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Dangerous side effects may occur if you drink alcohol while taking codeine. There is even a potential risk of fatal overdose occurring if alcohol and codeine are mixed. It’s important to check all food and medicine labels prior to use if you are prescribed codeine or if you are taking the drug for recreational purposes. This drug can impair your thought processes and reactions so you should avoid driving or operating machinery while you are under the influence of codeine, especially until you know how the drug will affect you.
Certain combinations of substances can be fatal and codeine mixed with alcohol is one of those potentially fatal combos. If you have been prescribed codeine or a drug that has codeine in it, it’s very important that you do not drink alcoholic beverages while taking the codeine. Additionally, many of the medications that have codeine mixed in also have high concentrations of acetaminophen which is another dangerous combination when paired with alcohol. Consuming alcoholic beverages while taking large amounts of acetaminophen can lead to liver and kidney damage or renal failure.
Codeine can impair your thinking and your judgment and when paired with alcohol the effects of the drug are magnified. Additionally, alcohol often tends to lower inhibitions so pairing these two substances together can also lead to many behavioral changes that may not work in your best interests. Those who drink while taking codeine are likely to get into trouble as a result of their intoxication or may take part in risky behaviors that otherwise may be out of characteristic for that individual.
Healthcare professionals urge patients not to drink alcoholic beverages while taking most prescription medications including codeine. If you are a heavy drinker, chances are your doctor will not even prescribe codeine for your pain relief because of the inherent dangers associated with drinking alcohol while taking this medication. If you have been prescribed a medication that includes codeine, stay away from alcohol to prevent your risk of potentially fatal consequences.
If you believe that someone you know has taken codeine along with alcohol, seek immediate medical attention by calling 911. The effects of codeine and alcohol could prove to be a deadly combination if left untreated so it’s better to call for help than to risk serious consequences that cannot be reversed.
If you suspect that someone you care about may need treatment for codeine addiction, call our helpline at 800-774-6145 (Who Answers?) for help. Counselors can assist you in getting the right treatment and care for yourself or for an individual whom you care about.