Author: Charles Frank

The Dangers of Mixing Alcohol with Valium Diazepam

valium and alcohol

Abusing the two substances can also result in various behavioral or social problems, such as depression and alienation from family. In some cases, those who abuse these substances experience problems with work and finances as well. For instance, some can interfere with how well a drug works, while others can cause increased side effects. People often combine the two substances to enhance the effects of Valium, unaware of the risks. Mixing these two substances is never recommended because, in addition to the many health risks (listed below), it can be fatal. Phenytoin, phenobarbital, and carbamazepine also affect the enzyme that breaks down diazepam.

This type of coping has potential to lead to dependence, tolerance, lack of control, and co-occurring disorders. Valium is the most common brand name of diazepam, which belongs to a drug class called benzodiazepines. These depressant are most commonly used to treat anxiety, insomnia, panic disorders, and muscle spasms. When dosage is being supervised by a physician, Valium can be also be a safe way to manage some of the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. Several other drugs can be dangerous for the same reason that Valium is when mixed with alcohol.

Another potentially dangerous complication is the aspiration of vomit. Since alcohol and Valium overdose can cause nausea and a loss of consciousness, you may be at risk of vomiting while you’re asleep and aspirating it. If someone is with you when this happens, they may be able to intervene by helping you to sit up or roll to your side. Once alcohol is in your brain, it affects your nervous system in several ways. However, despite thousands of years of drinking alcohol, researchers don’t know exactly how it works in the brain. The main way it is thought to affect the brain is to interact with a naturally occurring chemical called gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA).

valium and alcohol

The more criteria you meet, the more severe your condition, making more crucial the need for changes in your life. Don’t take this drug again if you’ve had an allergic reaction to it before. Taking it a second time after an allergic reaction could be fatal. The risks of withdrawal are greater if you’ve been taking diazepam for a long time.

Dosage for acute alcohol withdrawal

The standard dosage is 2 mg to 10 mg taken by mouth three or four times per day. This drug hasn’t been studied in children and shouldn’t be used in children under the age of 6 months. The standard dosage is 2 mg to 10 mg taken by mouth two to four times per day. Typically, your doctor will start you on a low dosage and adjust it over time to reach the dosage that’s right for you. They’ll ultimately prescribe the smallest dosage that provides the desired effect.

valium and alcohol

Depressants like Valium and alcohol can slow down your breathing by slowing nervous system activity relating to important automatic functions in your body. Slowed or stopped breathing can happen during heavy sedation or unconsciousness without you realizing it. During a fatal depressant overdose, respiratory depression is often the cause of death. In such instances, medical detox can be a huge help during this early stage of recovery. Alcohol is potentially dangerous when mixed with a variety of substances. Any drug that is potentially harmful to your liver may be dangerous when mixed with alcohol.

Anxiety drugs

In some cases, they may not be available in every strength or form as the brand-name version. Addiction, in general, is a chronic and progressive condition that can affect multiple areas of your life, including your physical health, mental health, relationships, and finances. Valium, like other benzodiazepines, is thought to work in a similar way. Unlike alcohol, Valium has been found to bind to nerve cells on GABA receptors. Once it’s bound to the receptor, Valium also affects these negative ion channels to achieve some of the same effects as alcohol.

  1. In fact, there are people who make it their life’s work to help others recover from addiction.
  2. The powerful sedating effects will make it difficult to stay awake, move, or even speak.
  3. That’s why some people are able leave substances alone, while others are not.

It’s different taking Valium after alcohol because alcohol is out of the system at a relatively fast rate. Generally, it takes your body about 1 hour to process 1 standard alcoholic drink. For someone with a slower metabolism, alcohol might be in their system longer. The previously mentioned time frame of alcohol metabolism can also vary based on a person’s weight, age, amount consumed, and height. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) outlines the criteria for the diagnosis of alcohol use disorder. To receive this diagnosis, you must meet at least 2 of the 11 diagnostic criteria over the course of a 12-month period.

Important considerations for taking diazepam

GABA is closely tied to relaxation, anxiety management, and sleep, and it works by opening a channel in your nerve cells to let in negative ions. This negative charge shuts down certain activities and has the overall effect of allowing you to rest and digest. Alcohol may have an effect on these channels to enhance the effect of GABA. In chemistry, alcohol is a broad term that can refer to many different kinds of chemicals, most of which would kill you if you drank them. The kind of alcohol you can drink is called ethyl alcohol, or ethanol. Humans may have adapted to be able to drink alcohol because it’s naturally produced by plants and fruit that we eat through fermentation.

Your doctor will regularly reassess your condition to see if diazepam is still appropriate for you to take. You’ll soon start receiving the latest Mayo Clinic health information you requested in your inbox. It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child at regular visits to see if the medicine is working properly. You can receive 24/7 text support right away and at your convenience. There is no obligation to enter treatment and you can opt out at any time. Call now to talk with a treatment specialist about your recovery options.

Since alcohol is also a central nervous system depressant, the two drugs have some similar effects. Valium may cause some effects that are similar to alcohol intoxication, lowering inhibitions, making you feel relaxed, and causing impairment of your motor skills, cognition, and memory. Because Valium can cause these effects, it’s sometimes used as a recreational drug.

Polydrug use is common, especially among people who use drugs recreationally. Settings in which drugs are being used to achieve an intoxicating high may have more than one substance available. Polydrug use may also be common among people who experience drug overdoses.

Mixing Klonopin with Alcohol

Dependence occurs because your brain adapts to the presence of these chemicals. Benzodiazepines are central nervous system depressants that were first introduced in the 1960s and became some of the most popular prescription drugs in the 1970s. Today they’re used to treat anxiety, insomnia, seizures, and muscle spasms. Valium can be used to treat all of these problems, and it’s also used to treat restless leg syndrome.

Actually, it’s dangerous to mix Valium and alcohol because they have similar effects. When you take two or more drugs that have similar effects on your brain and body, it can do something called potentiation. Potentiation is when drugs combine to cause more intense effects than they normally would because they are both working on your brain in similar ways. Keep in mind that no matter what, it isn’t safe to mix substances, and if you’re having a hard time stopping, there’s a help.

This hotline is also useful for loved ones of people suffering from addiction. One of the best ways to ensure your safety is to take an active approach towards recovery. There are a lot of different addiction treatments that help people overcome the mental and physical addictions caused by Valium and alcohol. Not everyone mixes alcohol with Valium to intensify the effects of each drug—sometimes it happens by accident. If it is on purpose, it might be easier to understand why they did it, if you know more about their background.