4 Drug Combinations That Can Be Accidentally Lethal

TIME

Nearly 28 percent of adults ages 20 to 59 hold multiple drug prescriptions at any given time, per Centers for Disease Control data. In some cases, double (or tripling) up is necessary—but the wrong combo could have critical consequences, says epidemiologist Leonard Paulozzi, M.D., M.P.H. Beware these potentially toxic matches, and always ask your doctor before mixing. And definitely check out our must-read article about accidental overdoses, a problem plaguing a scarily high number of women each year: The Silent and Growing Health Danger That All Women Need to Know About.

SSRIS + Opioids (antidepressants + painkillers)

Some antidepressants work by increasing brain levels of the “happy hormone” serotonin. Certain painkillers can have the same effect—leading to way too much of a good thing. Sky-high serotonin levels can cause agitation, high body temperature, and rapid heart and breathing rates.

Opioids + Benzodiazepines (painkillers + anti-anxiety meds)

Both types of drugs…

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