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klonopin, alcohol

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Posted (edited)

i'm taking 1mg klonopin twice daily for social anxiety. i know you shouldn't drink alcohol in excess with benzos, but i'm looking for anyone's personal experience with moderate drinking + klon. i feel better in public these days, but i'd like to go out a socialize and drink a pint or have a drink at a bar or a club... i wouldn't even have been able to visit those establishments before starting this drug.

i asked my psych about drinking + this drug and he said "wouldn't advise it, but it's up to you."

bracing myself for the "you should never, ever, ever drink while using benzos" comments. ;)

Edited by buttface

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bracing myself for the "you should never, ever, ever drink while using benzos" comments. ;)
You should never, ever drink while doing benzos.

Okay, I'm a smartass. But seriously? How much faster do you want to get better? If you are truly having the OCCASIONAL drink then you'll be fine. However, if you drink to get trashed even occassionally then you are going to fuck yourself up. Period. Been there, done that.

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Posted (edited)

i'm taking 1mg klonopin twice daily for social anxiety. i know you shouldn't drink alcohol in excess with benzos, but i'm looking for anyone's personal experience with moderate drinking + klon. i feel better in public these days, but i'd like to go out a socialize and drink a pint or have a drink at a bar or a club... i wouldn't even have been able to visit those establishments before starting this drug.

i asked my psych about drinking + this drug and he said "wouldn't advise it, but it's up to you."

bracing myself for the "you should never, ever, ever drink while using benzos" comments. ;)

I've been taking 0.5 mgs. TID for 4 years and I have a drink almost every day and my doctor knows it.

Usually a beer or two or a glass of wine. Doc doesn't like me drinking the hard stuff.

I use to medicate with a lot of tequila so he doesn't want me to slip back into that habit.

As mentioned, it's a trust issue and an addiction issue between you and your doctor.

I've been taking benzos for a long time so I've developed a trust with my doc.

The 'no benzos with alcohol statement' is really a disclaimer.

Some people can't do it and for them this is sound advice.

Others can fudge, though I wouldn't suggest it.

Never know who you are dealing with.

And good God, man. Don't drive to a bar w/ clonazepam in your system.

SZS

Edited by sun_zoom_spark

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Posted

I have a glass of wine almost every night and I take from .5 mg to 1 mg of klonopin before bed. Probably not a great idea, but I do it and I have not had any ill effects that I know of.

I never ever drink when I take xanax.

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Posted

thanks for the responses.

If you are truly having the OCCASIONAL drink then you'll be fine. However, if you drink to get trashed even occassionally then you are going to fuck yourself up. Period. Been there, done that.
i used to get absolutely wasted to allay my anxiety. i don't know if that tendency won't crop up again. i guess i figured the med would 'cover' the anxiety, therefore i could drink like a normal person when i go out - i.e., just one or two drinks. now i realize that's stupid.

One drink once a month or so probably won't hurt you. However, you run the risk with any benzo of overdose because of the synergistic effect with alcohol. You will probably get a lot more drunk than you're expecting, so drink slowly and be mindful of how much the alcohol is affecting you. IMO if you decide to drink, you should at least have a really good idea of how klonopin affects you without alcohol--which means being on it for awhile. If you can't limit yourself to one drink through an evening just to be social, don't even try. It's just not a great idea.

An even better idea is to just get non-alcoholic drinks. Only your bartender will know. Honestly, I don't understand the need to drink when you're out socializing-- I've never had a problem with it-- and friends love the fact that I can be a designated driver. You don't have to be drunk to enjoy yourself.

this is good advice, thanks. i haven't been on klonopin for very long, so i do need to see how it affects me on its own... at some point in the future i might try experimenting with one beer while being mindful of how it affects me, as you said.

non-alcoholic drinks? well, that's no fun. haha, just kidding.

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Posted

I dont think it is a good idea...my fiance is on it and on thanksgiving he had 3 beers and he acted like a retard (excuse the phrase) he was very strange...but funny. Benzos actually intensify the alcohol I have heard, so one beer may feel like 4 to you. If you are going to drink I would at least stay home and make sure you have some one monitoring you

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Posted

In theory, a single glass of wine or a beer with dinner at home probably won't cause a problem. It's just that it's very easy to slip up.

non-alcoholic drinks? well, that's no fun. haha, just kidding.

