Singulair and Alcohol

by on July 20, 2012

Consuming alcohol is not expected to cause serious effects for patients who take Singulair (montelukast). However, you should consult your healthcare provider before drinking alcohol as it may be contraindicated in your condition.

Possible Side Effects

Although alcohol use and Singulair is unlikely to cause harm, theoretically, this combination can increase the risk of certain side effects, particularly drowsiness or dizziness. If you are already experiencing these side effects, alcohol can make it even worse. It may be best to avoid drinking alcohol altogether.

Do not drive or engage in activities that require focus. Whether you are taking Singulair or not, do not drink alcohol and drive. People using Singulair are also advised not to overindulge in alcohol, especially if you do not know yet how you react to this drug combination. If you decide to drink alcohol, do not take in huge amount at once. Drink small amounts and to see how it affects you.

Alcohol Health Risks

Singulair is often prescribed for individuals with asthma and allergy. Usually, health experts recommend people suffering from these medical conditions to avoid alcohol. This is because alcohol can worsen asthma and can trigger allergy attacks.

It is suggested that alcohol use can trigger acid reflux - a condition that causes the stomach fluids and contents to regurgitate or bubble up into esophagus (food tube) and sometimes even into the airways through the back of the throat. Acid reflux usually happens immediately after a large meal, or while sleeping at night. When acid gets into the breathing tube, it can cause irritation, swelling, and production of mucus. This cascades into an asthma attack.

It is also thought that alcohol contains certain compounds known as sulfites, preservatives commonly used in beers and wines. For some people who are sensitive to sulfites, drinking alcoholic beverages can trigger and worsen asthma.

Alcoholic beverages such as wines and beers are complex mixtures of natural chemicals. Some of these chemicals resemble histamine which is produced by the body during allergic reactions. High levels of histamine-like chemicals in the body can trigger alcohol-induced nasal stuffiness. In people with asthma or allergic rhinitis, this effect can increase the symptoms of the condition.

Although rare, some people are actually allergic to alcohol itself according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Drinking alcohol can trigger a cascade of inflammatory reaction which includes asthma. Allergic reactions to alcohol can range from mild to severe asthma attacks. To be safe, people with asthma and allergic rhinitis must consider avoiding alcohol while being treated for these medical conditions.