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What Happens When You Take Caffeine Pills & Alcohol?

author image Michele Harvey
Michele Harvey began writing professionally in 2004. Her writing, pertaining to the arts, appears regularly in "I Love Chile News." Since successfully completing two years of creative writing workshops, her poetry has appeared in several literary magazines, including "The Litchfield Review" and "The Wazee Journal." She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in dietetics and nutrition from Florida International University.
What Happens When You Take Caffeine Pills & Alcohol?
You should seek medical help if you drink excessively. Photo Credit: amanaimagesRF/amana images/Getty Images

The mixture of caffeine and alcohol can be toxic to your body. Caffeine appears to override the tiredness that occurs when you drink alcohol. It also delays your feeling of drunkenness. If you drink alcohol while taking caffeine pills, you are likely to keep drinking beyond your usual limits.

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The effect of using caffeine pills together with alcohol depends upon your body weight. If you are a teen or college student who has not yet built up a tolerance to alcohol, or if you are slender, you are likely to be more strongly affected by the combination.

Risky Behavior

The combination of caffeine pills and alcohol may impair your judgment more than drinking alcohol alone. The combination may distort how you perceive your limitations. For example, because of the caffeine's affect, you may believe you are able to carefully drive a motor vehicle, even though you have blood alcohol level above the legal limit.

Physical Effects

Most over-the-counter caffeine pills contain about 200 mg of caffeine per tablet. That's about as much as two cups of coffee. Caffeine will not help you sober up after drinking too much. Using caffeine and alcohol together may cause you to experience an upset stomach, nausea and vomiting.


A study done in 2006 found that about one-quarter of college drinkers try mixing caffeine and alcohol intake in an average month, according to Wake Forest School of Medicine. The researchers found that if you mix caffeine and alcohol, you are likely to leave a bar drunker than if you stick to alcohol alone. The combination can significantly increase your risk of personal injury.

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