Mixing Alcohol and Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine)

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Vyvanse, also known by the generic name lisdexamfetamine, is a medication primarily prescribed for treating ADHD. It falls under the category of stimulant medications and is classified as a Schedule II controlled substance, meaning there is a significant risk of abuse and physical dependence associated with its use. Consuming alcohol while taking Vyvanse greatly amplifies the potential for bodily harm.

If you or someone you care about is mixing alcohol and Vyvanse, Guardian Recovery can help. We will work with you to develop an individualized and effective program to help you recover from addiction and get you on the road to long-term recovery. We believe in the benefits of a full curriculum of clinical care, beginning with medical detoxification, transitioning into a higher level of treatment, and concluding with personalized aftercare planning. Contact us today to learn more about our treatment options in your area.

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What Is Vyvanse?

Vyvanse is a central nervous system stimulant designed to release slowly in the body throughout the day. Once taken, Vyvanse is converted into a substance called dextroamphetamine, a central nervous system stimulant. It affects certain chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters, like dopamine and norepinephrine. These neurotransmitters play a role in regulating attention and focus. However, they also influence feelings of pleasure and overall well-being, which can increase the risk of misuse or abuse of the medication.

Common Side Effects of Vyvanse Use

While Vyvanse can help manage ADHD symptoms, it is crucial to be aware of its potential side effects. These can include:

  • Decreased appetite. Vyvanse may suppress appetite, leading to weight loss or poor nutrition if not adequately managed.
  • Insomnia. You may experience difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep while taking Vyvanse.
  • Increased heart rate. Vyvanse can cause an elevated heart rate, which may be problematic if you have a pre-existing heart condition.
  • Dry mouth. Dry mouth is a common side effect of Vyvanse and can be managed by staying hydrated and practicing good oral hygiene.

Is it Safe to Consume Alcohol While Taking Vyvanse?

Using Vyvanse together with alcohol can increase the risk of cardiovascular side effects such as increased heart rate, chest pain, dizziness, or fainting. It can also worsen the signs and symptoms of psychosis, such as hallucinations and delusions, severely disrupting perception, judgment, and behavior.

Other side effects of mixing Vyvanse and alcohol include:

  • Extreme fluctuations in blood pressure.
  • Heart attack.
  • Stroke.
  • Risk of seizure.
  • Dilated pupils.
  • Dry mouth or nose.
  • Hyperactivity.
  • Feelings of euphoria.
  • Irritability.
  • Aggression.
  • Memory lapses.
  • Unusual behavior (becoming secretive and isolated).
  • Fatigue.
  • Mood swings.
  • Confusion.
  • Delusions.
  • Paranoia.

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Can Alcohol Block the Effects of Vyvanse?

Vyvanse works by increasing the levels of certain neurotransmitters in the brain, while alcohol depresses the central nervous system. The simultaneous presence of both substances can cause conflicting effects in the brain, leading to unpredictable outcomes and potential harm. Alcohol can reduce some of the stimulating effects of Vyvanse, while Vyvanse can diminish some of the sedating effects of alcohol.

By canceling out each other, mixing alcohol with Vyvanse can create a situation where you feel the need to consume more of either or both substances to achieve the desired result, leading to dangerous outcomes. You may think you can drink more and risk developing alcohol poisoning. You may also have a false sense of sobriety that leads you to believe you are more capable of engaging in activities such as driving when your impairment may still be significant.

Potential Adverse Side Effects of Consuming Alcohol & Taking Vyvanse

The combination of alcohol and Vyvanse can result in the following adverse effects:

  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure. Both Vyvanse and alcohol can elevate heart rate and blood pressure. Mixing them can intensify these effects, potentially leading to cardiovascular problems.
  • Impaired judgment and decision-making. Alcohol can impair judgment and decision-making, and when combined with Vyvanse, these effects may be heightened, leading to risky behaviors or accidents.
  • Dehydration. Both Vyvanse and alcohol can cause dehydration. Combining them can intensify this effect and put additional strain on the body.
  • Liver damage. Vyvanse is metabolized by the liver, and excessive alcohol consumption can strain this organ. Combining the two substances may increase the risk of liver damage.

Risks & Dangers of Mixing Alcohol & ADHD Medications

It’s important to note that the risks associated with mixing alcohol extend beyond Vyvanse and apply to other ADHD medications as well. Stimulant medications, such as Adderall and Ritalin, can have similar interactions with alcohol.

How Long Should You Wait After Taking Vyvanse to Consume Alcohol?

To minimize potential risks and hazards, it is recommended to abstain from consuming alcohol while taking Vyvanse. However, if you choose to drink, it is best to consult your healthcare provider for specific guidance on how long to wait after taking Vyvanse before consuming alcohol. They can provide personalized advice based on your unique circumstances.

Mixing alcohol with Vyvanse can have serious consequences for your health and well-being. The combination can amplify the side effects of both substances and lead to impaired judgment, increased heart rate, and other potential risks. It is crucial to prioritize your safety and follow the guidance of healthcare professionals when considering alcohol consumption while taking Vyvanse or any other ADHD medication.

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  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/adhd/vyvanse-effects-on-the-body
  2. https://www.understood.org/en/articles/vyvanse-what-you-need-to-know
  3. https://alcohol.org/mixing-with/vyvanse/
  4. https://www.samhsa.gov

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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.

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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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