We have all been there, the morning after a night out lying on the bathroom floor cursing at last nights self. It happens and when you’re twenty one you can usually pop some ibuprofen drink a Gatorade and start the day. But as I’m getting older, I find that sometimes three glasses of wine can put me in a three-day-long hangover, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There are ten simple ways I’ve discovered that will help you survive that hangover.
This is the single most important thing to remember after drinking too much. Your body is completely depleted of all of its nutrients and water and sloshing around in your stomach is a bunch of liquor with nothing else. Whether it’s water, Gatorade, Pedialyte, or coconut water, start putting something in your stomach as soon as you wake up, or even better — before you fall asleep. Staying as hydrated as possible will help to end your hangover so it doesn’t last all day. Cranberry or Pomegranate juice can also be really beneficial since they are both have antioxidants and will help with all the chemicals in your body. But if you were drinking cranberry vodka the night before you may want to stay away from the cranberry juice until your stomach settles some more.
2. Greasy Food
I am typically a very healthy eater, but I know that if I’m hungover, I need greasy food and I need it as soon as possible. In fact, me eating a cheeseburger was a dead giveaway that I was hungover but it was also a sign that I was about to come back to life. Fried potatoes, hash browns or fries are something plain that even the most nauseous person can put down and are a good starter until you can stomach something else. Make a McDonald’s run in the morning so that by dinner time you can opt for a healthier meal. Spinach, bananas, fish are all things that can help with a hangover but you probably won’t want first thing in the morning, so take in all those greasy calories so you can start feeling better.
Excedrine is my go-to medicine for headaches. If you can take this the night before, it may help ease the pain when you are first waking up, but once you eat a little something you’ll want to pop a few of these to help with the pounding head. Excedrine or any medicine with acetaminophen are typically a better choice than ibuprofen or Advil, as those tend to upset stomachs. Typically taking these with alcohol can damage your stomach so only take these if that hangover is just unbearable and the alcohol is out of your system.
No matter how hungover, sick, sad, or just generally unwell I am, a shower always makes me feel better. Especially after a night of drinking in crowded, smokey bars, taking a shower will literally wash away all those gross smells from last night that keep making you nauseous. If you have a headache, a cold shower will probably feel good on your pulsating head. Once you shower, you’ll feel physically and mentally better.
While you’re showering, brew yourself a pot of coffee. I used to avoid coffee after drinking for fear of getting more dehydrated than I already was, but once I tried it, I felt like a new person. I am a big coffee drinker, so my body is used to coffee in the morning, and my hangovers were exasperated the next day from not having coffee. I had such an intense hangover one time where my eyes hurt so bad from my headache and I had tried water and greasy foods and it wasn’t until I had coffee that I not only felt better but I felt amazing. I felt better that morning than I had on the mornings that I hadn’t drank the night before. The caffeine boost will give you enough added energy from last night’s lack of sleep that you’ll forget you only got five hours of rest.
Now, this is one I have never tried myself but my sister and friends swear by. After nights of drinking, they go out for a several miles run. I couldn’t ever fathom wanting to exert my body after a night of drinking but I have never seen them have a hangover. When you exercise after drinking, you literally sweat out all of the toxins from the night before so that by the time you’re done with your workout you’ll have nothing left to make you feel hungover. If you do try this remedy, make sure you also drink lots of water so that what you sweat out, you replenish or else you may have a massive dehydration headache the next day.
Cool air when you’re nauseous will help you to breath better and calm your body down. If it’s nice enough go outside or open a window and just breath in the cool air. If it’s too humid or cold out, turn on a fan and get some air circulating. Staying in a stagnant, dry room will only make you feel worse. After filling your organs with questionable liquids, you’ll want to breathe in the fresh air.
8. Sparkling Drink
No, not a sparkling alcoholic drink — put the champagne down. By this, I mean sparkling water or a soft drink — something nonalcoholic but carbonated. The fizz can help settle your stomach and release all the pent up air in your body. I always go for a Sprite, not too much flavor that it will make you feel sick but just enough to calm your nausea. If you’re looking for a healthier option, sparkling water will hydrate you and give you the fizz of a soda. It’s a win, win.
There are times where this may not be an option. If you drank too much on a work night, you may not have this luxury. However, if you can sleep, that’s your best option, especially for the hangovers that you really can’t shake. Part of the reason people feel so bad when they’re hungover is that your body doesn’t sleep well with alcohol in its system so you’re not always hitting a full REM cycle. People also tend to stay up much later when drinking, so on top of drinking, you’re also losing sleep. I find that anytime I drink, my body naturally wakes up earlier than usual, and even if I can sleep on that day, my body won’t let me. So after trying all the other remedies, if I still feel bad, I try to take a nap and when I wake up I always feel so much better.
The best way to survive a hangover is to not get one in the first place. Drinking lots of water and having a good full meal before drinking are great ways to help yourself before you wreck yourself. It’s fun every now and then to go out and have some drinks, but it’s better to know that you won’t ruin your entire next day. Drinking clear liquors usually will give you less of a hangover since there are less artificial ingredients, and I don’t include White Claws in that category. Sticking to the same kinds of drinks will help. The whole beer before liquor mantra may not be true but mixing multiple kinds of beer and liquor will only make your stomach upset and can cause you to get sick.
I always make sure that I stock up on a good combination of greasy and nutritious foods so I can have them the next day. And I always have water next to my bed so I can have it when I come home. There’s nothing worse than ruining the memory of a fun night with the memory of a killer hangover.
What have you found to be the best way to survive a hangover? Which remedy above have you tired? Comment below other ways to help survive a hangover!
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MARIA HEHMAN IS A GRADUATE OF THOMAS MORE COLLEGE, WHERE SHE OBTAINED A BACHELOR'S OF ARTS IN ENGLISH, WITH AN EMPHASIS IN CREATIVE WRITING. SHE WORKS AS A MANAGER IN RETAIL AND DOES FREELANCE WRITING IN HER SPARE TIME. HER WRITING TOPIC WITH SOCIETY19 VARY, BUT FASHION IS HER GREATEST INTEREST. YOU CAN FIND HER MOST DAYS DRINKING ENTIRELY TOO MUCH COFFEE WHILE WATCHING HER FAVORITE SHOW, FRIENDS.