Drug and Alcohol Allergies

An allergy is when your body’s immune system overreacts on contact with a substance that typically poses little or no harm to most persons. A wide range of substances can cause allergic reactions, including alcoholic beverages and the medications that we take for health purposes.

Potential sources of alcohol allergies include ingredients, such as fruits or grains, preservatives, such as sulfites, or byproducts of the manufacturing process, such as histamines. (A similar but distinct condition, alcohol intolerance, has a genetic source.) Varied as well are the sources of drug allergies, and include antibiotics, insulin, anti-seizure medications, chemotherapy drugs, imaging dyes, and over-the-counter pain-relievers.

Reactions to drug and alcohol allergies range in severity from relative mild to life-threatening anaphylactic shock. Common symptoms include rashes, itchiness, troubled breathing, nausea, headaches, swelling, and diarrhea. If you believe that you suffer from either a drug or alcohol allergy, turn to Baptist Health.