November 01, 2021

Ten Hangover Cures (and Why Protecting Your Hearing is One of Them)

Ten Hangover Cures (and Why Protecting Your Hearing is One of Them)

Throughout the history of both humans and alcohol, strange and varied hangover cures have come and gone. Some of them are easier to stomach than others. Eating raw eels was a Medieval Europe solution. The National Hangover cure of Bolivia is bull penis soup, where the penis is served whole. One of the more dramatic 19th century cures was called “Goddards Drops” and was made of powder from the skull of someone recently hanged, dried viper, and ammonia. Who knows if our current hangover cures are any better, or will be read about in history with a cringe, but some of them have at least been studied and backed up with the science we know so far.


Drinking more. The idea is that if a hangover is a result of coming down off the alcohol, a little more will ease the landing. This is generally advised against (for one, it’s easy to misjudge and end up prolonging the hangover), but it’s also a time-honored remedy that many people still swear by.  


Carbs. Not just any carbs--starchy, dry, ready to soak up churning stomach acid and ease your blood sugar levels carbs. Make sure you eat carbs before, during and after. Bagels, fries, toast, even that egg sandwich (the added protein will help with recovery) is a good choice. 


Ibuprofen. Do not take acetaminophen for a hangover! Because acetaminophen is processed through the liver, which is already processing the alcohol, it will not reduce your symptoms and it can make it even worse. Ibuprofen reduces pain and inflammation and inflammation is a large part of a hangover. That is why certain alcohols will make a hangover worse for you--some liquors trigger a more inflammatory reaction than others. We all have a personal kryptonite drink, and it’s toxicity for you is probably because it makes you more inflamed than other kinds. Stick to ibuprofen to resolve those symptoms. 


Coffee or Black Tea. There is some risk in further dehydration (another big component of a hangover) but a small dose of caffeine in a strong cup of coffee or tea will help clear some of the exhaustion from the night before. 


A cold/vitamin packet. The next day, one of those little fizzy vitamin packs--the ones with vitamin B--will help restore the lost vitamins alcohol depletes from your system. It can also support your immune system, which is also lowered during drinking.   


Water. Before you go out, put a filled water bottle by your door and your bed. While out, alternate one glass of water for every glass of alcohol. Drink those bottles as you get home and go to sleep. Consider adding a low-sugar electrolyte drink or coconut water to help replenish essential minerals as well as hydration. The more you hydrate the easier the recovery will go. 


Red Ginseng. The tea made from red ginseng has been proven to reduce the effects of a hangover as well as the levels of alcohol that might be lingering in your blood. You can find red ginseng tea online or in your local asian food store.


Prickly Pear. Another plant remedy that’s been shown to cut the risk of a hangover in half and otherwise reduce the symptoms. Some places have even started mixing this extract into their margaritas! 


Ginger. This root combines anti-inflammatory properties with stomach soothing effects, packing a one-two punch at the worst of hangover symptoms. 


EarPeace. Not only will using EarPeace during a hangover headache help to lessen the pain of noise, but wearing them while out can prevent damage in the first place. Drinking, and the environments where drinking occurs, make you susceptible to hearing damage, which impacts your relationships and your health. Drinking itself can actually change the environment in your ears, potentially damaging the hair cells inside your ears, which cannot be regenerated. Tinnitus can happen when the blood volume of your inner ear changes from drinking. And all of those changes can make your ears even more susceptible to damage from the loud atmosphere. “Cocktail deafness” is actually a term used to describe the temporary threshold shift from loud music and clubs where it can take time for your hearing to go back to normal. 


As always, be safe while drinking--take care of yourself, your body and your hearing. There are some things you can’t get back!

Read more about Mental Health, Hearing Loss And The Hidden Cost Of Covid-19



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