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The Dangers of Drinking While Taking Prozac

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You will experience a more sedative effect if you combine Prozac with alcohol

The desire to relax with a cold beer or a large glass of cabernet is widespread. However, even if you only have one or two drinks per day while taking Prozac® (or generic Fluoxetine), you might want to take a break from that adult beverage. 

Prozac, an SSRI or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, is licensed to treat bulimia, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, major depressive disorder, and depression.

It is common for someone who is depressed to use alcohol as self-medication. Typically, drinking alcohol is done to relax and change your mood. Alcohol and Prozac do not mix well and can harm depressive symptoms to the patient’s ability to recover if taken at the same time.

Prozac: How Does It Work?

As previously stated, Fluoxetine, a generic variant of Prozac, is an SSRI. Serotonin, a neurotransmitter, is blocked from reabsorption into neurons by this sort of drug.

This indicates that serotonin activity in your brain is increasing. Sertraline (Zoloft®), citalopram (Celexa®), paroxetine (Paxil®), and escitalopram (Lexapro®) are other SSRI antidepressant drug classes.

So why do SSRIs aid those who are depressed? 

Serotonin is essential for controlling behavior and mood. Tablets, delayed-release capsules, liquid, and capsules are all forms in which Fluoxetine is sold.

Your healthcare practitioner may start you on a low dose and gradually raise it to reduce any short-term common side effects of alcohol, as is familiar with many drugs used to treat mental health effects and major depressive disorders.

The observation could take a few weeks to see Prozac’s benefits, so it’s crucial to keep taking the medication even when you do. Your previous symptoms may return along with withdrawal symptoms if you stop suddenly.

What Is the Use of Prozac?

Over 16 million Americans experience depression yearly, which is rising in the country. One in six persons will go from depression at some point in their lives. Regardless of age, ethnicity, or gender, anyone is prone to developing this mental health condition. 

Antidepressant medication can be recommended if you experience depression and seek treatment options to stabilize and improve your mood by motor skills.

There are several indicators and symptoms of depression, such as but not limited to:

  • Persistent melancholy, anxiety, or emptiness
  • Feeling powerless, miserable, or unworthy
  • Irritability
  • Low energy or weariness
  • Thoughts of or attempts at suicide

Symptoms of Prozac

There are specific known severe side effects of Prozac, just like with other medicine. Many of these adverse effects disappear as much as your body adjusts to the drug.

Common severe side effects include the following:

  • Nervousness
  • Anxiety
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • mouth ache
  • Heartburn
  • Loss of weight
  • alterations in sex drive
  • excessive perspiration
  • suicidal thoughts

Some similar effects may be a sign of a more severe condition. If you experience any of the following adverse effects, seek immediate medical attention: 

  • Blisters, hives, or rashes
  • Itching
  • Fever
  • Aching joints
  • Swelling
  • Breathing or swallowing challenges
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Fainting
  • Seizures
  • Abnormal heartbeat
  • Irregular breathing

Is Drinking Safe While Taking Prozac?

Because of the possibility of drug interactions, the United States U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suggests avoiding alcohol abuse consumption when taking Prozac or generic Fluoxetine.

As you now understand, Fluoxetine works by raising the brain’s serotonin levels. Similarly, it has been demonstrated that one of alcohol’s similar effects is to boost serotonin levels, which may exacerbate Fluoxetine’s adverse effects.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness also cautions that drinking alcohol and taking antidepressants combined can have an increased risk or tendency to cause drowsiness, which is one of the adverse consequences.

Drinking Without Taking Your Dose

It’s crucial to take Prozac (or the generic form, Fluoxetine) precisely as directed, which includes not skipping doses.

Missing a dose can make it more likely that you will experience symptoms once more. Additionally, quickly discontinuing Prozac might cause withdrawal symptoms like nausea and vertigo.

The Last Word on Alcohol and Prozac

Even though we all know what it’s like to have a yearning for alcohol on a Friday afternoon, it’s probably not a good idea if you’re taking Prozac. Choose a non-alcoholic beverage if you’ve been asked to a meal where wine may be offered or if you’re out with pals. 

Contact a medical expert and consult medical advice before discontinuing Prozac or talking about drinking while taking it if you have the urge to do either. You may read our post on Prozac and alcohol addiction to learn more about yet another possible interaction.

Steps To Take

There are some steps to avoid drinking alcohol while taking Prozac. Your health could be at risk if you combine the two. Discuss your feelings with your doctor if you experience frequent impulses to drink.

There’s good news if you’re trying to limit your alcohol consumption. According to a review in American Family Physician, the generic drug Prozac, known by the brand name Fluoxetine, may aid alcohol-dependent individuals in quitting drinking. Prozac shouldn’t be used to treat alcoholism, despite this. 

It’s vital to remember that even if you don’t drink right away while on Prozac, the effects of doing so can still occur. A long time passes after you stop using Prozac because it is a long-term drug. You won’t minimize your risk of common serious side effects by delaying drinking for a few hours after taking medicine. 

The dosage and duration of the medication’s use affect how long it lingers in your system. After taking your final dose of some drug types, your body may continue to experience its effects for up to two weeks.

Seek Assistance and Heed Warning Signs

People’s likelihood of becoming dependent on alcohol rises if they take an antidepressant and find themselves drinking. Simultaneous treatment of depression, a dual diagnosis, is required when an alcohol use disorder (AUD) and a mental disease co-occur. It is feasible for people to cure depression and drinking simultaneously.

Alcohol should be avoided when taking Prozac due to safety concerns, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Trusted Source. A small amount of alcohol substance abuse might cause harmful reactions, so keep that in mind and ask our support groups before using it. Alcohol shouldn’t be consumed at all while taking Prozac.

We provide tailored treatment plans at The Recovery Team to achieve long-term recovery. Our drug addiction treatment partial hospitalization program (PHP) and dual diagnosis can assist you in overcoming a mental health issue and a substance use disorder (SUD). Please contact our support groups and consult a free medical device immediately if you or someone you know is abusing alcohol or other drugs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What happens if you drink alcohol with Prozac?

Alcohol and Prozac together might quickly cause more significant sedation. Extreme sleepiness can result from one drink while taking Prozac. Situations that may be dangerous can result from this impact. Poor judgment, intoxicated driving, and a higher chance of falls and injuries are a few of these.

Can I have a glass of wine on Prozac?

While using Fluoxetine, you can consume alcohol. However, it might make you tired. For the first few days of treatment, it would be helpful to refrain from drinking alcohol until you observe how the medication affects you.

Can you consume alcohol while on Fluoxetine?

While using Fluoxetine, you can consume alcohol, which might make you tired. For the first few days of treatment, it would be helpful to refrain from drinking alcohol until you observe how the medication affects you.

Find Help at The Recovery Team

If you or a loved one is struggling to limit their alcohol consumption, especially while on medication, it may be time to seek addiction treatment. The Recovery Team has years of experience helping patients reach their recovery goals. Our residential and outpatient programs provide a safe and comfortable environment for patients to recover successfully. Contact The Recovery Team at (800) 817-1247 to learn more about our treatment services.