Mixing Dilaudid (Hydromorphone) & Alcohol | Effects & Dangers
Hydromorphone (brand names Dilaudid and Exalgo) is a prescription opioid painkiller. This pain reliever consists of hydromorphone hydrochloride which affects the receptors in the body’s central nervous system (CNS).
Dilaudid should never be combined with alcohol. Alcohol is also a depressant and serious respiratory depression can occur due to the extreme sedation caused by alcohol and opioids.
Effects & Dangers Of Mixing Dilaudid & Alcohol
Negative drug interactions can occur when combining alcohol with Dilaudid. In fact, no pain medication should ever be mixed with alcohol.
Increased Effects Of Sedation
When alcohol and an opioid-like Dilaudid are combined, you’ll likely become heavily sedated. This can result in shallow breathing, causing respiratory depression.
Because of the sedative effects of Dilaudid and alcohol, many experience fatal overdoses due to the fact that their perception of how much drugs or alcohol they’ve taken can vary greatly.
In addition to this, those abusing Dilaudid and alcohol may also experience overdose symptoms such as:
- pinpoint pupils
- cold and clammy skin
- slow heart rate
- low blood pressure
- slowed breathing
Those abusing alcohol and Dilaudid may suffer from severe withdrawal symptoms after developing a physical dependence to each substance. Withdrawal symptoms may include:
- sweating shivering
- loss of appetite
- body aches
To help eliminate and reduce cravings, doctors may use opioid antagonists and agonists as well as buprenorphine, methadone, or naltrexone to address dependence.
Dilaudid is prescribed to patients when other medications fail to give you pain relief. Dilaudid is an opioid analgesic that is known to help with severe pain.
Hydromorphone is part of a class of medications known as opiates or narcotics.
Because of the calming and euphoric nature of Dilaudid, it can be highly addictive. Other drugs which have similar effects include oxycodone, hydrocodone, and morphine.
Common Side Effects
Some of the short-term side effects of hydromorphone include:
- dry mouth
- muscle pain
Serious Side Effects
Some of the serious side effects of Dilaudid that you may experience can include:
- difficulty breathing
- chest pain
- decreased sexual desire
- nausea and vomiting
Drinking alcohol, especially in excessive amounts, can cause serious sedative effects. This is why alcohol is not to be combined with prescription drugs like Dilaudid.
Short-Term Side Effects
Short-term side effects of alcohol can include mild to dangerous issues. For instance, someone engaging in excessive alcohol consumption such as binge drinking or heavy drinking can experience accidents such as:
- motor vehicle crashes
- alcohol poisoning
In addition to this, other effects you may experience include:
- slowed breathing
- black outs
- blood pressure fluctuations
- impaired motor functions
- mood changes
- vision impairment
- slurred speech
- lack of coordination
Long-Term Side Effects
Long-term side effects from drinking alcohol include:
- liver diseases such as cirrhosis or fatty liver disease
- brain damage
- high blood pressure
- mood changes
- mental health problems such as anxiety
- memory problems
- weakened immune system
Treatment For Alcohol & Drug Abuse
Addiction treatment for both alcohol and opioid abuse is available in an inpatient or outpatient setting. Treatment options for polydrug use may include detox programs, medication-assisted treatment, support groups, and other recovery services.
If you or a loved one needs help, please contact our hotline to learn about our substance abuse treatment centers.
Food and Drug Administration - Dilaudid
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism - Drinking Levels Defined
National Library of Medicine: MedlinePlus - Hydromorphone
National Library of Medicine: MedlinePlus - Hydromorphone Overdose
National Library of Medicine: PubMed - Risks, Management, and Monitoring of Combination Opioid, Benzodiazepines, and/or Alcohol Use
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