The Difference Between Being Drunk and Being High on Lortab

The Difference Between Being Drunk and Being High on LortabAlcohol and Lortab are both drugs, and both can be misused. One is a legal beverage while the other is available by prescription to manage pain symptoms. However while one is legal and one has an important medical role, either can be misused to produce drunkenness or a high. The effects of these chemicals are similar in some ways, as both are addictive depressants that affect the central nervous system, yet they are also different in terms of effects and use-related dangers.

How Does Alcohol Work?

When you drink more alcohol than your liver can metabolize, ethanol molecules begin to stick to GABA and other neurotransmitter molecules. When GABA receptors are activated, they slow the brain down. This is why alcohol makes users feel calm and relaxed at first. Ethanol molecules also affect other neurotransmitters such as NMDA which is responsible for many memory functions. When individuals drink too much, they often forget many details or “black out” entire portions of a night. The effect of excess ethanol is an overall slowing of the central nervous system. This results in physical and mental sluggishness, the reason it is not safe to drink and drive and why many accidents occur while individuals are drunk. Motor control and speech become impaired, and continued drinking can result in drastically reduced and potentially fatal lung and heart function.

How Does Lortab Work?

As a central nervous system depressant, Lortab works in much the same was as alcohol. It binds to neurotransmitter receptors that control movement and mood, and while low doses interrupt the neurotransmitters that communicate pain, higher doses begin to slow many of the body’s functions. As with alcohol, this impairs speech, coordination and reaction time. It can also lead to fatally slowed heart and breath rates.

Signs of Drug Abuse

Since alcohol abuse and Lortab abuse share many features and effects, it stands to reason that signs of abuse and addiction will be similar between the two. Some signs of potential drug abuse include the following:

  • Lack of energy, inability to concentrate
  • Social or behavioral changes
  • Use in dangerous situations
  • Continuing to use despite legal or relationship problems related to consumption
  • Using in response to stress or emotions

If your loved one is expressing some or all of these symptoms, or if you are worried about your own alcohol or Lortab use, do not put off getting help. Call our helpline and speak with a caring admissions coordinator about your concerns. All phone services are free and confidential, and we can help you assess your current situation and find the resources that meet your unique needs. We are here 24 hours a day to connect you to interventionists, therapists, treatment programs or can simply provide more information about drug abuse and what the signs you see in yourself or a loved one may mean.