Alcohol can cause many negative side effects and symptoms on its own. When it is mixed with other substances or medications, these effects can worsen, or new side effects may occur. Aleve, which is the brand name of the drug naproxen, is a common nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that can be obtained without a prescription.

Many people wonder if it is safe to use alcohol and Aleve at the same time. It’s worthwhile to understand information on Aleve, as well as what to be aware of regarding alcohol and Aleve.

Alcohol and Aleve Side Effects

Aleve inhibits the synthesis of certain hormones called prostaglandins. These hormones can cause inflammation and pain, so inhibiting their production decreases pain in the body. However, when prostaglandins aren’t produced, the protective lining of the stomach and intestines can be damaged. When a person’s stomach lining is damaged, they may develop ulcers or experience bleeding in the stomach or intestines.

The indirect effects of Aleve on the lining of the stomach intensify when alcohol and Aleve are combined.

It is important to realize that the negative and potentially harmful side effects of mixing alcohol and Aleve might not appear right away. Over time, the risk of adverse side effects goes up. The more alcohol and Aleve a person takes together, the more they risk developing severe gastritis (inflammation of the stomach) and stomach bleeding. For people over the age of 60, this risk is even higher.

When it comes to mixing alcohol and Aleve, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind, including:

  • Aleve can stay in the system for up to 12 hours.
  • Never mix alcohol and Aleve if you have a history of any gastrointestinal bleeding or ulcers.
  • Aleve should not be mixed with other NSAIDs. Multiple NSAIDs taken at the same time can increase the chances of stomach bleeding and gastritis.
  • Take Aleve only as directed. Following the prescribed dosage of Aleve is important if someone drinks alcohol regularly. If a person takes too much Aleve or takes it for too long, it can increase the likelihood of harmful consequences.
  • Talk to a doctor about Aleve and alcohol use. If a person is taking Aleve, they should consult with a doctor before drinking alcohol.

Key Points: Alcohol and Aleve

So, can you mix alcohol and Aleve? It’s advised that you don’t. Key points to remember about alcohol use and Aleve include:

  • Aleve increases your risk of gastritis or stomach bleeding
  • Alcohol will increase Aleve’s side effects
  • It is best to avoid using Aleve and alcohol at the same time

You should only ever use the recommended amount of Aleve for the recommended period of time, as well. If you have any questions about alcohol and Aleve, speak with your physician.

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Aleve.com. “FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: LABELING AND USAGE.” (n.d.) Accessed March 22, 2019.

Tresca, A. J. “NSAID’s and peptic ulcer risk” Verywell Health, 2018. Accessed March 22, 2019.