The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) reports that over 5 million people are reported to misuse prescription drugs. Included on this list of abused substances involve Keppra and alcohol. To further understand how this may impact the lives of people abusing anticonvulsant prescriptions and alcohol, the Transcend Recovery Community team has collated everything you need to know in the hopes of helping someone struggling to get better.
Read on to find out more.
Is It Safe to Take Keppra with Alcohol?
It is never safe to combine alcohol and Keppra—or any type or form of drugs for that matter. Apart from alcohol amplifying side effects, it may decrease the efficacy of Keppra in dealing with the symptoms that an individual might be feeling due to their seizure disorders.
As alcohol is a known tranquilizer, it may worsen the side effects of Keppra which includes suicidal thoughts and mood swings. It may be more of a mental health threat for more people, especially when an individual already manifests erratic behavior.
To fully understand the impact of alcohol and seizure medicine, it's best to consult a healthcare provider on what Keppra's effects may be, especially when you plan to consume alcohol, (regardless if it's in smaller amounts).
Additionally, people with seizure disorders must first finish their treatment course (especially when it is strictly called for by a medical professional) before planning to drink alcohol. That way, it will not interfere with how Keppra is intended to work during treatment as a seizure or epilepsy medicine.
If you are already suffering from the effects of alcohol and Keppra, don't hesitate to receive medical assistance right away to receive proper treatment, especially when it involves overdose or other fatal side effects.
What is Keppra?
Keppra, also known as Levetiracetam, belongs to a class of anticonvulsants used for the treatment of epilepsy. Apart from epilepsy, it can also be used for the treatment of the following disorders:
- partial onset seizures
- withdrawal seizures (related to alcohol withdrawal symptoms)
- tonic-clonic seizures
- myoclonic seizures
Seizure medicine such as Keppra works by increasing the levels of the neurotransmitter gamma-Aminobutyric acid or GABA in the central nervous system.
It is available in different forms and can be ingested as oral tablets or as a clear liquid.
While it is successful in reducing fewer seizures in a patient, using Keppra also has some downsides. Its side effects include the following:
- Loss of balance
- Stuffy nose
- suicidal thoughts
- Mood and behavioral changes
What Are the Risks of Drinking on Keppra?
Similar to what you'll get with the combination of Dramamine & alcohol, you'll find that mixing Keppra with alcohol consumption can elevate your health risks. It's important to know that as with any drug combined with alcohol, any individual may find themselves at a greater disadvantage.
Here are the risks associated with drinking alcohol while on Keppra:
- Long-term hepatic issues - Individuals who mix alcohol with antiepileptic drugs may find themselves suffering serious liver damage longer-term as the organ works double time metabolizing substances caused by simultaneous medication and alcohol use.
- Chronic suicidal thoughts - This is perhaps one of the most concerning risks when taking Keppra. Since this prescription medicine already has suicidal thoughts as one of its side effects, the risk further elevates in patients who habitually abuse engage in alcohol abuse.
- Increased accidents and injuries - Since individuals who ingest alcohol-Keppra combination are most likely to be inebriated, they are highly likely to be involved in life-threatening situations such as vehicular and workplace accidents.
- Changes in emotional behavior - People taking Keppra are most likely to encounter behavioral changes and mood swings that may worsen over time. In rare cases, people who have become physically dependent on alcohol use may become more violent, especially when undergoing withdrawal symptoms.
- Impaired focus and motor coordination - As alcohol slows down brain function, people who consistently experience alcohol use disorder while taking Keppra may have problems with their motor skills brought about by extreme dizziness as one of the side effects.
Side Effects of Mixing Keppra and alcohol
Keppra with alcohol yields the following side effects:
- Tingling sensation
- Muscle weakness
- Skin allergies or rashes
- Suicidal thoughts
- Long-term liver damage
- Extreme dizziness
- Behavioral issues
- Central nervous system issues
Is There Keppra Abuse?
Keppra abuse isn't limited to taking excessive amounts of the drug alone. Abuse may also involve the combination of alcohol and other drugs that are taken alongside Keppra.
Apart from this, abuse happens when an individual develops drug tolerance and medication dependence. A person may even exceed the dosage of their medications since they feel immune to the effects of the drug, or perhaps as a form of recreational use alongside a combination of other medications.
Sometimes, it's too late for an individual to realize that they engage in medical abuse as they feel that the medication they are taking at the time relieves them from any symptoms that they may be feeling. When this happens, they may need intervention from their doctor or a healthcare professional with alcohol withdrawal and alcohol rehab joined by drug detoxification as one of the viable treatment options.
People who are undergoing addiction treatment may find peace in staying at transitional houses. These residences help a person recover better as they receive the proper treatment and support from trained staff members.
Such is offered by luxury sober living places—accommodations that offer the ultimate comfort making a patient feel at home and comfortable while undergoing rigid therapy.
Can Transcend Recovery Help with Keppra and Alcohol Abuse?
Together with our team of addiction treatment support specialists, we can provide adequate supplemental mental health support to individuals who have fallen prey to Keppra/alcohol or seizure medicine addiction.
Although we do not directly offer various treatment options to individuals, our sober living arrangement ensures that individuals can focus on their recovery through the help of our various programs aimed at enriching their lives. From life skills programs and community support from residents and staff alike, you are ensured of a productive time while staying here.
We also provide a safe space for gender-specific residences, in the form of our women's sober living.
Don't let addiction be a hindrance to living a purpose-driven life. Contact us today and let our Recovery Specialists guide you on the first steps you should take that would change your life for the better.