You're sober, your friends and compatriots are not. Connect the dots and hide the negatives. ;)

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Posted

I would suggest to drink in moderation because of the phenomenon of cross-tolerance which means if your using two or more depressant drugs (i.e. benzos and alcohol) you may develop tolerance for one of the drugs as well as partial tolerance to the other depressant drug. Which just means you might run the risk of needing more klonopin to do the job or more alcohol to feel anxiety-reducing effects.

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I would suggest to drink in moderation because of the phenomenon of cross-tolerance which means if your using two or more depressant drugs (i.e. benzos and alcohol) you may develop tolerance for one of the drugs as well as partial tolerance to the other depressant drug. Which just means you might run the risk of needing more klonopin to do the job or more alcohol to feel anxiety-reducing effects.

how often do you reckon you'd have to drink to have this happen? i guess it's impossible to predict. but i'm hoping this only happens to frequent drinkers? like people who have a drink or two every night.

so, not that anyone cares but, i've experimented with alcohol & klonopin since my initial post and so far, 1-3 beers spread out over 1-3 hours seems to be fine for me. it's strange to go from a binge drinker to a drink sipper, but whatever. this cross-tolerance thing scares me more than any immediate effects of klon + alcohol. guess i'll just save drinking for once or twice a month...

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Posted (edited)

I have a glass of wine almost every night and I take from .5 mg to 1 mg of klonopin before bed. Probably not a great idea, but I do it and I have not had any ill effects that I know of.

I never ever drink when I take xanax.

omg i have a glass, or two, sometimes three... hell mabey the bottle!

but for reals i do have wine averaging 2 glasses of chadonnay a night and i take 2mg of klonopin in the am and 2mg of klonopin the afternoon (mostly i just need 1mg of it) and i also take ambein to sleep too!

i DO have to be carefull witht he ambien, when i take i only have time to get some water (or wine lol!), smoke a cigarette, and hop in bed or else crazzzzzy stuff happens!

but if you wanna go out and fun do it!

klonopin saved my life, amen!

Edited by H3AD_TR1P

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Posted

ok. in reality, you are not supposed to. in actuality, some people do.

the thing to be aware of, though, if that everyone's tolerance varies. what happens to one person maybe not happen to another and visa versa. what happens to you one night might not happen the next, especially since you are a new user.

i really do not see you saying, "ok, i'll abstain from alcohol," but, if you do choose to drink, you really have to be careful. you can potentially end up sick or hospitalized. i don't mean to scare you, but i just thought i'd put it out there.

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like someone else said, you arent suppose to but a lot of people are mixing alcohol and benzos.

I mixed them many times in the past (a bottle of wine at least, I know this is very stupid) and each time, it was a direct way to major depression feelings for a few days.

A drink or two is ok according to my Pdoc but I would strongly recommend to avoid drinking more.

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I was prescribed Klonopin 1mg about a week ago because of an very bad event that happened at my work (I work in a prison) with an inmate and another officer.

I didn't know that klonopin did that to you if you drank alcohol. I'm a CHRONIC tequila drinker and I can go though maybe 15 shots a night. I never noticed a change in my drunken-ness, but I did notice that not once did I get nauseous which I commonly did before. It didn't occur to me that klonopin affected you in that way until one of my "friends" came over and saw the pill bottle on my counter top and got excited over it. I asked her what it was and she told me to look it up... here I am.

Can I still drink tequila (not 15 shots like I normally do) when taking these pills? I have to take them twice a day, but normally I only take them once a day in the evening.

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Posted (edited)

Can I still drink tequila (not 15 shots like I normally do) when taking these pills? I have to take them twice a day, but normally I only take them once a day in the evening.

Only if you want to be a overdosed, dead corrections officer. Seriously. Klonopin makes you all relaxed and sleepy so you don't notice you are vomiting and breathing it in at the same time. Hence choking on your own vomit.

It doesn't matter that you take the pills hours before you drink... they last for 8-10 hours.

If you are drinking 15 shots a night, you don't need a website, you need a detox program or an AA group. And likely a less stressful job. My father is a recovering alcoholic. I've seen rock bottom, and almost killing yourself with booze and pills is pretty damn close.

Edited by gizmo

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Posted (edited)

Buttface-

I'm not sure what dosage of klonopin you are taking, but that aside........MAN, 15 shots of tequila per night would likely cause ANYONE to have anxietly and depression from the alcohol alone!

