The Hangover: Causes, Symptoms, and Remedies

A hangover, or acute alcoholism in technical terms, is a physiological state induced by excessive alcohol consumption. This condition occurs when alcohol accumulates in the blood at a faster rate than it can be metabolized by the liver. Here will delve into the causes, symptoms, and remedies of hangovers, providing readers with valuable insights into this common aftermath of excessive drinking.

Understanding the Causes and Symptoms

The intensity of hangover symptoms is proportional to the amount of alcohol consumed. However, the response to alcohol varies among individuals based on factors such as sex, weight, genetic predisposition, drinking habits, and concurrent intake of medications, drugs, and food.

Despite the subjective variability of symptoms, common hangover indicators include: vomiting, general malaise, extreme fatigue, mental confusion, agitation, neck pain, ringing in the ears, headache, bad breath, speech disorders, red eyes, balance disorders, stomach ache, gastric acidity, and dehydration.

Remedial Measures

What to Do

  1. Hydrate: Drinking plenty of water is essential after a hangover. Water aids in rehydration and helps restore fluids lost due to alcohol. Good hydration also promotes the elimination of small quantities of ethanol through sweat and urine.
  2. Eat a healthy breakfast: Consuming a meal rich in carbohydrates and fruits is advisable as blood sugar levels are usually low during a hangover.
  3. Engage in light physical activity: If the hangover is mild, light outdoor walks can be beneficial.
  4. Use an orthopedic pillow: This can help alleviate neck pain caused by excessive alcohol consumption.
  5. Seek medical advice: If there's a risk of developing alcohol dependence, it's important to consult with a healthcare professional.

What NOT to Do

  1. Avoid alcohol: This includes not drinking alcohol if you feel the first signs of a hangover.
  2. Avoid driving: Never operate a vehicle after drinking alcohol.
  3. Avoid painkillers: Many painkillers can have side effects at the gastric and hepatic level.
  4. Avoid light clothing in cold weather: Hangovers promote vasodilation, which increases body heat dispersion and the risk of hypothermia.
  5. Avoid strenuous exercise: Exercising after a hangover can lead to dehydration and hypoglycemia.
  6. Avoid breastfeeding: It's not safe to breastfeed after a hangover.

Dietary Considerations

What to Eat

  1. Fruits and vegetables
  2. Dry foods: Crackers and biscuits can help alleviate nausea.
  3. Honey
  4. B-vitamin supplements: These can help replenish the B vitamins expended in the detoxification of ethanol.

What NOT to Eat

  1. Hard-to-digest foods: Avoid fried foods and foods rich in fat after a hangover.
  2. Stimulant drinks: Coffee and cola can irritate the stomach lining and worsen dehydration.

Natural Remedies

Herbal teas made from ginger, fennel, lemon balm, and chamomile can help control nausea and vomiting. Facial masks prepared with cucumber can freshen up a tired appearance.

Pharmacological Treatments

While natural remedies can be effective, some plants with hepatoprotective properties, such as artichoke and milk thistle, can also be helpful. However, it's essential to remember that symptoms will only vanish once all the alcohol present in the blood is metabolized by the liver.


  1. Limit alcohol intake: The acceptable dose should not exceed 30-40 g per day.
  2. Avoid drinking on an empty stomach
  3. Avoid mixing alcohol with drugs or substances of abuse

Medical Treatments

Medical intervention is usually not necessary unless the hangover is severe. In extreme cases, gastric lavage or intravenous administration of fluids and electrolytes may be required. If alcohol becomes addictive, a different treatment approach is necessary, including medical therapy for alcohol detoxification and psychological treatment.

In conclusion, while a hangover is a temporary condition, it's important to treat it properly and take steps to prevent future occurrences. If you or someone you know struggles with regular hangovers or alcohol dependence, don't hesitate to seek professional help.

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The Wellyme Team

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