Get help today 888-287-0471 or sign up for 24/7 text support.
American Addiction Centers National Rehabs Directory

Effects of Mixing Alcohol and Clonazepam

Clonazepam is the generic form of Klonopin and used for the treatment of anxiety disorders and seizures. It’s categorized as a benzodiazepine and works to relax the central nervous system and brain. It also balances chemicals in the brain. This is commonly used for treating bipolar disorder, stroke victims and people with epilepsy. This drug can be addictive and habit-forming for patients. Some will become addicted while taking the medication as directed by a physician, and others can become addicted using the drug recreationally.
“Clonazepam is used for the treatment of anxiety disorders and seizures.”
Users must take precaution when using this medication with other substances. Being addicted to clonazepam and alcohol is dangerous and could be deadly.


  • Scientific American reported on a study conducted by the University of Rhode Island and Brown University that stated 60 percent of participants mixed alcohol with prescription medications, an alarming figure.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that deaths from prescription medications in the last 20 years have tripled in the US.

Signs of a Developing Addiction

drug addiction There are many signs of addiction. Someone addicted to clonazepam will take more medication than prescribed by the doctor at one time, and they may take it more often throughout the day than what’s recommended. Running out of the medication before it’s time for a refill and getting agitated without the medication are also signs of addiction. Addicts will often have mood swings, be irritable and become less sociable. Someone who drinks alcohol on a daily basis while taking the clonazepam may be addicted to clonazepam and alcohol. Smelling alcohol and seeing empty beer, wine and liquor bottles when you know the person takes clonozepam could be signs the person is mixing the two substances.

Dangers of Combining these Drugs

“The effects of mixing alcohol and clonazepam can also include long-term damage to the liver…”
There are many dangers of mixing clonazepam with alcohol. Alcohol can increase the intensity of regular side effects people experience while on clonazepam, such as dizziness and drowsiness. This is very dangerous for anyone driving a car or operating other types of heavy machinery or equipment. Some may experience difficulty breathing, seizures, vomiting, nausea and even cardiac arrest. The heart can stop beating and the lungs can quit functioning when mixing these two substances, resulting in death for the patient. The effects of mixing alcohol and clonazepam can also include long-term damage to the liver, kidney disease and other problematic health conditions.

Available Treatment Options to Choose From

Treating someone addicted to clonazepam and alcohol is going to be more challenging than just treating a single addiction. The patient has to fight two different addictions at the same time. The patient will be cut off from both substances completely or could possibly be weaned off alcohol and clonazepam during treatment. At an inpatient treatment center, there are medical professionals and staff members ready to assist with the needs of the addict in recovery. The addict is going to go through a withdrawal period that may include many side effects, including:

  • Cravings for the substances
  • High fever
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Mood swings and irritability
  • Severe headaches

With the love and support of family members and great, evidence-based care, the addict can overcome their addictions. Many will attend outpatient addiction treatment services when finished with an inpatient program.

Recognizing someone is addicted to clonazepam and alcohol before it’s too late may save a life. Parents with young adults living at home can check bottles of medication to see if the medication is being used properly, and friends and family members of users can look for signs of alcohol abuse. Find out what options could save a person in your life by calling .

Was this page helpful?
Thank you for your feedback.

American Addiction Centers (AAC) is committed to delivering original, truthful, accurate, unbiased, and medically current information. We strive to create content that is clear, concise, and easy to understand.

Read our full editorial policy

While we are unable to respond to your feedback directly, we'll use this information to improve our online help.