August 18, 2023

How Long After Taking Pepto-Bismol Can I Drink Alcohol?

When taken in moderation, it is generally safe to drink alcohol while taking Pepto-Bismol. However, excessive drinking can irritate the stomach’s lining and worsen symptoms such as nausea and vomiting that Pepto-Bismol is designed to relieve. Additionally, drinking too much alcohol can dehydrate the body and cause electrolyte imbalances which may exacerbate digestive issues.

It is also important to note that consuming alcohol and Pepto-Bismol at the same time can increase stomach bleeding risk. This is because both alcohol and the medication contain chemicals that irritate the lining of the stomach. The combination of these substances can also overwork the liver as alcohol and the medication are both metabolized in this organ.

In some cases, people may experience a harmless side effect of Pepto-Bismol that causes their stool or tongue to turn black. This occurs because the drug contains a chemical called bismuth subsalicylate that reacts with sulfur in the body to create a substance called bismuth sulfide. This coloration usually goes away once the patient stops taking the medication.

Children or teens recovering from chickenpox or the flu should not take Pepto-Bismol because it can cause a dangerous and potentially life-threatening reaction known as Reye’s syndrome. Reye’s syndrome is characterized by changes in behavior, nausea, vomiting, and seizures. While this reaction is rare, anyone who experiences these symptoms should seek medical attention immediately.


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