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Does anyone else drink alcohol when they are on anti-depressants?

(18 Posts)
Faigle Sun 19-Jul-09 20:34:49

I have just started taking Mirtazipine, and it says on the box "avoid alcohol".
I have been drinking a half bottle wine as self medication for my depression for as long as I can remember. I really look forward to it in the I have to stop?
I really think I would find it too difficult?
Anyone else in a similar position to shed some light?

FlorenceDaphne Sun 19-Jul-09 20:49:39

God yes, I always have glasses of wine.
I'm on the Prozacs, though.

If you find the Mirtazipine makes you feel awful, stop it immediately and return tpo your GP. Ity made me feel like a cross between a zombie and a screaming banshee. It didn't agree with me at all. The Prozac is much better.

Rhian82 Sun 19-Jul-09 20:51:25

I did, with Prozac and Citalopram. Never noticed any problems with them.

Ladylou83 Mon 20-Jul-09 00:27:40

I did with Fluexatine. I certainly couldnt drink as much I could, but found a happy balance in the end.

queenofdenial2009 Mon 20-Jul-09 11:59:22

I'm drinking a glass of wine or two whilst taking venaflaxine and it's OK. But it's worth remembering that alcohol is a depressant and could be making you feel worse and disrupting your sleep. Sorry...

I reckon going outside for a walk or gardening makes a real difference. But a glass of wine in the evening is something I look forward to and I don't think it's the end of the world. Hate to say it though, but half a bottle of wine is more than any woman should be drinking in one go, depressed or not.

littleboyblue Mon 20-Jul-09 12:06:11

I've been on prozac for about 3/4 months now and have continued to drink to my normal habit, which isn't much, maybe a bottle every fortnight or so.
Alcohol is a depressant though, so they do like you to stay off of it so that is doesn't counter-affect the meds iyswim.
I haen't had any problems. Took a few weeks for the AD's to start working, but no issues relating to alcohol. Like everything else, you just have to be sensible about it IMO

kidcreoleandthecoconuts Mon 20-Jul-09 12:09:53

I'm on Lexapro and have continued my normal drinking habits. However I do find that if I open a bottle, I finish the bottle. So I've now got an unwritten rule only to drink on weekends.

makeminealargeoneplease Mon 20-Jul-09 18:27:25

My citalopram and red wine make a fine cocktail.....but seriously if you don't find the meds are working so well stay off the booze for a while and they'll work much better. I think they probably counteract eachother a bit and the ADs have a better chance of working without the booze. Just my opinion.

MIFLAW Tue 21-Jul-09 00:46:07

I did when I was an active alcoholic.

flatcapandpearls Tue 21-Jul-09 01:29:18

I think you should stop if you feel that you are "self medicating" with alcahol. I have been on anti depressants for years and will be on them for the rest of my life do do have the odd drink. But I cannot drink a lot, certainly not half a bottle without being very I'll.

Rhian82 Wed 22-Jul-09 09:49:19

I used to drink half a bottle in an evening, DH and I would share a bottle, over several hours. Stopped drinking when I was pregnant though, and I'm still breastfeeding so don't drink much at a time now.

BlueFlotsam Wed 29-Jul-09 16:17:15


I was told that drinking whilst on anti depressants was like 'trying to push a car uphill with the hand brake on.'

Seriouly it isnt a good idea, there is little point in taking anti depressants if you are going to take other 'medication' which effectively cancels out the effect of the A.D.'s!

Having said that, I drank huge amounts of alcohol and in the end, came off the AD's in favour of the alcohol. Now I am trying to wean myself off the alcohol

Probably fooling myself but I have always maintained that I drink because I am miserable, not miserable because I drink!

Good luck though

peanutbrittle Wed 29-Jul-09 16:33:58

I was a big drinker in the past and a medium one of late. I continued to drink while on citalopram at first, as my AD dosage went up I found the depressive episodes were continuing and when I looked for a pattern were definately WAAAAY worse after I had had a few (or rather slightly more than a few) drinks. I gave up booze (especially the binges at parties etc) and have been on a much more even keel for the past 4 months or so as a result. really wasn't worth it ime. If you have decided to go on ADs you have made a positive choice to try to help yourself beat this thing, giving up booze while doing so is the logical accompanying step. That said, now I have it much more under control I do on occasion have a glass of wine or small beer and I don't notice any sifnificant difference to my mood. But it was scarey enough when it was bad to make me know it is not something worth doing too much of. you might as well just not start on the ADs if you intend to continue to self medicate with booze to that extent.

Sorry, i know it is hard. I think if anyone had said this to me when I was starting on ADs I'd probably have thrown them over in favour of the booze. Maybe it's part of the depressive illness itself, that self medication and reliance on alcohol. Are you getting any counselling to help you work through this? You need to look at your alcohol addiction and see if you can deal with that too.

Hope I haven't been too harsh. Didn't mean to be. Good luck with it all.

YanknCock Wed 29-Jul-09 16:50:23

I drank while on venlafaxine (3-4 times a month), never had a problem with it. My friend who took prozac swore that any alcohol made her feel a load worse and seemed to counteract the effect of the prozac for days afterward. Think it probably depends on the person and the AD.

Sheeta Wed 29-Jul-09 16:53:33


noddyholder Wed 29-Jul-09 16:55:24

Alcohol is a known depressant so you will be putting unnecesary obstacles in the way of your recovery.

TotalChaos Wed 29-Jul-09 17:05:27

agree with noddy and queen of denial, 1/2 a bottle of wine at a time is not going to be helping your depression any, ADs or no ADs. Worth asking a GP (or whoever prescribed it) or pharmacist about why the Mirtazipine instructions say to avoid alcohol.

Faigle Wed 29-Jul-09 23:23:36

Thanks to everyone who has replied so far.

To update everyone, I had such terrible side effects from the ADs-including panc atacks that were so scary I just wanted someone to take me hospital-and felt so sedated & "out of it" that I decided to stop taking them.
I hated that "spacey out of control" feeling.
All the recreational drugs I have tried in he past (weed/ecstasy/LSD) always had the same affect, and I didn't enjoy them either. Hence I only ever "dabbled". Alcohol on the other hand has always had the effect of relaxing me and making me feel happier and I never feel out of control. I know half a bottle daily is far too much-but I look forward to it and am just not ready to give it up at the moment.

I have been referred counselling through my GP,but of course there is a wait.
BTW, my depression is caused by a series of traumatic events that have taken place over the last few years, therefore not "clinical" in the true sense. Untl I can resolve certain problems in my life I probaly will remain depressed-ADs or no ADs.

I really don't want to give up one of the few pleasures I have in life at the mo-red
wine-so shall forgo the ADs and hope counselling & booze help me overcome this horrible mental illness-depression instead.

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