Many Americans are mixing alcohol and medication

Mixing certain meds with alcohol can cause side effects

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WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) –  Fourty-two percent of American adults who drink alcohol admit they do it while taking their medication. According the National Insititues of Health, the proportion was even higher among seniors, reaching almost 78%.

“I think they know in the back of their heads that it’s not supposed to be taken with alcohol or combined with alcohol but I don’t think they know how dangerous it could possibly be,” said Jessica Lyons of West Springfield.

One western Massachusetts woman told 22News she hasn’t had a drink in two years because of the medication she’s taking. She thinks people take the risk because they don’t want to sacrifice their social life.

“I was in a bad car accident back in May and I was prescribed a lot of medication,” said Deamyer Serrano. “So it’s not easy I don’t have much of a social life because I chose not to drink.”

Another reason for the high number of people drinking while on prescriptions, could be because more people are on medications. Havard Medical School reports the number of opioid medication prescriptions has increased tenfold since 1990.

“I think we’re just more aware of illnesses and diseases that are out there now and we’re able to medicate people so therefore you end up with more people on medication,” said Kate Castor of Suffield, Conn.

Blood pressure medications, sleeping pills, painkillers, and antidepressants are the most commonly-used medications.When mixed with alcohol, serious side effects could include internal bleeding and heart problems.

Before starting any medication you should get all the facts. For a list of important questions to ask your doctor, Click Here.

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