If you’re waking up in a daze, or if the thought of a fireworks exploding nearby has your head throbbing, you may be one of the many Americans who have spent the Fourth of July weekend drinking an alcoholic beverage (or several). celebrated together.
Maybe your mouth is dry. You might be feeling a little nauseous. You are probably very tired.
Whatever hangover symptoms are affecting you the most, you probably want to overcome them. Well, good news: they will.
Hangovers are only temporary, but their severity and length depend on the person – and how much they drank the night before.
Here’s what you need to know about hangovers—and how they go away.
Looking for Fourth of July fireworks? Make Sure You Know These State Laws
Waffle Hot Dog, Hot Dog Jello:Each State’s Most Uniquely Searched Hot Dog Variety
What Are Hangover Symptoms and Why Do We Get Them?
Hangovers are the result of heavy drinking and are characterized by the onset of several not-so-fun symptoms:
- mild dehydration
- disrupted sleep
- gastrointestinal irritation
- acetaldehyde exposure
That list is according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). , which also notes that it can be hard to estimate how many drinks it takes to provoke a hangover. It usually depends on the person.
“Any time people drink while intoxicated, there is a chance that they may have a hangover the next day,” organization.
saysThere are many, in fact. But they can all be attributed to the same culprit: alcohol.
Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it causes increased urination. This, in turn, causes dehydration. Which explains the thirst, fatigue, dry mouth and headache that wake you up after drinking all night, say experts.
Get everyone’s talking newsletter in your inbox. Stay up-to-date with
trending news What you need to know
fatigue could also be caused by a lack of quality sleep. Too many adult drinks can help you fall asleep quickly, but hangover symptoms can wake you up earlier than usualit harder for your body to regulate its own temperature.
makeA distended stomach can also be one of the more brutal symptoms of a hangover. Alcohol can affect your organs in two ways: It can irritate the lining of your stomach and intestines while also slowing down your digestive rate. According to the NIAAA, all of this can cause nausea.
Health officials say the malaise or general uneasiness you feel during a hangover can be triggered by swelling throughout the body, another effect of heavy drinking.
And finally, if you feel like a hangover affects your mental state, it could be the “mini-withdrawal” health officials indicate. Drinking alcohol can make some people feel more relaxed or euphoric, and the brain adjusts to maintain balance. But exercising restraint can eliminate those feelings, forcing the brain to re-adjust, leaving some with feelings of anxiety or restlessness.
What are some hangover ‘cures’ and do they really work?
You’ve probably heard of some so-called hangover remedies (or even tried them yourself): taking a shower, eating greasy foods, drinking coffee — or drinking too much alcohol.
Many of these tips don’t get the full seal of approval from health experts, but they can offer some tips to get you back to your normal self.
Hydrate: Drinking water when you wake up is a good start to combating hangover symptoms, experts say. Even drinking a glass the night before can help prevent the dehydrating effect. Sports drinks can aid in rehydration efforts while restoring electrolytes.
Eat: It can help get food into your body, as long as it’s the right food.
Health experts generally caution against the common legend of eating greasy, fatty foods when hungry. Eating fruit can help restore hydration, while salmon can help increase vitamin B6 and B12 levels.
Cleveland Clinic dietitian Julia Zampano recommends “bland” foods like bananas, rice, apple sauce and toast
. Sleep: Not getting enough sleep can affect your health despite alcohol consumption. Experts say that getting extra sleep after a night’s drinking can lessen the shock.
And most importantly, wait: Health officials agree that the only easy way to get rid of a hangover — other than not drinking alcohol in the first place — is time.
“There is no magic bullet, no miracle cure, to overcome a hangover. Your body has to capture and metabolize the alcohol you consumed,” says James Roach
Deal with some symptoms by rehydrating or taking a nap. Might help, but to be completely normal, you’re probably best suited to wait it out.
If you think you may be dealing with alcohol abuse and need help, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism provides resources for finding a cure.