As we get older, we can experience a variety of problems from drinking alcohol or other substance abuse.
These problems are compounded when combining alcohol and drugs with medications as well as when we have other health problems.
Older adults generally experience the effects of alcohol and drugs more quickly, placing us at higher risks for falls, car crashes and other unintentional injuries that may result from drinking.
Heavy drinking or drug use can make our health problems worse, including diabetes, high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, liver problems, osteoporosis, memory problems and mood disorders.
In addition, many prescription and over-the-counter medications, as well as herbal remedies, can be dangerous or even deadly when mixed with alcohol.
Medications that can interact badly with alcohol include commonly used medications such as aspirin, acetaminophen, cold and allergy medicine, cough syrup, sleeping pills, pain medication and anxiety or depression medicine.
Older adults who are healthy and do not take medications should not have more than 3 drinks on a given day or 7 drinks in a week, as drinking more than these amounts puts people at risk of serious alcohol problems.
If you have a health problem or take certain medications, you may need to drink less or not at all.
Do you or a loved one have an alcohol or drug abuse problem? Request your free subscription to Care Support Network today to take our free Alcohol and Drug Abuse Assessment to find out.