that alcohol alone can be fatal when consumed in excess. Meanwhile, patients who are prescribed with Amoxicillin should also check whether he or she has an allergy to penicillin.
The Side Effects of Taking Amoxicillin with Alcohol
There are numerous side effects when taking Amoxicillin and alcohol at the same time. These undesirable side effects include:
- Abdominal pain
- Flushed skin
- Chest pain due to difficulty breathing
- Increased heart rate
Amoxicillin alone can have some serious side effects, including jaundice, muscle pain, swollen glands, and unusual bleeding of the anus, nose, and mouth. Meanwhile, alcohol alone causes side effects and leads to a lot of health problems when consumed in excess. Alcohol abuse is linked to 88,000 deaths annually, according to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc.
When a patient takes alcohol with Amoxicillin, these common side effects could be worsened. These side effects will further prolong the body’s recuperation process to deal with the infection and heal. It might not be life-threatening, but the healing of the infection might worsen when the Amoxicillin’s effectivity is hampered by alcohol.
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Alcohol Consumption: When Do We Say It’s Too Much?
While people drink to relax and celebrate, people taking Amoxicillin should refuse to drink to allow his or her body to recuperate fully from an infection. When a person consumes large doses of alcohol despite being under medication treatment, including Amoxicillin, it could be a sign of alcohol abuse.
Whether the person is consuming wine or beer, drinking while taking medication has adverse effects on the body. If the person finds the urge to drink as uncontrollable, he might be faced with a more serious problem of alcoholism.
A patient should remember that consuming alcohol causes nausea and dehydration. It also causes vomiting, which could worsen the side effects of Amoxicillin. When doctors prescribe Amoxicillin, they advise patients to avoid drinking alcohol because alcohol will affect the drug effectiveness.
Patients should carefully read the labels of medicines to make sure that they know its effects when taken with other medicines and/or alcohol. Most importantly, those who suffer from alcohol use disorder should immediately inform their medical providers before they are prescribed with an antibiotic medicine, including Amoxicillin. This will ensure that the doctor can help the patient take the medication safely and properly.
Want more information about how Chapters Capistrano can help? Feel free to call 949-371-4198 and one of our addiction specialists will help get the information and help you need.