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Question

Can I drink alcohol while taking an SSRI antidepressant?

Answer

SSRIs are antidepressant drugs also known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Manufacturers of most SSRIs recommend avoiding alcohol with these medicines. There are several well-known SSRIs on the market today, including citalopram (Celexa®), paroxetine (Paxil®), fluoxetine (Prozac®), escitalopram (Lexapro®), duloxetine (Cymbalta®) and sertraline (Zoloft®).

SSRI and alcohol potential side effects

The combination of an SSRI and alcohol could possibly increase the chance or severity of side effects such as drowsiness, slow reflexes, or clouded judgment. This can be dangerous when driving a car or operating other machinery. Also, alcohol may make you feel depressed. In this way, alcohol can interfere with the actions of your SSRI to treat depression. Try to avoid or limit your use of alcohol while taking an SSRI.

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DISCLAIMER:

Answers to questions regarding information about medications or health conditions are not for diagnostic or treatment purposes and are not conclusive as to the presence or absence of any health condition. Consult your physician for diagnosis and treatment of your medical condition. The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. Advances in medicine may cause this information to become outdated, invalid or subject to debate. Professional opinions and interpretations of the scientific literature may vary. Walgreens' terms of use and general warranty disclaimer apply to all services provided. If you are in need of immediate medical attention, contact your physician, poison control center or emergency medical professional. If you need to speak with a pharmacist for non-emergency matters, contact your local Walgreens pharmacist or call a Walgreens.com pharmacist toll-free at 1 (877) 250-5823.

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