Antabuse is not an addictive medication; it is a part of a group of medications called “antidipsotropic medications” that are designed to have an anti-drinking effect. When combined with alcohol, Antabuse produces unpleasant and severe reactions: lowered blood pressure, nausea, and vomiting. The primary goal is to develop an aversion towards alcohol, and help individuals suffering from chronic alcoholism cease drinking for good.

Antabuse (the commercialized name for disulfiram) was the first medication approved by the FDA to treat alcoholism. It is prescribed to alcoholic patients and is intended to be used in conjunction with other kinds of treatments, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, psychotherapy, counseling sessions, and support groups. It is also used as an alcohol deterrent, meaning that when you take Antabuse, you become physically ill if you consume alcohol. Antabuse works by interrupting the usual alcohol metabolism in the body, resulting in increased levels of acetaldehyde in the bloodstream and many other negative effects. Some of the side effects experienced from mixing ethyl alcohol and disulfiram include:


  • Decreased blood pressure


  • Increased heart rate


  • Sweating


  • Nausea


  • Vomiting

The active ingredient present within Antabuse is disulfiram, an alcohol antagonist drug. Each Antabuse tablet is solely meant for oral administration and contains 250mg or 500mg of disulfiram. The other ingredients in Antabuse pills are stearic acid, colloidal silicon dioxide, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, anhydrous lactose, and sodium starch glycolate. People who use Antabuse do not develop a dependence on, or addiction to, disulfiram. As for now, there are no withdrawal symptoms associated with discontinuing its use. 

Alcoholism is a specific kind of addiction. A wide range of psychological, sociocultural, biological, and spiritual reasons help us understand why people become addicted to alcohol. Alcoholics have a skewed ability to limit alcohol use on their own due to relying on it to function normally; they feel a physical compulsion to drink. Typically, they continue their habit despite awareness of the harmful and dangerous consequences. Antabuse makes drinking an extremely unsatisfying experience; instead of receiving all of the good feelings from alcohol, only the toxic reactions of acetaldehyde are felt.

At Asana Recovery, we empathize with the level of difficulty associated with recovering from these addictions;  our daily work helps us assist and peek into the lives of those struggling most from the disease. Although the journey ahead is not smooth or without trials, it can be completed with the support of a good team. Aftercare and counseling processes can aid you in addressing all of the factors that lead you towards addiction, and help you establish more productive habits to better manage life without the burden of substance abuse. 


The supervised detoxification and in house treatment programs are given here at Asana Recovery take place in a caring and supportive environment. We are committed to assuring you of a life long recovery and leading you on the path to a much brighter future. Give us a call today, at (949) 438-4504 to learn more about our alcohol and drug addiction treatment program.


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