Can You Drink Alcohol on DayQuil? Risks and Precautions

Home » Blog » Can You Drink Alcohol on DayQuil? Risks and Precautions

In today’s fast-paced world,  we usually don’t have time to slow down and take care of ourselves when we’re sick. This is where the over-the-counter drug “DayQuil” comes in. This popular medication is designed to relieve flu and cold symptoms quickly and efficiently. There is no alcohol in this medicine, right? Yes. It’s the other ingredients in DayQuil that you must watch out for. As with any medication, it’s critical to understand the risks associated with taking DayQuil. It is especially vital when mixing it with an alcoholic beverage. A DayQuil and alcohol combination results in decreased liver function. It will also make your body unable to break down alcohol as usual.

Alcohol on DayQuil – can be a recipe for disaster!

Drinking alcohol while taking DayQuil should be avoided. The reason is that mixing the two is ill-advised. Mixing alcohol with DayQuil can have serious consequences, ranging from mild side effects to life-threatening dealings.

In this article, we’ll explore the potential risks of drinking alcohol while taking DayQuil, and share recommendations on how to stay safe and healthy.

What is DayQuil?

DayQuil is an over-the-counter medication that eases cold and flu symptoms, such as congestion, coughing, and fever. The medicine is made to use during the day. The active ingredients in DayQuil work together to relieve symptoms of the common flu or cold. The product comes in several various formulations. The several active components are Dextromethorphan, Phenylephrine, and Acetaminophen.

  • Dextromethorphan – It is a cough suppressant as it helps to suppress coughing.
  • Acetaminophen – It works as an analgesic as it is a pain reliever and fever reducer.
  • Phenylephrine – It shrinks blood vessels in the nasal passages to reduce congestion.

DayQuil is available in different forms, such as liquid capsules, coated caplets, or liquid, and each formulation contains different ingredients. DayQuil Severe has the same ingredients as regular DayQuil, but it also includes guaifenesin, which helps to thin and loosen mucus. DayQuil Cough contains dextromethorphan, guaifenesin, and phenylephrine. On the other hand, DayQuil High Blood Pressure only contains acetaminophen and dextromethorphan.

Alcohol and DayQuil Together

Alcohol works as a depressant that slows down the central nervous system. This can have a range of effects on the body, including:

  • Slower reaction times
  • Impaired judgment
  • Reduced coordination

Can you Drink Alcohol on DayQuil?

Absolutely NO! While it is technically possible to drink alcohol while taking medication, it is not recommended. The reason is that alcohol can increase the effects of certain medicines. Mixing alcohol with DayQuil can increase the risk of such side effects. Below is the breakdown of risks and potential side effects of mixing DayQuil and alcohol.

Read more about abusing cough syrups: The Dangers Of Lean Addiction In Youth

Risks of Combining Alcohol and DayQuil

It may be tempting to drink alcohol when you’re feeling under the weather. However, it is critical to consider the potential risks of remaining safe and healthy. Combining alcohol and DayQuil can potentially cause dangerous interactions. Additionally, alcohol can intrude on the body’s ability to process DayQuil, leading to unpredictable effects. Mixing Alcohol and DayQuil can increase the risk of side effects, including:

  • Dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Respiratory depression
  • Impaired judgment
  • Drowsiness

Drinking alcohol on DayQuil can also bring some severe side effects, including:

  • Blistering
  • Peeling skin
  • Trouble breathing
  • Trouble Sleeping
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Rashes/hives/itching

The long-term risks of Dayquil and alcohol and addiction treatment are well-researched. High doses of both substances can lead to hallucinations and high blood pressure. As we have discussed, the several active ingredients of Dauquil, each component comes with its side effects when used with alcohol. Let’s learn the potential risks associated with mixing alcohol and DayQuil.

Side Effects of Combining Alcohol and Dextromethorphan

  • Stupor
  • Shallow breathing
  • Coma leading to death

Side Effects of Combining Alcohol and Acetaminophen

  • Fever and  Chills
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Appetite loss
  • Joint swelling or pain
  • Abnormal bruising
  • Extreme weakness
  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes
side effects

What are the Factors that can Increase the Risk of Harmful Interactions?

Factors that can increase the risk of harmful interactions between Alcohol and DayQuil include:

  1. Having liver or kidney disease
  2. Drinking large amounts of alcohol
  3. Taking more than recommended doses of DayQuil
  4. Having a history of alcohol abuse or addiction

Precautions for Drinking Alcohol on DayQuil

Remember, your health and safety are the top priorities. It’s essential to take necessary precautions when drinking alcohol while taking DayQuil. You should seek medical help if you experience any adverse effects. The healthcare providers at sober living homes can recommend the best treatment for your recovery.

Precautions: If you Choose to Drink Alcohol on DayQuil

If you drink alcohol while taking DayQuil, it’s essential to do so in moderation. Be aware of how alcohol is affecting your body. You need to limit your alcohol intake to one or two drinks. It’s also essential to avoid driving or operating heavy machinery while under the influence of alcohol and DayQuil.

