July 17, 2023

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

Many people take Pepto-Bismol after drinking to help alleviate symptoms of indigestion and heartburn. However, some wonder whether or not this medication helps with hangover symptoms. Unfortunately, Pepto-Bismol does not prevent hangovers and may even exacerbate them. Instead, reducing alcohol consumption, eating before drinking and drinking at a slower pace can help prevent hangovers.

The Big Risk

The biggest problem with Pepto-Bismol and alcohol is not related to the stomach lining but rather the liver. The liver is responsible for breaking down both Pepto-Bismol and alcohol, so consuming the two at the same time can cause the liver to overwork itself. This can lead to damage and increase the amount of time both drugs are present in the body.

In addition, Pepto-Bismol contains bismuth subsalicylate which can increase the risk of stomach bleeding when combined with alcohol. It is best to wait a few hours before drinking after taking Pepto-Bismol in order to give it a chance to be completely broken down by the liver.

Additionally, combining Pepto-Bismol and alcohol can result in overdosing on salicylate which can cause serious side effects such as weakness, confusion, tremors and even a coma. Anyone who is experiencing these symptoms after taking Pepto-Bismol should seek emergency medical attention immediately. In addition, Pepto-Bismol should not be used by children under 12 as it does contain salicylate which can lead to Reye's Syndrome.

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