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Benzos and Alcohol

At Atlantic Recovery Center in Florida, we offer comprehensive addiction treatment programs for our clients. It’s difficult enough to overcome one addiction. However, you may have a polysubstance use disorder with a dependency on more than one substance, such as benzos and alcohol. Learn the dangers of mixing these two drugs and how you can get help.

What Are Benzodiazepines?

If you drink while taking benzodiazepines, you could face some serious repercussions. Alcohol enhances the impact of benzos on your metabolism. This could put your health in serious jeopardy.

Doctors sometimes prescribe benzodiazepines to treat anxiety, seizures, and muscle spasms. They calm the part of the brain that causes anxiety and make it easier to sleep.

Examples of benzodiazepines include:

  • Ativan (lorazepam)
  • Valium (diazepam)
  • Librium (chlordiazepoxide)
  • Klonopin (clonazepam)
  • Xanax (alprazolam)

Because alcohol impacts the same part of the brain, taking both substances at once causes your brain to become heavily sedated. This makes it dangerous to operate machinery, drive a car, and perform other basic functions. You can also pass out. Even low doses affect automatic functions such as breathing.

Our benzodiazepine addiction treatment program can help you wean yourself off benzos and overcome your dependence on them.

Mixing Benzos and Alcohol?

When you mix benzos and alcohol, the substances enhance one another. As a result, the combined effect of a low dose of each is greater than a larger dose of one by itself.

Doctors who give prescriptions for benzodiazepines should inform patients about the danger of taking them with alcohol. Otherwise, the amplified impact of benzos can take several hours or even a few days to metabolize. If you are taking benzodiazepines on a prescription, it’s better to refrain from using alcohol.

Short-Term Effects

In the short term, taking benzos and alcohol may result in symptoms like alcohol poisoning or a benzodiazepine overdose. However, the impact may occur much more rapidly. For example, it takes several hours of drinking for most people to pass out. Yet, mixing alcohol and benzos can make you lose your memory quickly.

Short-term impacts of taking these drugs together include the following:

  • Coordination loss
  • Memory loss
  • Drowsiness
  • Difficulty seeing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Coma

Long-Term Effects

Taking benzos and alcohol together can cause cross-tolerance. Due to the way that both substances impact the brain, someone who already has a high tolerance for alcohol may automatically develop a high tolerance to benzos if they use them frequently.

In turn, this can lead to severe dependence and addiction to both substances. If you are currently addicted to both benzos and alcohol, it could be dangerous to try to stop using it on your own. The risk of withdrawal from both benzos and alcohol include seizure, coma, and even death.

Benzos and Alcohol Withdrawal Treatment

Benzodiazepines can help alleviate the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. They decrease the severity of the symptoms and can help prevent relapse. However, if you are also addicted to benzos, your detox and medically assisted recovery may become a bit more complicated. Our alcohol addiction treatment program can help you overcome your addiction and give you coping skills that serve you well after recovery.

Benzos and Alcohol Treatment in Florida

Along with a multitude of substance abuse treatment options, Atlantic Recovery Center in Florida offers alumni programs that help you build a network of support beyond recovery. We aim to make it as easy as possible for you to retain your newfound sobriety and live the life you deserve. Contact us at 1-866-824-5193 today to begin your journey to freedom from benzos and alcohol.