Many medications recommend not drinking due to the possibility of a bad reaction between the two chemicals. This advice is often ignored by many people who find that it is usually a doctor’s over-cautious suggestion, and that little actual harm will come from doing so. However, every medicine is different and in some instances the warning should be taken very seriously.
The makers of modafinil discourage drinking while on modafinil. However there is no explicit warning that combining the two can be hazardous.
Given modafinil’s status as a popular drug for university students, and university students’ penchant for parties, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that there are quite a few reports of individuals mixing the two substances.
Dangers of drinking alcohol while on modafinil
While modafinil and alcohol do not interact in a negative way, one can amplify the other’s side effects.
For instance, both alcohol and modafinil dehydrate the body faster, meaning that if you do not drink more water (which most drinkers often forget to do) you’ll be in for a rough hangover the next day, as well as the potential risk of dehydration and overheating if you’re dancing or in a hot climate. This is very dangerous and care should be taken to stay hydrated every time you’re drinking, modafinil or no.
Another risk is that you can become drunker than you expected. One possible reason for this is that modafinil reduces appetite, and if you have not eaten before drinking you will feel the effects of alcohol faster. Secondly, modafinil combats the depressant effect of alcohol. You may not feel as sleepy or quite as drunk as you really are, leading you to drink more and assume that everything is fine. When the modafinil wears off, or if you continue drinking, you can suffer disastrous consequences. Users have reported drinking to the point of blacking out, a result of not being aware of how intoxicated they actually were.
Safely drinking alcohol on Modafinil
If you have taken modafinil and you are going to be drinking, you should exercise caution. Eat regularly as you normally do, even if you have a reduced appetite. Make sure to drink more water than you typically would, although this may mean a few extra trips to the bathroom. Above all, do not drink in excess. Respect your regular limits with alcohol, even though modafinil may enable you to surpass them for a moment, the consequences later can be serious.
When it comes to drinking and medication, safety should be your first priority. Avoid mixing modafinil and alcohol, and do not use modafinil as a means to stay up and party all night. If you’ve taken modafinil in the morning or early afternoon and are going out that night, be aware that it takes over 12 hours for modafinil to leave your body. Don’t forget about that dose you had earlier in the day. Be smart with your smart drug.