Home Medication and medical testsAnxiolytics What are the Effects of Mixing Diazepam and Alcohol?

What are the Effects of Mixing Diazepam and Alcohol?

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

To answer this question you must first know how each of them acts individually in your body. It is important that you remember that all the substances and foods you eat are going to be metabolized in your body in one way or another. In most cases, the product of this metabolism will be the active element, that is, it is the compound that will exert the action you are looking for. In others, the product of this metabolism will be just waste material that will be eliminated (usually in the urine).

A good part of the metabolism takes place in the liver. When you ingest different substances that must be metabolized in it, you overload it with work and also cause “competition” between those substances to be processed with priority, which also causes problems.

After this brief analysis, in this FastlyHealarticle we are going to answer the question: what happens if you take diazepam and alcohol at the same time?

Diazepam: what it is for and effects

Diazepam is part of the large group of psycholeptic drugs (which act on the central nervous system), and within these it is part of anxiolytics , a group of drugs used to combat anxiety . Here we find the family of benzodiazepines, to which it belongs.

In addition to its uses as an anxiolytic, it has a few other uses.

Mechanism of action

It works by facilitating the binding of Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) to its receptor on the nerve cell and increasing its activity. GABA is a neurotransmitter found in various parts of our brain, predominantly in the cortex, limbic system, thalamus, and hypothalamus. Its main function is to inhibit some functions.

Thus, diazepam would act at these levels. Hence it is considered a central nervous system (CNS) depressant.

Its main medical use would be as an anxiolytic, although it is also used as a hypnotic (sleep inducer), anticonvulsant, sedative, muscle relaxant and amnesic. All of these different effects are dose-dependent.


Once ingested orally, 99% of the consumed dose will be available and its action begins around 30 minutes.

Its metabolism is hepatic. Once you take it, your liver will break it down into three active metabolites: desmethyldiazepam, oxazepam, and temazepam. Its action will last about 3 hours, although its elimination in the urine can take from 20 to 50 hours.

Effects of alcohol on the body

Alcohol is a substance considered psychoactive , that is, it acts at the level of the central nervous system (CNS).

Mechanism of action

Its main action is on GABA, which is why it is also considered a CNS depressant.

In addition to this depressant effect, it interacts with other neurotransmitters: dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin, thus generating a generalized incoordination activity in the brain that causes the initial reaction of apparent stimulation.

It has an addictive effect because it produces tolerance (the necessary dose is required to achieve the same effect), and dependence.

In addition, by acting directly on the different cells of the body, it causes dehydration of them. Free intracellular fluid would be eliminated via the urinary route, which causes increased diuresis.

Consumed chronically, it has a direct damaging effect on certain organs: kidney, liver, brain, pancreas, stomach and heart, causing varying degrees of damage that are cumulative and not reversible. In the following article you can find out about the long-term effects of alcohol on the brain .


Your metabolism is hepatic tico , there are three possible enzymatic pathways for action. The most common is the so-called alcohol dehydrogenase.

Once ingested, its availability in the blood is 99% after 10 minutes. Its elimination is by the pulmonary route (with breathing), by the enteral route and to a lesser extent by the urine, its action lasting from 2 to 4 hours and its total elimination from 14 to 28 hours.

Diazepam and alcohol: can they be mixed?

If you have already read all of the above, the answer should be obvious, you can NOT mix diazepam and alcohol , both drugs are strong depressants of the CNS and exert synergistic action, that is, they enhance each other in their actions.

Thus, the risks of taking diazepam and alcohol at the same time include (progressively and dose-dependently):

  • Drowsiness (mild to profound)
  • Various degrees of loss of balance.
  • Alteration of motor coordination (from simple alteration to absolute deterioration).
  • Decreased heart rate
  • Various degrees of respiratory distress (which can lead to respiratory arrest).
  • Various degrees of alteration of the level of consciousness.
  • Coma.
  • Death.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to What happens if I take diazepam and alcohol? , we recommend that you enter our category of Medication and medical tests .

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