Generally, it takes 8 to 24 hours to come out from hangover due to heavy drinking. Hangovers are a frequent, though unpleasant, experience among people who drink to intoxication. Despite the prevalence of hangovers, however, this condition is not well understood scientifically.
Direct effects of alcohol during hangover:
- Electrolyte imbalance
- Gastrointestinal disturbances
- Low blood sugar
- Sleep and biological rhythm disturbances
Symptoms of hangover:
1. Constitutional: Fatigue, weakness, and thirst
2. Pain: Headache and muscle aches
3. Gastrointestinal: Nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain
4. Sleep and biological rhythms: Decreased sleep, decreased REM (rapid eye movement),and increased slow-wave sleep
5. Sensory: Vertigo and sensitivity to light and sound
6. Cognitive: Decreased attention and concentration
7. Mood: Depression, anxiety, and irritability
8. Sympathetic hyperactivity: Tremor, sweating, and increased pulse and systolic blood pressure
Suggestions to handle hangover:
- Drink plenty of water between cocktails. In case you did not drink water during your cocktail party, then drink plenty of water after your party and next day. Alcohol dehydrates body and drinking water helps to retain the body fluid.
- Drink buttermilk: Drinking buttermilk helps to reduce the handover effect. Buttermilk or yogurt supplies carbohydrates that is needed for the body.
- Head spinning, headache, vomiting and feeling weak is another symptom of hangover. Drink other fluids -coconut water, lemon juice, soup and electrolyte rich fluids to get over hang over and to get back strength.
- Try this recipe to reduce and come out of hangover: Stir 1 teaspoon of salt and 8 teaspoons of sugar into 5 cups of water. Whisk in ½ cup orange juice or ¼ cup mashed banana. Sip the mixture slowly throughout the day, storing it in a cool place. This drink is good for next 24 hours when stored properly.
- Eat sugar while drinking or have some orange juice between drinks. Fructose helps in alcohol metabolism and reduces hangover effect. Consumption of fruits, fruit juices, or other fructose-containing foods is reported to decrease hangover intensity. Banans and kiwi fruits are rich in potassium and helps in metabolism.
- To avoid hangover before going to a party drink a spoonful of olive oil. Olive oil reduces hangover by sticking in stomach as fat for a longtime.
- Eat some fatty food like pizza, chips or something that has fat content will help to absorb alcohol slow in the body.
- Next day morning after hangover party day, do not skip breakfast. Eat cereals or bread. This will make you feel more normal in stomach. Or eat crackers or toast that supply more carbohydrates.
- To reduce nausea and vomiting eat ginger or ginger candy after drinking.
- Avoid alcohol on an empty stomach. Food helps to slow down the rate your body absorbs alcohol.
- If the hangover is too much get a long nap. Body needs to heal from all the drinking stress.
- Do not drink coffee during hangover as it may cause migraine and nausea. Caffeine content makes the hangover worsen.
- Never sit in sauna to get over from hangover. More dehydration causes stress on blood vessels and blood flow!
- The type of alcohol consumed also may have a significant effect on reducing hangover – understand which brand/type of alcohol is good for you and how much quantity.
- There is myth that drinking more alcohol -“hair of the dog that bit you” – remedy – does not work on people who are experiencing a hangover and they should avoid further drinking.
Remember: In research, “moderate drinking” is defined as two drinks a day. More than five in one sitting is considered “heavy drinking.” It is better to avoid heavy drinking if your body does not feel right. You know your body and you should respect your body and the aging process it is going through. Attentiveness to the quantity and quality of alcohol consumed can have a significant effect on preventing hangover. Take a right decision to keep up good health.