Mixing this with almost any dose of a benzo is just bad news, PERIOD!

Get detoxed first. Engage in a program to get you off the booze. Does your doc know about this? Doubtful!...as I don't think anyone but a quack would prescribe benzos for someone with a chronic alcohol addiction.

Taking benzos after a night of drinking can surely relieve the symptoms of a hangover, but it also sets you up for a tragic cycle of abuse....alcohol which you admit you are already abusing, then comes the cycle of bringing yourself back by using benzos. Very likely the you will become habituated to the benzos whether that's your desire or not. You'll need more to "bounce back" from the continued nightly benging.....the cycle expands and eventually you could find yourself in a broadening cycle.

Your wellness(and possibly eventually your life) are more important! Please seek out a recovery program that works for you, and learn the coping skills that can help you deal with the work situaion without self medicationg......DBT counseling is wonderful for many. Give it a try.

My best to you in your battle, which is likely to only get worse with the combo you're now taking.

Deepster

Edited by Deepster

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I think a lot of people here are a little paranoid about the subject matter.

In the end its all about tolerance. If you take a handful of pills and drink more than you normally would on an empty stomach you are going to run into trouble.

If you drink regularly and take your benzos regularly, you will build up tolerance to them (and possibly dependence).

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i am 90 days off klonopin / alcohol combo, after rehab unfortunately. i have had high tolerance whole life, pretty solid rock star. was on klonopin rx 6 years, daily drinker... be careful with hard liquor and klonopin.

basically, it's a slippery slope. they are wonderful together, yet, as well highly addictive together. just try to be mindful of the alcohol intake - take a look periodically to see where your rough average intake daily might be of each.

if the klonopin and alcohol each get to somewhat regular elevated intake, be careful. they interact oddly in elevated dosage together. withdrawal is very tough (and dangerous without professionals)

also, this book is pretty cool - The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook by Edmund Bourne. it may have helped me before i lost my way.

take it easy - i wish i had!!!

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It's all about tolerance, blah, blah. That's been said so I won't go over it again.

Advice? 15 shots of anything is too much.

I have low tolerance to both, so I will have about a half a beer and already feel somewhat flushed and odd. I'm on .5-1, 2x/d.

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My view is that ive taken paxil for the majority of the last 8 years. 5mg as that is all that my system can handle. More than that and I have trouble sleeping and have stomach aches. I have no experience with klonopin.

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I used to do 8-12 drinks a night (scotch, vodka, etc.) while I was on 2-3mg of Klonopin. When I drank this much, I would black out. SCARY!! I'd wake up at 3am with the TV static and only remember events up to about 8pm. Not good.

I stopped mixing the two and things got much better. Now I don't drink at all and only take an average of .5mg of Klonopin every other day. I don't think that 1 or 2 drinks would be that bad, but then it also depends on how much Klonopin is in your system, your body weight, etc.

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I take Klonopin 4x daily for PTSD and severe anxiety. I used to drink, maybe one or two a night, never looking to get drunk or skunked, just nicely buzzed. The thing is how well do you tolerate alcohol w/out Klonopin? If you are the type that gets swacked after 3oz of wine spritzer, then, alcohol and any other depressant will be dangerous. If you were always able to drink and hold your own while drinking (good judgment and all that...) than Klonopin in the mix won't cause severe symptoms. BUT ------ remember, your body is always changing and your tolerance to things shifts along with the changes. Don't count on last years stats to be true today. If you must drink, start slow, watch the effects, and never drink to excess with benzo's in your system. The two are powerful drugs, respect them, and respect your body and you will be okay.

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Posted (edited)

Mixing alcohol and Klonopin will definitely potentiate each other, you get drunk and silly faster and you pass out or black out that much more quickly.

But as someone who is an alcoholic and still struggling for complete sobriety (I'm not there but it's a lot better than a few years ago) what I have to watch out for is how Klonopin makes it so much easier to drink. After an evening's bender a couple of mg or so of Klonopin completely takes the edge off and I can function normally the next day. No jitters, no fog, no edginess and snapping at people.

Of course that's why it's used for people who are long term alcoholics and have quit to avoid the DT's. But if you have steady access to it, though, then it's easy to abuse it this way.

