A hangover can be described as the various not-so-pleasant effects on the mind and the body that occur due to an abundant consumption of alcoholic drinks. It is caused by excessive alcohol drinking at one time, and is dependent on each person’s tolerance level for the same. It can be based on the height, weight, and the genetics of a person. There is no cure for hangover but there are a few simple home quickies that can help make you feel much better.
Generally, hangover symptoms last only about 24 hours. Mixing drinks can cause hangovers. The main cause of a hangover is dehydration and that can be minimized by drinking plenty of water. A headache is a symptom of dehydration and may be eased with pain relievers and by drinking too much of water.
- Make sure to include a high protein breakfast in the morning to replenish most of the damage done by alcohol.
- Don’t have an alcoholic drink in the morning as a cure for a hangover. Another drink does not help and may only make your hangover worse.
- Alcohol causes dehydration, so drink plenty of water or have oral rehydration fluids. Also drink fresh fruit juices and tomato juice, if possible
- Avoid coffees and any other caffeinated beverages as they can cause further dehydration. Some people think that having a cup of coffee will help to drive away the hangover which is not true at all.
- Take vitamin C, as it may increase the rate of alcohol breakdown in the body. Drink some orange juice, because vitamin C speeds up the metabolism of the alcohol by the liver
- Alcohol consumption can irritate your stomach lining so avoid aspirin and ibuprofen since they may only serve to increase this irritation. Peppermint may also help for an upset stomach. Antacid preparations in liquid form and Domperidon 1 tab. may help in reducing stomach irritations and vomiting
Prevention of the hangover in the future
- Never drink on an empty stomach. Food delays absorption of alcohol and aids the body in digesting it faster. Try to eat starchy foods to slow down the alcohol absorption.
- Limit yourself to less than 1 drink per hour.
- Try to alternate your alcoholic drinks with non-alcoholic beverages such as water.
- Stick to non-carbonated drinks as carbonation can speed up the alcohol absorption.
- Try to avoid sweet drinks (and sugary foods) while you drink. The sweet taste of the drink can make it difficult for you to judge how much alcohol you’re actually consuming.
- Be sure to choose drinks with low levels of cogeners (light drinks such as white wines, gin, and vodka)–these are additives that are found in alcohol that increase your risk of a hangover. Dark-colored drinks (such as red wine, bourbon, and rum) have higher levels of cogeners and should be avoided in case; one is prone to have severe hangovers.
- Drink lots of water before you go to bed.
- Take plenty of rest and sleep, this will make you recover normal body functions.
“Also remember never to mix drinking and driving. The person (in a group) who is to drive should avoid drinking” warns Dr. Verinder Anand, Consultant, Internal Medicine, Moolchand Medcity, New Delhi
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