Let’s face it, we’ve all faced the infamous hangover headache and for some, it can make the difference between a productive day ahead or having to spend the rest of the weekend in bed. So, is there really anything you can do about or to prevent this headache (you know, besides the obvious solution of not drinking)? We’re going to take a look at the best solutions when it comes to preventing or banishing altogether your after drinks headache.
Why do we get a headache after a night out?
The reason for this is simple and it mainly comes down to a fun little alcohol-related side effect called dehydration. Fun fact, running to the bathroom to pee all night is actually contributing to dehydrating you. Drinking too much alcohol also causes your blood vessels to dilate which is another reason for that after-drinks headache.
So, what are the best solutions?
Most hangover symptoms generally go away anywhere from eight to 24 hours but if you don’t have time to wait, here are some effective solutions to speed it along.
1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Yes, yes, we know it sounds dull but hydration can often be key to avoiding that after-drinks headache. Ideally, you should make sure that you’re hydrating as much as possible before bed. The best solution is to drink one glass of water per one standard-sized drink you consume. We feel like we might be getting a big eye roll on that one but this is truthfully one of the best ways to prevent a hangover. Hydrating as soon as you wake up the next morning is essential, too, at the very least minimizing, you're after-drinks headache. While water is obviously the first choice in terms of hydration, there are a couple of other options out there that can be just as beneficial. Pedialyte is famous for being a go-to hangover cure as it’s specifically meant for fast hydration and is formulated with just the right balance of sugar and electrolytes. Plus, it’s known for decreasing nausea and vomiting, two other unfortunately prominent hangover symptoms. Although Gatorade is another drink that is proven to be effective due to its electrolytes, it may have a little too much sugar in it for optimal hydration – consider mixing it with water.
2. Go back to bed
After thoroughly hydrating, take a nice, long nap. Have you ever gotten up in the morning after a night of drinking, had a ridiculous hangover headache, and went back to sleep, only for it to have significantly improved by the time you wake up again? While lack of sleep doesn’t have anything to do with your headache, we all know that sleep is your body’s natural way of healing. So, after you’ve thoroughly hydrated, keep your hydration drink of choice by your bedside table and have a good, long nap. You can hold us personally responsible if you don’t feel at all better afterward (on second thought, please don’t).
3. Preventative supplements
Did you know that they are supplements available that can not only help treat hangover side effects such as headaches but also prevent them? RaveAid is a dietary supplement that is meant to reduce or prevent the comedown after a night out. This comedown can include nausea, dizziness, lack of energy, general slowness, and of course, headaches, among other things. Rave Aid supplements contain magnesium specifically to support the immune system as well as assist in healthy hydration. They can also be taken up to three days leading up to an event, the day of, and up to three days after an event where you know there’s a possibility of a hangover. Rave Aid supplements aren’t only good for preventing and treating headaches but they also contain ingredients like Vitamins C, E, B3, B6, 5-HTP and co-enzyme Q10 to protect your body’s cells from damage, provide antioxidants to boost your immune system, and promote rapid recovery.
4. Put ice in your drink
This, again, goes along with the whole idea of hydration, the main cause of your hangover headache. While, yes, the addition of melted down ice cubes may only make a small difference in the hydration department, it will also prevent you from pouring yourself a full glass of alcohol (which is the whole reason why you’re in this predicament in the first place). Therefore, ice can be the physical barrier that you never really thought of when it comes to pacing yourself.
5. Don’t drink beer
While you may be surprised that we’re not advising you to avoid hard liquor. Drinking beer all night will likely ruin your chances of even entertaining the idea of hydrating in between drinks. Drinking beer makes you feel too full to feel like you have room for water, setting you up for failure right from the beginning. So, if you’re in a situation where you know you’re going to end up drinking the night away, consider switching to something else so you don’t wake up with a wicked headache the next day.
6. Water it down
Where possible, watering down liquor is a great idea when it comes to preventing a hangover headache. The repeating factor here is, of course, hydration, and watering down your drink with actual water or even with tonic water or soda will help in keeping you hydrated. While soda isn’t the most hydrating beverage that you can consume, especially soda that contains caffeine, it is better than not watering down your drink at all.While the obvious solution to avoiding post-drinks headaches is not drinking at all, sometimes you know that’s just not going to happen. Keeping the next day from being a total write off is 100% about staying on top of your hydration. While hydration is not necessarily the most “fun” thing to think about on a night out, it certainly might save you a good few hours of that dull, achy pain.