College memories may include your first day of freshman year, severe senioritis and a hangover from a night of drinking and partying with friends. Yet hangover symptoms such as headaches, nausea and dizziness can lead to memories you would rather forget. Symptoms are at their worst eight to 10 hours after drinking, and can be reduced or completely eliminated with a few tried and true cures.
Alcohol consumption depletes the body of necessary substances such as water, vitamins and minerals. As a result, a combination of water, generic aspirin and vitamins are vital cures. Take two multivitamins and two generic aspirins with a glass of water before going to sleep. Drink water throughout the night, and most importantly drink plenty of water before going to sleep and first thing after waking up. Avoid Ibuprofen, which contains substances that conflict with the alcohol in your body. Middle-of-the-night bathroom breaks should also include another trip to the refrigerator for another glass of water.
Follow these tips to help prevent or lessen hangover symptoms:
-Eat before you drink. Don’t drink on an empty stomach.
-Alternate between alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, such as water or fruit juice, to keep yourself hydrated.
-Have one drink per hour since your liver breaks down alcohol at the rate of one beer per hour.
-Choose your drink carefully. Darker drinks such as red wine, brandy and whisky have more toxins than lighter drinks such as white wine, vodka and gin.
-Females who drink right before menstruation are more likely to get drunk due to low estrogen levels.
-Get plenty of sleep the night after.
The severity of a hangover depends on the amount consumed, your age and your own reaction to the alcohol. There are several debatable cures, which work for some and not others. Sports drinks such as Gatorade and Powerade replenish your system while tangy drinks, such as tomato juice, reportedly prevent alcohol cravings. Drink these before going to sleep. Be careful of caffeinated beverages, including coffee, which increase urine flow and dehydration. Other remedies include honey, celery and tea. Although it may be tempting, more alcohol is never a cure. On the food side, eat BRAT (bananas, rice, applesauce and toast / crackers), mild foods that won’t upset your stomach.
Hangover pills, such as RU-21, have mixed results among users. Buying aspirin and vitamins from places such as a dollar store is more cost-efficient for college students who just spent a load of cash on alcohol. For more information on alcohol-related issues visit Campus Alcohol and Substance Awareness in Sullivan Hall.
Stephanie Young can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.