It's not true there is no cure for a hangover. Klonopin and its like are. Be careful not to fall into that trap.

Edited by cairn

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I started taking lorazepam, and then switched to temazepam about 6 months ago, 4 nights a week, small doses, for insomnia. (1-1.5mg lorazepam, 15mg temazepam)

Used to use alcohol instead on those nights that I couldn't fall asleep.

One thing I've noticed about benzos is that they completely remove any desire for alcohol, because of cross-tolerance. I used to be able to have maybe half a mug of hard liquor and I'd fall asleep. Now, basically, any amount of liquor doesn't make me 'drunk' -- I'd likely vomit before the feeling of intoxication sets in.

So essentially, for me, switching from alcohol as a hypnotic to benzos has been a complete success, and the benzos have completely extinguished any desire on my part to ever have another drink again.

I think if I were the kind of person who liked to get drunk -- I'd probably abuse benzos instead. But I don't want to go down that road (even though my Dr. trusts me with 6 month supplies of benzos now....).

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Posted (edited)

It's so easy for us to tell you online that you really shouldn't drink at all while on meds, but we all know that when we go out for happy hour, the majority of us are not ordering water.

I made a mistake in March that landed me in the hospital. I took Xanax before going to a party because my anxiety was so high. It turns out that the Xanax made my tolerance very low. I should have known better than to binge drink after taking Xanax, but sometimes I think I can defy the laws of science. (I'm pretty damn stubborn.)

Since then, I have stopped binge drinking completely. Sure, there are some nights that I get pretty tipsy, but never to the point where people should be concerned about me. I also always make sure that I have not taken Xanax during the previous 6 hours or so.

My doctor has prescribed me Xanax and temazepam for sleep for my insane insomnia. Lately I've been on a wine-tasting kick, so I usually have a glass after work. Two at the most. To be honest, the benzos and alcohol don't affect me like they used to, but perhaps it's just because I'm being more cautious.

My doctor gave me a prescription for clonazepam today, so I'm a little nervous taking 3 benzos. I've always been afraid of them simply because I don't want to get addicted (even though I've been taking them for a year with zero problems) and I would prefer to take other things for my anxiety, but they work for me, and I'm very careful about using them. Hopefully, the clonazepam will decrease my use of Xanax as it will keep me at a steady level all day.

Do I think a drink or two will hurt? Probably not. (Keep in mind how many ounces are in your drink... if you have an 8 ounce glass full of bourbon, that does not equal one drink! It will taste superb and it might be fun until the inevitable hangover, though!) I've talked to my psychiatrist about this at length as I'm 23 and just started a new job with people my age, so happy hour is always in the equation. He says that as long as I drink moderately, I should have no problems. However, when I start a new medication, I do hold off on drinking for a little bit just to get used to how I feel on the medication and how it affects my brain/judgment/drinking/etc. And before I have a drink or two at a bar after starting a new medication, I stick with water at happy hour and have a drink or two at home so I know how the alcohol affects me on my medication. (This will be especially important for me since I will be relying more on clonazepam than alprazolam and the half-lives are very different.)

Wow. I was planning on answering your question, but I just posted a personal journal in here. I just took my first Klonopin today, so I am also feeling a little nervous. As long as you're not drinking in a drastic manner, I would assume that you will be fine, simply because that is what my doctor told me. However, I don't know your history and background, so you might want to ask your pdoc about how often you can drink alcohol responsibly and how much is safe for you to consume. Everybody is different. And don't worry, pdocs won't judge about drinking. Hell, if I had that job I'd be drinking about three glasses of scotch on the rocks each day!

...And I just realized this post was from 2008. A year ago exactly. I'll post this anyways as it's a relevant topic for most of us. I know it is something I worry about often, so I can't be the only one who has heard solid advice from their pdocs. If anybody else has any advice about this topic, I personally would love to hear it.

Edited by daisy

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Posted

Yeah, I'm on .5mg klono 3x per day. I've had very few drinks on my meds, just trying to be cautious. I know I can have one or two drinks and feel okay, and I've never had more than that. I asked my p-doc about it and he said a drink or two here and there is okay, but that it's a terrible idea to get totally shitfaced(not his exact words, but my take on it)

So, yeah, a drink here and there for me, never that much, I'm very cautious about it as I'm not supposed to drink much on either of my meds, so that's what I've heard and my experience in the matter.

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