Why Aren’t You Supposed to Drink Alcohol With Antibiotics – Side Effects May Occur

Antibiotics are one of the most common medications. You will need antibiotics treatment when you get a disease caused by bacteria. When it happens, the doctor will prescribe you with antibiotics and tell you to complete its entire course.

This part is very important because completing the whole course of antibiotics is the only way to make sure that the bacteria are destroyed completely.

Just like any other medications, you have to be careful about what you are drinking with the antibiotics. Especially, if you are an alcohol drinker. You cannot take the medication if you are still drinking alcohol. You must stop for a while during your treatment.

So, what aren’t you supposed to drink alcohol with antibiotics?


  1. General Side Effects

Antibiotics itself can cause side effects to the people to consume it. The side effects vary from sleepiness, dizziness, and lightheadedness. It can even nauseate you and causes diarrhea. We also know that drinking alcohol also has some negative effects.

It causes fatigue and upsets your stomach. You can even get a digestive problem, such as stomach pain, diarrhea, and ulcers just by drinking lcohol. Imagine what happens when you mix the two of them.

The general side effects when you are drinking alcohol with antibiotics are flushing (you will find your skin redden and warm when it happens), severe headache, and racing heart rate. Usually, all of these negative side effects will disappear on their own. But, if you still feel uncomfortable, you must seek help right away.

  1. Sick and Stomach Cramps

The general side effects of drinking alcohol with antibiotics are flushing, headache and the increase of heart rate. Those effects get worse when you drinking alcohol with some certain kinds of antibiotics, such as metronidazole, tinidazole, and cefoperazone.

Metronidazole and tinidazole are very useful mainly for treating bacterial vaginosis, while cefoperazone is used for treating infections in some areas, such as skin, respiratory, and urinary. If you drink alcohol with any of those antibiotics, you will feel not only sick but also end up vomiting.

You are going to suffer from stomach cramps and feel your heart beats so fast. Physically you can see your body is flushing. You will also feel the headache.


  1. Excessive Sweating

When you sweat in an uncontrollable amount, you must seek help as soon as possible. There is a chance that that is a sign of a medical issue happening in your body, such as hyperthyroidism.

This side effect will also happen to you if you drink alcohol with antibiotics, especially the griseofulvin. This is the antibiotic that you can use for treating infections caused by a fungus, such as ringworm and athlete’s foot.

Remember, you are not supposed to drink alcohol with antibiotics, in this case, griseofulvin, because it will make you produce a terrible amount of sweat. You will also feel extremely uncomfortable because your heart rate will increase significantly. 

  1. Liver Damage and High Blood Pressure

The liver is a very important organ in your body. It is responsible to filter the blood before distributing it to the rest of the body. It also has an important role in chemicals detoxifying. Imagine how your body can function if your liver is damaged?

It is very possible to happen if you drink alcohol with antibiotics namely the isoniazid and linezolid. Isoniazid is the antibiotics consumed by people with tuberculosis infections while linezolid is functioning as a treatment for pneumonia or skin infections.

When you are suffering from any of those infections, never take your drug with alcohol. Not only the mixture will damage your liver, but it will also increase your blood pressure. 

  1. Antibiotics Work Ineffectively

Another reason why you are not supposed to drink alcohol with antibiotics is it will alter the effectiveness of the drugs you take. When you drink alcohol, the liver enzymes will process it through metabolism. The similar or even the same enzymes are also responsible to break down the medication you take.

When you drink an excessive amount of alcohol, the enzymes that are supposed to break down both alcohol and antibiotics will not work with the latter. It will leave the drugs you take not fully metabolized. This condition will lead to drug toxicity inside your body.


This side effect happens when you drink alcohol with doxycycline or erythromycin.

Doxycycline is a great antibiotic to fight bacterial infections, such as acne and other infections affecting the area of urinary, intestinal, or eyes. Erythromycin works similar to doxycycline but it covers a different area. It is used to treat infections in the respiratory area.