Alcohol Use and Older Adults

Frequently Asked Questions

20. What medicines are available to treat people with alcohol use disorder?

Prescription medicines can help people with alcohol use disorder reduce their drinking, avoid going back to heavy drinking, and get sober. None of them works in every person.

There are three medications approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of alcohol use disorder.

  • Naltrexone (Depade®, ReVia®, Vivitrol®) acts in the brain to reduce craving for alcohol
  • Acamprosate (Campral®) helps manage withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, nausea, and sweating that may lead to a drinking relapse
  • Disulfiram (Antabuse®) makes a person feel sick after drinking alcohol.