Can You Take Viagra With Alcohol?

The general advice is to avoid alcohol just with any medication. Therefore, most people do not know if it is safe to use alcohol with Viagra. However, studies show clearly that alcohol does not interact adversely with each medicine. People frequently take a drink with medications due to habit, dependence, or necessity of the moment.

Romantic date is one such time that frequently demands some alcoholic drink. It helps improve mood, and for some, it is an essential part of sexual life.

Is Alcohol Good or Bad?

One of the problems with alcohol is lots of contradicting information. This leaves people confused. Some say that it is bad for health, and then are numerous studies demonstrating the benefits.

To keep things simple, one needs to understand that alcohol abuse is never good for health. It means that any quantity above 150 ml of wine, or one shot of Vodka, or one can of beer a day is harmful. And most people do not stop at this amount.

Alcohol in moderation can be useful for heart and health, but little abuse can reverse all the benefits (1). It is wrong to think that just any amount can be at least good for heart, as even some abuse may cause changes in cholesterol, blood pressure, and chronic abuse causes cardiomyopathy (2, 3)

This does not mean that one cannot exceed the recommended dose ever. There is no such strict thing, as individual response to alcohol varies greatly, and everyone has to find the right amount for him or her.

Abusing alcohol is altogether a different thing as it causes a wide number of damages to the brain, liver, kidney, and other organs and thus may affect the working of just any medication.

Alcohol Is a Complex Substance

It is challenging to understand alcohol, as it behaves like a complex drug. Even its psychological effects are complicated. Individual sensitivities vary too. Just a small amount of alcohol may cause sleepiness in some, and overexcitement in others.

Physiologically, alcohol is a suppressant of neurons. However, a small amount of alcohol causes excitement as it first suppresses inhibitory neurons (thus inhibitory thoughts), and thus removing psychological inhibition. But at higher doses, its suppressing effect overtakes everyone. That is why a high alcohol dose will always reduce sexual performance.

For older adults, it is best to consume moderate alcohol when planning to use Viagra and have sex.

In young people, mixing alcohol and Viagra may have a more unpredictable effect. Alcohol suppresses overexcitement in young adults, thus helping perform longer. When used with Viagra, alcohol may considerably change sexual behavior, increase the risk of unprotected sex (4).  Some young men may behave more energetically in bed by combining Viagra with alcohol – it could be good or bad, all depending on circumstances.

The above information does not suggest avoiding alcohol altogether, but it just highlights the complexity of the subject and the importance of drinking responsibly.

Can You Drink Alcohol With Viagra?

There is a need to understand other effects of Viagra apart from helping with a hard erection. Viagra increases NO levels; it changes the working of the cardiovascular system by reducing the blood pressure a bit.

Usually, a small reduction in blood pressure by Viagra is good, as it reduces the risk of an increase in blood pressure during an intensive sexual act that often follows the dose of the pill.

However, when mixing with alcohol, an effect might be quite unpredictable. Alcohol generally increases blood pressure for some time after ingestion.  And, at later stages, it may cause swings in the blood pressure by reducing it for a few hours and then again increasing the next day (5).

Usually, Viagra is quite safe for use with alcohol. Since it only mildly reduces blood pressure, it may even help counter the upsurge caused by alcohol. However, those living with hypertension, and taking medication may be careful as the result of this whole cocktail (Viagra plus alcohol plus antihypertensives) may be unpredictable (6).

Although, it is early to say and most research is in animals, but studies show that sildenafil at very high doses may slow down hepatic regeneration. This is no cause to worry for most people, but only for those abusing high doses of Viagra with alcohol, and doing it regularly (7).

Conclusion

Everything in moderation, and moderation in all, is applicable here too. Mixing Viagra and alcohol does not cause any severe or acute complications.

Studies even suggest that mixing Viagra and alcohol does not have any severe long-term effects.

There are very few human reports of any side effects or adverse interactions between these substances. In most such cases, alcohol abusers took alcohol and Viagra in extreme doses and that too frequently.

Some people may wrongly interpret animal studies, but it is essential to understand that those studies use much higher doses of drugs and alcohol.  Therefore, studies on animals have a limited role.

This means that Viagra and alcohol are very safe to combine. No known study (in humans) shows severe implications or adverse interactions. Some rare unwanted things may happen only on abusing the two substances.

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