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Avatar universal

Alcohol and Meds

So what exactly happens when you drink while taking an antipsychotic?  Is there some long term danger it is going to cause?  Is it going to worsen my mental illness?  I drank basically two cans of beer the other day and I'm taking Abilify and it didn't seem to cause any problems or intensify the effects of both but I have no idea what it is doing to my body in the long run.  I'm hoping there is some kind of long term damage or hidden damage it is causing to try to give me something to hold on to in my quest to beat alcoholism because immediate adverse effects isn't going to slow down my drinking.
8 Responses
Avatar universal
And I meant "no immediate adverse effects isn't going to slow down my drinking" but for some reason the no disappeared after I hit post.
585414 tn?1288944902
  The specific interaction between an antipsychotic and alcohol will make the antipsychotic less functional. I am not sure if the effect is long term. The effect of alcohol itself depends on what is a safe amount for a person to drink a day and that varies by body weight. However, alcoholism in general will set back a person's recovery because its some form of self medication. I do know that my natural father had alcoholism and that worsened his recovery rate as regards what was probably schizoaffective (at that time the criteria was unknown, his diagnosis was "borderline schizophrenia" was doesn't exist anymore) and he eventually died in an alcohol related accident. My stepfather was a heavy drinker (his death was from a heart attack, that was due to smoking but that's another issue) and he may have had bipolar with psychotic features (we can't know what happenned retroactively but he did talk to himself and go on grandiose rants). Both of them would have been better off without alcohol but not everyone is affected in that extreme manner. In knowing I may have inherited the genes I never drank to begin with although I know some people can.
  Rather than try to find some form of harm which may or may not happen, the best thing to do is go to a dual recovery group for a person with a psychiatric disability and an issue with alcoholism. I do have a friend who attends groups like that and every time he gets back into drinking eventually it worsens his judgment and how his medication works and he has to go to the psych. hospital but each person is affected differently. Best to speak to other people who have the same experience.
Avatar universal
Hello Corlen,
It's very brave and a giant step you've taken  to admit you have an alcohol addiction first of all and I commend you for that.
Corlen, you do not want to cause harm or injury to yourself or another person I am sure.
Have you thought about yourself as the human being that is deserving of a happy and healthy life because you are just that Corlen; you deserve happiness and the chance to achieve it which you can and will.
Getting the help and especially support of others who have been through what you're experiencing will help you I am sure as long as you are determined to want to also which I believe you are just by making this post.
Please take ILADVOCATES advice also into consideration.
Corlen has a brain and a body that goes with it and he knows this too.
Corlen has people, family, friends who love him and care about him and want and need him around for a long time to come.
I feel I am your friend Corlen although we've never actually met in person, but I still am your friend and I do care about you and your well being so imagine those you know and love in real or actual life and think here; please take some long, hard time to think serioulsy about this matter because if anyone can do this; it is you Corlen.
This is when I wish I could reach into the computer and what; what shall I do???
Not being dramatic here, I'm very serious Corlen; please believe me.
I know of people in my life who have succeeded in beating their alcohol addiction/drug addictions and manage their other problems as well.
It may seem insurmountable when faced with all of this, but you take one thing at a time and you will succeed.
There is alot of support and help for those with such problems and you should take advantage of it starting as soon as possible.
You'll meet nice, kind, compassionate, giving, caring, helpful and supportive people who sincerely will help you in every way they can.
I know of AA only, but ILADS suggestion is good.
Thank you corlen for sharing and asking about this; it took alot and was again a  first step for you.
Do it for you because you deserve it Corlen.
Your Friend,
Avatar universal
I forgot something too.
Meds of any kind and alcohol do not mix for good reasons.
We all react differently if mixing the 2 together, but there can be many serious consequences such as overdose, stroke, heartattack  seizures and death among just some to list when mixing the 2 together even in small quanities.
Just don't do it.
Avatar universal
I am actually attending a group for this dual recovery thing at PACT.  One thing I found that helped a lot was focusing only on negative aspects of alcohol but I lost that way of thinking when I got stressed and haven't gotten it back yet instead of only focusing on the positive aspects of it.  Without the immediate adverse reaction I lost some of the negative things I could think about it with.  Thanks for sharing all that experience you've had with people who have alcoholism and encouragement.  I agree with you that they would have been better off without alcohol, I think this is true for everyone because of how it can spiral out of control and get worse.

bluetray1 -
Well I already took the step to start recovery from this, this question was kind of a maintenance question to my recovery of sorts.  I don't even know why I drink really except I have the urge to and like it when I'm drunk.  Me and my therapist figured out I wasn't feeling happy ever because I'm quite honestly scared of the prospect with how much I've been abused in my life and I used to drink to feel pseudo-happy since the drinking reduced this inhibition.  Also Thanks for your words of encouragement and information.  I have lowered my guard and feel happy sometimes but the person who makes me happy can be really unstable so I'm still scared of it honestly.  I was so guarded for a while from feeling happy that drinking wouldn't even lower my guard.

Both -
You would think it upsetting my girlfriend a lot and my dad actually dying from drinking so much his nervous system shut down would be enough to detour me but it doesn't.  She got really upset about it every time and yet here I still am planning in my head the next time I'm going to do it.  They were trying to get me to go to AA at the chemical dependency group but so far I haven't been able to go with anyone yet.  I'm guessing my dad also drank while taking psych meds because I know he took some.
Avatar universal
Hi corlen,
i am very, very sorry about the abuse you had to endure corlen; noone should ever be subjected to it in any way; I truly am sorry you suffered so much.
you will be okay though I know.
thanks for writing back and sharing so much again and i'm happy, very happy that you've taken a big step with PACT; it's very good and uplifiting news to learn.
you should be really happy with yourself for doing this and proud also; continue on and just go slow.
I hope that PACT will work for you and that they have support there; perhaps someone to keep an eye on you so to speak like a buddy system of sorts.
Stay well and just go slow.  
Not so hard to believe anything though corlen; we're just humans doing our best and trying to be happy....in our quests, whatever they may be.
I understand though about not wanting to get your hopes up about being happy, we all do it in our lives...ups and downs in life though, but hopefully there will be more ups for you to come.  take all the happiness you can feel and never regret it; you deserve it.
Hope pact works out for you and congratulations on this too Corlen...very good move on your part.
675718 tn?1530036633
don't mix ......... bad idea
Avatar universal
Well I think everyone experiences abuse at least at one point or another, that's just the way the cookie crumbles.  I just experienced too much of it but that was the way the cards were dealt.  PACT keeps an eye on me, they are an intensive care in the community sort of thing, it's actually been shown they lower hospitalization rates and I think of them more as friends than people treating me with the way they interact with us.
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