Myths & Facts of mixing Antibiotics and Alcohol

Many fear that consuming antibiotics and alcohol together can impair the functioning of antibiotics. However, it's not true! We are not aiming to promote alcohol consumption, but rather clear the myth and answer why antibiotics and alcohol should not be consumed together. There are many antibiotics that carry the warning “Do not consume alcohol while using this drug”, while many don't.

Basically, alcohol does not interfere with the antibiotics. The problem is, antibiotics are typically for killing microbes that cause an infection. During this process, they also kill the friendly bacteria in the digestive system and thus cause stomach irritation, stomach upset or acidity. Alcohol also disrupts the digestive system, so with antibiotics and alcohol combined, the outcome is unbearable!

Not only that, alcohol consumption makes a person tired and weak. When antibiotics and alcohol are consumed together, the illness takes longer time to heal as the energy level is considerably low. Elderly people suffer more if both are combined, however with younger people the outcome is often not obvious. Scientifically, antibiotics and alcohol together were not a problem except in the case of metronidazole, where it's fatal. However, with both combined, the other associated problems with antibiotic usage like stomach upset or vomiting only increased.

There are various antibiotics that react when combined with alcohol. Using these antibiotics and alcohol can result in illness, fatigue, nausea, headache,cramps and can lead to death in few cases. So it's better to avoid consuming both together, to avoid complications and also to speedup the healing process.


  1. I'm taking a z pack for a throat infection but like to drink after work on the weekends, is this going to be a problem?

  2. Alcohol affecting the effectiveness of antibiotics if consumed together, is purely a myth. The advise on patients not to consume alcohol when on antibiotics, was first used in the 1940s when penicillin was intoduced as the top line treatment for syphillis. The logic behind this, was to stop patients having unprotected sex under the influence of alcohol. This was a genius attempt by the medical professionals back then, to reduce the number of people infected by the disease.
    There is no scientific evidence to support the fact that, alcohol affects the effectiveness of antibiotics. Many medical officers today, do not even know this. They will be quick to dish out advise to patients on this. Dr IG

  3. THANKS! good to know!... I've read all over the internet that alcohol stops the effects of antibiotics (renders them useless) so this is great to know!

  4. hi , kindly advice me on this.i was given an antibiotic that im taking once a day. i took one in the morning n took four glasses of white wine in the same evening...of which i knew i would take the next tablet next morning. do you think this will slow down the rate healing process?


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