Mixing Alcohol and Cialis

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Cialis is a medication used to treat erectile function. Although Cialis is not considered habit-forming, alcohol, on the other hand, is highly addictive. Alcohol misuse can make it more challenging for a man to sustain an erection, meaning drinking while using Cialis is counterproductive. In addition, chronic or heavy alcohol consumption contributes to a wide range of adverse health issues, complications, and diseases.

If you struggle to control your drinking despite its impact on your sexual dysfunction, you may have an alcohol use disorder (AUD). Fortunately, this is a treatable condition that can be addressed using an individualized treatment plan customized to meet your unique needs and circumstances. At Guardian Recovery, we are dedicated to our client’s sobriety and wellness.

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Effects of Cialis & Alcohol

Cialis (tadalafil) is a prescription drug approved to treat erectile dysfunction (ED) or difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection. (1) It is generally considered safe and effective for this purpose. However, if Cialis is combined with alcohol, this can lead to adverse interactions and reduce the medication’s effectiveness. Like many other prescription medications, Cialis has the potential for side effects, and some of these can be worsened with alcohol misuse.

Drinking in moderation is less likely to affect Cialis or result in health risks. But if a person takes Cialis and misuses alcohol, they may be at a higher risk of experiencing adverse effects. Heavy drinking with Cialis can lead to orthostatic hypotension (OH), a sudden fall in blood pressure occurring when a person assumes a standing position. (2) This can further produce headaches, dizziness, and fainting and result in falls, fractures, or other injuries.

OH may also cause the heart to beat rapidly, resulting in severe cardiac problems. This can occur because Alcohol and Cialis are vasodilators that lower blood pressure by relaxing blood vessel walls and allowing them to widen. (3) Additionally, if a person consumes too much alcohol while taking Cialis, abruptly stopping alcohol use can lead to a sudden rise in blood pressure.

Other Side Effects of Cialis & Alcohol Include:

  • Abdominal pain.
  • Nausea.
  • Coughing.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Muscle aches.
  • Flushing.
  • Racing heart.
  • Vision changes.
  • Impaired hearing.

Because misusing alcohol with Cialis can undermine the medication’s effectiveness, prostate issues and symptoms of ED may result. ED is believed to be caused by low testosterone, which can also cause smaller testes and infertility. (4)

Alcohol & Erectile Dysfunction

ED typically affects older men, but men of all ages can experience it. (5) Men with heart disease, diabetes, or other illnesses are at an increased risk of encountering ED symptoms. (6)

Whether a person is using ED medication or not, long-term excessive alcohol misuse may prevent proper erectile function. In fact, heavy drinking is among the leading causes of ED, so using Cialis while continuing to drink may not yield many benefits. In addition, research has shown approximately 71% of men who drink heavily have a sexual problem, such as ED, caused by drinking. (7) Even light-moderate drinking can cause issues for a man attempting to get an erection. For this reason, avoiding alcohol heavily could benefit those men experiencing erectile problems, whether or not they’re using  ED medication.

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How Do You Know You Have an Alcohol Use Disorder?

As with drug misuse, people can become physically and emotionally dependent on alcohol, resulting in a harmful and sometimes lethal addiction. Heavy alcohol use has many adverse effects on an individual’s health, mental wellness, and lifestyle. In fact, the lifespan of people with AUD is, on average, 24-28 years shorter than those without AUD. (8)

Someone who drinks alcohol with Cialis may exhibit many behavioral, emotional, and physical effects that can be apparent to others.

  • Irritability, depression, anxiety, and mood swings.
  • Social isolation, drinking alone.
  • Problems in work, school, or personal relationships.
  • Defensive attitude about substance use.
  • Job instability and financial issues.
  • Sneaking drinks and hiding alcohol in secret places.
  • Preoccupation with drinking.
  • Impulsivity, risk-taking, and poor decision-making.
  • Aggressiveness and anger.
  • Drinking and driving, alcohol-related legal issues.
  • Tolerance, i.e., needing to consume more alcohol than before to achieve effects.
  • Lack of participation in activities once enjoyed or active avoidance of situations that don’t involve drinking.
  • Drinking at unusual or inappropriate times, such as right after waking.
  • Withdrawal symptoms upon cessation of drinking.

Short-Term Physical Signs of Alcohol Disorder Include:

  • Slurred speech.
  • Impaired coordination and poor balance.
  • Slow reaction times.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Memory blackouts.
  • Hangovers.
  • Acute liver failure.
  • Alcohol poisoning.
  • Stupor and unresponsiveness.
  • Unconscious, coma, and death.