Precautions: If you Accidentally Drink Alcohol on DayQuil

If you accidentally drink alcohol while taking DayQuil, it’s essential to seek medical attention immediately. Depending on the amount of alcohol and DayQuil ingested, you may experience mild to severe side effects. In some cases, you may need emergency medical care.

Alternative Remedies for Common Cold or Flu Symptoms

Several options are available if you’re looking for alternative remedies for cold and flu symptoms. Some people find relief from using a neti pot to clear nasal passages, while others use herbal remedies like echinacea or elderberry. Talking to your doctor before using alternative therapies is necessary, especially if you’re taking medication or have a medical condition.

flu remedies


If you are a regular and heavy drinker, it’s advisable to avoid consuming alcohol altogether while taking DayQuil. Abstaining from alcohol is the safer choice when using this medication.

Alternative Medicines to DayQuil

Here are some over-the-counter remedies that you can safely use even if you decide to have alcohol:

  1. Saline drops: Saline drops are great for clearing mucus and relieving stuffy sinuses. You can buy them at the store or make your own by mixing some of salt into 8 ounces of warm water.
  2. Mucinex (guaifenesin): Guaifenesin is an expectorant that helps loosen mucus. It is generally safe to take guaifenesin with alcohol as long as you stick to the recommended dosage and drink in moderation. Just make sure to follow the instructions on the package.
  3. Afrin (oxymetazoline) nasal spray: Afrin nasal spray can relieve nasal congestion. Using Afrin while drinking alcohol is generally safe. However, remember that it is meant for short-term use, typically no longer than three days, to avoid rebound congestion.

How Long Should I Wait Before Taking a Drink?

DayQuil contains acetaminophen, which is hard for the liver to metabolize. So, it’s best to avoid alcohol entirely when taking acetaminophen. The effects of Dayquil can last for 4-6 hours. But it varies based on personal health factors. It’s not recommended to mix alcohol and Dayquil.

If you’ve taken Dayquil earlier, you may have a drink after 4-6 hours. Remember that alcohol can linger in the body for up to 3 hours. Taking Dayquil after consuming alcohol is not recommended. The time between taking Dayquil and drinking alcohol is unique to each individual.

If you’re still unsure about whether it’s safe to drink alcohol on DayQuil, talk to us, and we will assist you with a profound answer.

DayQuil and Alcohol Addiction Treatment

Using alcohol and DayQuil to achieve a “loss of control” sensation indicates substance addiction. Engaging in substance abuse can lead to significant changes in their thoughts, emotions, and behavior. These changes can be so extreme that the individual may seem unrecognizable from their former self before substance abuse.

If you’re struggling with alcoholism, seeking assistance without delay is crucial. It’s vital to focus on the psychological and physical aspects of DayQuil and alcohol addiction treatment to address these changes effectively.

Addiction Treatment in Los Angeles, California

Are you struggling with issues related to DayQuil or alcohol?

If so, it’s essential to seek treatment as soon as possible. Addiction is a chronic condition that needs ongoing care and support. It can be challenging to overcome without professional help.

At Launch Center in Los Angeles, California, our expert team is dedicated to creating personalized addiction treatment programs to meet your unique needs. It is a holistic mental health and dual diagnosis day program. Our comprehensive trauma-informed approach includes multiple levels of care, therapy programs, and specialized options for seniors, women, and young adults.

Take the first step towards a more satisfactory life today, and contact us. With our support, the possibilities for positive change are endless. Join us now, and let us help you achieve your health goals!

Are you ready to change your life?

To Find Help For Yourself or your Loved Ones, Contact Us!

About Our Founder

Jose Hernandez, for over a decade, has been involved in alcohol and addiction recovery helping people succeed in overcoming substance abuse and regaining control of their lives. He has experience in all aspects of the recovery world, from facilitating entry into treatment as an intervention specialist to counseling and case management at rehabilitation facilities. Jose has worked one-on-one with individuals as a sober companion and with groups as a resident counselor at addiction treatment centers and is certified by the California Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (CAADAC) to practice as a substance abuse counselor.

Through his professional experiences in crisis intervention, drug and alcohol detoxification, substance abuse counseling, and relapse prevention, Jose has developed a unique plan for case management that bridges the gap between a person’s painful past of substance abuse and a future of sobriety.

At Riviera Recovery, a sober living facility with multiple locations, clients continue their transition from the supportive environment of a treatment center to living well and happily in the “real” world. The program he designed at Riviera Recovery personalizes treatment plans that enable clients, including those with a single or dual-diagnosed mental health disorder, to embrace a satisfying life.

His greatest endeavor has been establishing LAUNCH, a Los Angeles-based life skills intensive outpatient program for young adults. LAUNCH works with recovering men and women to establish personal vocational and educational goals and develop the tools to successfully meet them. His mission is to ensure that no one stands alone in his or her recovery.

Meet Our Clinical Team

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Jess Beck, LCSW

Clinical Director

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Eric Chaghouri, MD


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Chloe Kruskol, LCSW

Family Program Manager

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