Common Alcohol & Drug Combinations

Alcohol and Energy Drinks/Caffeine:

When using Red Bull or Monster as a mixer or drinking pre-mixed drinks like Four Loko or Sparks, you are tricking your body into thinking it’s not tired. Your body is more intoxicated than you may feel, which can lead to alcohol poisoning. Energy drinks also increase dehydration which leads to hangovers the next day. Those who consumed both alcohol and caffeine were at least two times as likely -- compared to those drinking alcohol without caffeine -- to be hurt, need medical attention, take sexual advantage of another, or accept a ride with someone who was inebriated.

Alcohol and Adderall:

Adderall causes one to feel like they are not as drunk as they really are. This can lead to making very dangerous decisions since you are unaware of your level of intoxication. Because alcohol is a depressant and Adderall is a stimulant, drinking alcohol while taking Adderall can cause cardiac arrhythmias, and paranoid or psychotic reactions, on top of the risks of vomiting, dizziness, muscle twitching and headaches that are more likely to increase when mixed with alcohol.
When prescribed Adderall, patients are advised not to drink alcohol. The side-effects could be much more dangerous for students using Adderall without a prescription.

Alcohol and Painkillers:

Includes: Vicodin, Xanax, Oxycontin, Percocet, Demerol, Norco, etc.
Mixing painkillers with alcohol is dangerous. The mixture of these two substances can lead to intensified sedative effects and respiratory depression. Painkillers can lead to liver problems and disease when used recreationally, the mixture of this drug with alcohol can intensify these side-effects.

Alcohol and Marijuana:

Mixing these two substances can cause heavy vomiting, spins, very strong paranoia, decreased motor control and decreased mental concentration. Also, because marijuana suppresses the gag reflex, you may not be able to throw up alcohol when your body needs to.

Alcohol and Cocaine:

These two substances are commonly mixed with the thought that they cancel each other out; this is NOT TRUE. Combining cocaine and alcohol produces a high amount of a third unique substance, called cocaethylene. A high amount of cocaethylene in the body increases the already harmful risk of cardiovascular toxicity to a much higher extent than any other drug. Cardiovascular toxicity causes pressure and stress on the heart.

Alcohol and Heroin:

Each of these substances alone causes depression of the central nervous system, so the mixture of the two is extremely dangerous and has been proven to be fatal.

Alcohol and Ecstasy:

It is very well known that one should never mix ecstasy with any other drug substance, especially alcohol. It is known that most ecstasy related deaths have been due to the mixture of alcohol with the drug. When the two are mixed the alcohol reduces the feeling of the ecstasy’s high and puts a much greater strain on the kidneys. Also, dehydration caused by drinking alcohol occurs more rapidly when on ecstasy.

Alcohol and LSD/Acid:

Alcohol is mixed with LSD to take down or slow down the effects and relax. However, more commonly combining alcohol can make the comedown of the drug much worse with extreme nausea and vomiting.

Alcohol and Mushrooms:

Mushrooms or "Shrooms" are a psychedelic and are not meant to ever be taken with any other drugs. The mixture of alcohol and shrooms is usually to help take away the effect and high of the shrooms because alcohol is a depressant. However, the intended outcome is not a guarantee and side-effects include nausea and vomiting.

Alcohol and Amphetamines:

Amphetamines alone are very risky because of the strain on the heart and the increase in blood pressure. When mixing alcohol with amphetamines side-effects can become much more serious. Consuming alcohol while taking amphetamines can make someone act very aggressive and irresponsible; it is extremely harmful to the kidneys and intensifies hangover effects.

Alcohol and Antibiotics:

It is important to always read the labels on prescription medications and adhere to the warnings about alcohol intake. Drinking alcohol while on antibiotics can cause nausea, dizziness, vomiting, fatigue and in some cases convulsions, immense headache, flushing, rapid heart rate and shortness of breath. Since antibiotics and alcohol are both broken down through the liver the combination of these substances can result in liver damage. This combination also diminishes the effects of the antibiotics you are taking. Try to focus on getting healthy again. You’ll probably enjoy drinking more once you’re healthy anyway.

Alcohol and Antidepressants:

Combining alcohol with antidepressants (Zoloft, Prozac, etc.) can cause an increased response to alcohol -- For example, having one drink might feel like two. Also, the combination might create unexpected emotions and inhibit the antidepressant from doing what it's supposed to do. If it is a new prescription, try it out without drinking alcohol so you are familiar with your body's reaction first and then consult your doctor if any problems occur.

Alcohol and Antihistamines:

Drinking alcohol while taking antihistamines can cause a less effective outcome of the medication. Your body will choose to metabolize the alcohol before the antihistamines. Labels typically suggest you stay away from alcohol all together when on antihistamines so it is very important to always check any label on the drug.

Alcohol and Birth Control Pills:

Birth control pills take three full hours to get into your blood stream and be effective. If you vomit due to drinking or any other causes before that three hour window, the effectiveness of birth control pills is diminished. Mixing alcohol and birth control can make some people feel nauseous, which can cause vomiting.

Also, some women feel drunk quicker when on the pill since their bodies are metabolizing the hormones of the pill making it more difficult to metabolize the ethanol in alcohol. Plus, drinking can interfere with remembering to take your pill at the same time, which also increases the chances of pregnancy.