Long-Term Physical Signs & Symptoms of Alcohol Use Disorder Include:

  • Malnutrition.
  • Liver damage and cirrhosis.
  • Brain damage.
  • Hypertension.
  • Increased risk of heart attack or stroke.
  • Anemia.
  • Seizures.
  • Gout.
  • Dementia.
  • Sexual dysfunction.
  • Increased risk of several forms of cancer.
  • Compromised immunity.
  • Osteoporosis.

According to the Dietary Guidelines for America, adults of legal drinking age can choose to avoid drinking or “drink in moderation by limiting alcohol intake to two drinks or less in a day for men and one drink or less in a day for women.” (9)

One standard drink is defined as the following: (10)

  • 12 oz. of beer, hard seltzer, or hard cider.
  • 5 oz. of wine or champagne.
  • 8 oz. of malt liquor.
  • 1.5 oz. of 80-proof liquor, such as gin, rum, tequila, vodka, or whiskey.

Without treatment, alcohol use may lead to other health concerns, including cirrhosis and heart disease. At Guardian Recovery, we offer alcohol treatment programs that provide comprehensive care that addresses each patient’s unique needs.

Seeking Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder

Alcohol dependence is a chronic brain disease, and many people need professional help to quit drinking permanently. People dependent on alcohol may experience severe withdrawal symptoms if they attempt to quit without professional help. The safest way to stop drinking is through a medical detox program. Medical detox helps individuals through withdrawal by providing emotional support and medication-assisted treatment.

After a person successfully detoxes from alcohol, they are ready to begin formal addiction treatment. Experts agree that detox alone is not enough to sustain recovery. For many, inpatient or outpatient treatment is often the next step in the treatment process. Those with other co-occurring medical conditions may benefit from a holistic recovery program that addresses the wellness of the whole person and focuses on all health issues, including ED.

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Comprehensive Treatment Programs for Alcohol Use Disorder

If you have not been to curb your drinking despite its impact on your sexual function or other health issues, you are urged to seek professional help today. At Guardian Recovery, we offer individualized treatment programs featuring a wide variety of therapies, services, and activities, including the following:

  • Intervention services.
  • Medical detox.
  • Medication-assisted treatment.
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy.
  • 12-step immersion.
  • Individual and family therapy.
  • Relapse prevention.
  • Residential inpatient.
  • Partial hospitalization program.
  • Intensive outpatient program.
  • Holistic healing.
  • Aftercare planning.

We strive to ensure every individual is provided with the tools, resources, and education needed to sustain lifelong happiness, wellness, and sobriety. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation assessment and health insurance benefits check. You can connect with an experienced Treatment Advisor who can explain our streamlined admission process and help determine what level of care might be appropriate for you. We are here to help you every step of the way in your commitment to a healthier, sober, and fulfilling life.

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Disclaimer: Does not guarantee specific treatment outcomes, as individual results may vary. Our services are not a substitute for professional medical advice or diagnosis; please consult a qualified healthcare provider for such matters.

(1)https://www.fda.gov/drugs/postmarket-drug-safety-information-patients-and-providers/questions-and-answers-cialis-tadalafil (2)https://www.ninds.nih.gov/health-information/disorders/orthostatic-hypotension (3)https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/orthostatic-hypotension/symptoms-causes/syc-20352548 (4) https://health.clevelandclinic.org/low-testosterone-and-ed/ (5)https://www.nhsinform.scot/illnesses-and-conditions/sexual-and-reproductive/erectile-dysfunction-impotence (6)https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/erectile-dysfunction/in-depth/erectile-dysfunction/art-20045141 (7) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2917074/ (8) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4402015/# (9) https://www.dietaryguidelines.gov/resources/2020-2025-dietary-guidelines-online-materials (10) https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/faqs.htm

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Reviewed professionally for accuracy by:

Ryan Soave

L.M.H.C.

Ryan Soave brings deep experience as a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, certified trauma therapist, program developer, and research consultant for Huberman Lab at Stanford University Department of Neurobiology. Post-graduation from Wake Forest University, Ryan quickly discovered his acumen for the business world. After almost a decade of successful entrepreneurship and world traveling, he encountered a wave of personal and spiritual challenges; he felt a calling for something more. Ryan returned to school and completed his Master’s Degree in Mental Health Counseling. When he started working with those suffering from addiction and PTSD, he found his passion. He has never looked back.

Written by:

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Cayla Clark

Cayla Clark grew up in Santa Barbara, CA and graduated from UCLA with a degree in playwriting. Since then she has been writing on addiction recovery and psychology full-time, and has found a home as part of the Guardian Recovery team.

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