Because people don't seem to think its a big deal to drink while taking one or more Psych Medications at the same time when being treated for BiPolar Disorder.....
Alcohol is a Depressant, from the minute you take your first drink you're making your Anti-Depressant less effective. Depending on what you're drinking, depends on how quickly you put yourself in danger and how much danger you do....
Beer has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of 2% - 12%
Wine ABV of 12% - 14%
Liquor (Rum, Tequila) ABV of 40% - 60%
Whiskey ABV of 40% - 50%
Vodka ABV of 60% - 85%
Depending on what your mixed drink or shot or straight drink is, you cause yourself harm faster than you realize. Most BP'ers are on an Anti-Depressant, and a Mood Stabilizer, which is an Anti-Psychotic or Anti-Seizure med. Many are also on an Anti-Anxiety med and some type of Sleeping aid and often other medications. When you add Alcohol to these medications you have increased drowziness, extreme low blood pressure, loss of coordination, increased anger and aggression and increased CNS depression....your tolerance for alcohol becomes increased creating a false sense of control.
Anti-anxiety meds and Alcohol are both CNS (central nervous system) depressants. This causes increased drowsines as well as depressed breathing and heart rate. Because both Anti-Anxiety meds and alcohol are consumed orally, it's also a concern that this slower method of metabolizing these substances can compound the risks of side effects over time, as more of the drugs enter the individual’s bloodstream.
The biggest danger of mixing alcohol and Anti-Anxiety meds is that these drugs enhance each other’s intoxicating effects. In even small doses, this means that when consumed together they cause a level of sleepiness to a point where the person can be so difficult to wake up, it could lead to coma.
Drinking Alcohol and taking Anti-Depressants causes you to feel more anxious and depressed, it also amplifies the drowziness side effects of most anti-depressant medications. Since Alcohol is a depressant, your Anti-Depressant medication becomes ineffective when your drinking and once the medication gets off track in your system, you then play catch up the following days to get your system back to the stable chemical balance in your bloodstream.
Drinking Alcohol and taking any kind of Hypnotic class sleep medication, and yes that means going out drinking, then going home and taking your sleep meds and going to bed, causes severly increased physical and cognitive impairment.
Its not rocket science, we have a Mental Illness and we take very strong Psychiatric medication to control that Illness, it's not a choice and everyone would change it if we could. But, choosing to treat that Illness comes with a Responsibility and that means being a grown up and knowing that drinking Alcohol while taking these meds is dangerous and cannot only cause you serious harm but others around you. You can go out and have a good time without drinking, people do it everyday.....its the safe, responsible thing to do. Call me preachy, yell at me, whatever....I still luvs ya. Somebody needs to point this out and I have a thick skin. Seriously though, it's just meant as education, because I do love all my peeps on here and I don't want to see anyone get hurt.
I hope that everyone stays safe, at peace, and enjoys life sober!!!
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