Mixing meloxicam, a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, with alcohol can cause dangerous and life-threatening side effects. While meloxicam already has its own side effects to be aware of, combining it with alcohol use is even more dangerous. Understanding these dangers is essential in properly taking meloxicam.
In this article, we will cover what meloxicam is, the side effects of meloxicam, the dangers of mixing meloxicam and alcohol, and how meloxicam interacts with other substances.
What is Meloxicam?
Meloxicam is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) medication. Meloxicam is typically used as a painkiller to treat arthritis, osteoarthritis, fever, and tenderness or swelling. Meloxicam works by blocking the enzymes that the body uses to create inflammation. Meloxicam, also known by the brand name Mobic, is distributed in either a tablet or liquid form.
As is the case with many other NSAID medications, meloxicam has the potential for some life-threatening side effects from abusing the medication. These side effects can be exacerbated by drinking alcohol while taking meloxicam. It’s important to speak to a medical professional before consuming meloxicam and alcohol, as it is not recommended to do so because of its associated risks.
Side Effects of Meloxicam
Meloxicam can cause a range of side effects, from mild to severe. These side effects primarily affect the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and can cause some cardiovascular issues. Some are the most common side effects are:
- Abdominal pain
- Nausea or vomiting
- Indigestion or heartburn
- Heart attack
- Increased blood pressure
- Kidney damage
- Gastrointestinal bleeding
Dangers of Mixing Meloxicam and Alcohol
As previously stated, meloxicam can have dangerous effects on the gastrointestinal system and, when taken with alcohol, can significantly increase the risks of these effects.
Since meloxicam is an anti-inflammatory and works to treat arthritis-related conditions, alcohol directly counteracts the medical benefits of meloxicam. On top of this, there are other life-threatening conditions and dangers that can occur when mixing meloxicam and alcohol.
The combination of meloxicam and alcohol can cause GI bleeding and liver damage, leading to intense stomach pain. This bleeding can cause serious damage, leading to stomach ulcers forming and irreversible damage to the GI tract.
As mentioned in the ‘Excessive Bleeding’ section above, meloxicam and alcohol can damage severe damage to the GI tract. On top of this bleeding, alcohol can damage the healthy bacteria in the gut biome. Similarly, meloxicam can also damage the bacteria in your gut, leading to gastritis to occur. Gastritis can cause serious conditions such as stomach ulcers, tears in the stomach lining, and depriving the body of basic nutrients.
Consuming alcohol for an extended amount of time can cause joint pain and an extreme case of arthritis, gout, to form. Individuals who are taking meloxicam to experience the anti-inflammatory properties are canceling them out when consuming alcohol. This combination can actually cause the worsening of joint pain and gout symptoms.
While it’s evident that mixing meloxicam and alcohol will cause significant damage to your GI tract, it can also cause severe heart conditions. Alcohol and meloxicam both increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, so combining them dramatically increases the risk of heart failure. If you experience shortness of breath, severe chest pain, pain in the left part of the body, or physical weakness while taking meloxicam and alcohol, contact a medical professional immediately.
Putting Seniors at Risk
Since meloxicam is primarily prescribed to people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis, many are older adults or senior citizens. Some older adults can have problems with alcohol digestion. This puts them at an increased risk of experiencing life-threatening side effects. As the effects of meloxicam and alcohol are amplified in these individuals, here are some side effects to be aware of:
- Gastrointestinal bleeding
- Kidney disease
- Liver disease
- Heart disease
Meloxicam & Substance Abuse
While meloxicam is a painkiller, it does not contain any opioids like other prescription drugs. This leads to those struggling with addiction mistakenly thinking that taking meloxicam will provide a high. Although it does not provide a high, it can provide individuals with some pain relief, leading to an over-dependency on the drug. Those who have a history of addiction are likely to consume medications with other substances without understanding the consequences.
What Not to Mix with Meloxicam
It may seem like alcohol is the only substance that you shouldn’t mix with meloxicam, but there are other types of substances that can also cause dangerous side effects. Some of the substances to stay away from while taking meloxicam are:
- Blood thinners
- Blood pressure medications
- Other NSAIDs like ibuprofen
While each of these substances can cause varying effects on the body, it’s essential to seek out medical advice from a healthcare provider before taking any of them.
Addiction Treatment at Oasis Recovery Center
Are you or a loved one combing meloxicam and alcohol together or just struggling with addiction and wanting help? At Oasis Recovery Center, we offer individualized treatment plans for those struggling. Our addiction treatment programs focus on creating a holistic, mindfulness-based, and dynamic healing process to address every aspect of addiction. We offer experiential therapies to adjust the treatment to everyone’s unique needs. Whether you are struggling with alcohol addiction or substance abuse, Oasis Recovery is here to help our clients discover their own oasis in recovery.