Substance Use

Fentanyl and Alcohol Substance Abuse

TABLE OF CONTENTSTable of Contents

person laying down drinking liquor with powder drug and pills

Mixing Alcohol With Fentanyl: What Are the Dangers?

Mixing alcohol with fentanyl is a dangerous combination. Drinking alcohol while taking fentanyl can intensify the effects of both substances and lead to serious health consequences. This blog post will explore the dangers of mixing alcohol and fentanyl.

Quitting fentanyl and alcohol is difficult because of the way these substances affect the brain. As a result, people who try to quit fentanyl and alcohol often experience withdrawal symptoms like anxiety, depression, and irritability. However, there are treatments available that can help people overcome addiction and live healthy lives.

For addiction treatment options near you, call Zinnia Healing at (855) 430-9439.

Fentanyl: What Is It?

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid that is up to 100 times more potent than morphine. It is typically used to help manage pain after surgery or for other medical procedures. However, fentanyl is also often abused for its recreational effects. The drug can be snorted, swallowed, or injected. It is also sometimes sold as a fake version of other drugs, such as heroin or cocaine.

What Is Fentanyl Used For?

Fentanyl was first synthesized in 1959 and introduced in the 1960s for anesthetic purposes. It is a Schedule II narcotic drug, which means it has a high potential for abuse but can be used under medical supervision for legitimate medical purposes. 

When used as directed, fentanyl is used to treat patients with severe pain or chronic pain who have not responded to other less potent opiates. It is also used in cancer patients to manage breakthrough pain that occurs despite the use of around-the-clock opioids. In some cases, doctors deploy it in emergencies to reverse the effects of an overdose of other opioids.

The Risks of Using Fentanyl and Alcohol Together

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends not mixing alcohol with other substances. This applies to illicit drugs and many prescription medications.

Alcohol can make it harder to stay safe and make good decisions, increasing the risk of accidents and accidental overdoses.

Mixing alcohol and fentanyl is extremely dangerous. That’s because both substances are central nervous system depressants, which means they slow down your breathing and heart rate. Mixing them together can amplify each other’s effects, which can lead to serious consequences.

For example, you may experience blackouts, memory loss, vomiting, and seizures. You may also stop breathing altogether and go into a coma. In some cases, mixing alcohol and fentanyl can be fatal.

Why Do People Mix Alcohol and Fentanyl?

People mix alcohol with fentanyl because they want to enhance the effects of both substances; however, this is incredibly dangerous and not worth the risk.

Long-Term Effects of Mixing Fentanyl and Alcohol

People who regularly mix alcohol with fentanyl are at risk of liver damage due to the strain on the organ. Additionally, regular alcohol use with fentanyl can lead to dependence on both substances.

People who try to quit using both substances typically experience withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, irritability, tremors, sweats, and chills. Quitting “cold turkey” can also be extremely dangerous and even life-threatening due to the severity of the withdrawal symptoms. Therefore, medical detoxification is always recommended for people who are addicted to both alcohol and fentanyl. 

Alcohol addiction and fentanyl addiction can cause tremendous hardship for both the addict and their loved ones. However, there is hope. There are treatments available that can help people overcome their reliance on addictive substances and live healthy lives.

Zinnia Healing is a treatment center specializing in helping people recover from addiction. We offer a variety of substance abuse treatment options, including individual and group counseling, family counseling, and more. We also have an excellent success rate. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please call us at (855) 430-9439. We are here to help.

What Are the Side Effects of Fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a potent drug. Common side effects associated with using it, even as prescribed, include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Sweating
  • Itching or redness at the application site

What Is a Long-Term Effect of Fentanyl Abuse?

Fentanyl is a highly addictive drug, and regular abuse can lead to dependence and tolerance. Tolerance occurs when someone needs increasingly larger doses of a substance to achieve the desired effect. As tolerance develops, people who abuse fentanyl may take higher doses more frequently, leading to addiction and other serious health consequences. These include respiratory depression and respiratory arrest, which cause opioid overdose and death.

Other effects include developing personality disorders and mental health disorders like anxiety or depression.

Organ damage is also a concern with long-term fentanyl abuse. The liver, kidneys, and heart are all at risk for damage from the toxic substances in the drug.

What Is the Legal Status of Fentanyl?

In recent years, there has been a sharp increase in the use of fentanyl, leading to a rise in overdose deaths. In response to the public health crisis, many states have enacted laws that impose stricter penalties for the possession and distribution of fentanyl. The federal government has also made it illegal to possess or distribute large quantities of the drug. As the opioid epidemic continues to affect communities across the country, the legal status of fentanyl will likely continue to evolve.

Can You Overdose on Fentanyl?

A fentanyl overdose can be a life-threatening emergency. If you think someone has overdosed on fentanyl, it’s essential to act quickly and call for medical help right away. An overdose occurs when a drug produces serious adverse effects and potentially fatal symptoms.

When people overdose on fentanyl, their breathing can slow or stop. This can cause hypoxia when the amount of oxygen that reaches the brain is decreased. Hypoxia can lead to loss of consciousness, coma, permanent brain damage, and even death.

Naloxone is a medicine that can treat a fentanyl overdose when given right away. If you think someone has overdosed on fentanyl, don’t wait. Contact medical professionals immediately.

Consuming alcohol and fentanyl together can increase the risk of overdose from both substances because each amplifies the other’s effects.

Zinnia Healing Can Help

Quitting fentanyl and alcohol can be extremely difficult, especially if you have been using the substances for a long time. Fentanyl is a powerful opioid often used as a pain reliever and can be very addictive. Alcohol is also highly addictive and acts as a depressant on the nervous system. When you mix the two substances together, they can have a powerful effect on your body and your mind. Quitting both substances can be challenging because of the withdrawal symptoms that you may experience.

At Zinnia Healing, we specialize in helping individuals struggling with substance use disorder find sobriety. Depending on each individual’s needs, we offer detox services and inpatient and outpatient treatment programs.

Our goal is always to provide comprehensive care that addresses not just the addiction but also any underlying mental health issues, such as anxiety, depression, or trauma. With our help, it is possible to achieve long-lasting sobriety. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help.