Even the most helpful drug taken with the best intentions can have deadly effects if mixed with the wrong substance. Falling victim to one of the top five most deadly drug combinations may be an honest mistake or a product of recreational use gone wrong. Seattle residents should always check the drug interactions of prescriptions and ask doctors before drinking alcohol while on medication.
What Makes Particular Drug Interactions Deadly?
There are mainly two types of drugs involved in fatal combinations, and these are stimulants and depressants or “uppers” and “downers.” Stimulants stimulate the body’s central nervous system (CNS) to provide an extra burst of energy or feelings of wellbeing. Depressants suppress the body’s functions and often provide a sense of euphoria, calm or lethargy.
When two uppers are mixed, the results are similar to an overdose. Seattle residents may experience heart attacks, respiratory arrest and stroke. Two downers mixed together may cause cardiac arrest and respiratory depression, because the body’s CNS begins to shut down.
Mixing uppers and downers is a dangerous game to play. Sometimes called “speedballing,” mixing stimulants with depressants will eventually end in death. Because these two types of drugs have opposite effects on the body, symptoms of overdose or other health emergencies may be masked, until it is too late.
Why Is Alcohol So Dangerous?
Alcohol is one substance that should not be mixed with any drug. When used in combination with depressants alcohol speeds up CNS failure, and when taken with stimulants alcohol masks dangerous overdose symptoms that should never be ignored. Seattle residents should avoid drinking while using any drug, but they should be particularly aware of not mixing alcohol and any of the following:
- Benzodiazepines (Xanax, Valium, Ativan)
- Opiates (heroin, morphine, codeine, OxyContin, Vicodin)
- Antidepressants (Prozac, Elavil)
- Stimulants (Ritalin, Adderall, meth, speed, cocaine)
The Dangers of Mixing Cocaine and Opiates
Cocaine and opiates have opposite effects on the body. A combination of the two is not easy for the body to process without dire consequences. Known as “speedballing” the dangerous practice of mixing cocaine and opiates has eased some since its heyday in the 80s and 90s.
The Dangers of Mixing Cocaine and Ecstasy
Cocaine and ecstasy are both stimulants, and when used together they greatly increase each other’s effects. Over-stimulating the body with this combination may lead to death.
The Dangers of Mixing Antidepressants and Painkillers
Serotonin, the hormone targeted by antidepressants, also regulates the heart, breathing and muscle movement. Taking antidepressants and painkillers together may cause Serotonin Syndrome, also called serotonin toxicity, which is difficult to diagnosis and may become fatal within minutes. This combination also severely limits a person’s ability to react in emergency situations.
The Dangers of Mixing Acetaminophen and Over-the-Counter Medications
Check for acetaminophen in over-the-counter (OTC) medications when taking prescription drugs that already contain acetaminophen. Even children’s pain medications (like Tylenol) contain this ingredient. Acetaminophen has a recommended daily allowance of 4000 milligrams, before the user risks overdose. Liver damage and liver failure have been reported in Seattle residentss who unknowingly overdosed on acetaminophen from a combination of OTC and prescription drugs.
Call for Help Today!
We want to help you end the risks of combining drugs and to begin your recovery from drug addiction. Because battling addiction is a fight that never stops, we keep our phone lines open 24 hours a day. We are here when you are ready to reach out for help, so please call now.