It’s no secret that college students tend to drink alcohol, and therefore, often have firsthand experience with hangovers. Universities across the country have implemented programs or campaigns geared towards teaching students to be safe and responsible when drinking alcohol. The University of Maryland is home to an alcohol awareness campaign known asThe Gold Code, which consists of a list of 4 behaviors students should follow to stay safe if they choose to drink. These behaviors are: - Pregame with protein - Pace don’t race - Leave no terp behind - Sober is safest But even if students are exceedingly safe, a hangover is still an annoying possibility. TheMayo Clinic describes a hangover as “a group of unpleasant signs and symptoms that can develop after drinking too much alcohol.” For most, these symptoms consist of migraines and extreme nausea, which usually occur the morning after a night out and typically last for a few hours.
Though hangovers may seem like an annoying and painful end to what was hopefully a great night, they are entirely preventable even if you choose to drink alcohol.
“The best thing to do in terms of hangover prevention is to be mindful of your drinking behaviors the night before. Many of the symptoms of hangovers are directly linked to dehydration because alcohol is a beverage that dehydrates you as you drink it. So if you choose to drink, something that can be helpful is to alternate alcoholic beverages with water, as well as to set a limit to how much alcohol you’ll consume in one sitting,” said Madeleine Moore, the Alcohol and Other Drug Education Program coordinator at UMD’s health center.
Sometimes, the only thing standing between you and a hangover-free after party is the pregame. Like the Gold Code says, “pace don’t race” and “pregame with protein.” Eating the right things and making sure you do not go overboard can protect you from a difficult morning after. But if you forgot a thought-out pregame, then drinking water and taking a few ibuprofen is the most common solution to a painful hangover, according to Moore.
Other, less popular solutions range from drinking pickle juice or black tea to having a Starbucks Frappuccino. People also come up with their own at-home “cures” for hangovers, and a google search will tell you that those “cures” are typically some sort of green drink or a combination of foods you would not otherwise think of.
It’s no secret that college students drink, college is the limbo between childhood and adult life, so students often use this time to let loose. For that reason, among others, if you choose to go out drinking you should be prepared if you wake up after a night out with a migraine and a strong desire to vomit.
“I will usually eat bread to help my stomach a little… then lots of water and two tabs of ibuprofen. For extreme cases, I have Gatorade handy, it helps with hydration and electrolytes. But my best strategy is, when I get home from a party, I will down at least two glasses of water before going to bed. That usually makes my mornings easier,” said senior astronomy and physics double major Valentina Petroni.
There is no shortage of ways to get through a nasty hangover, from pickle juice to a couple of ibuprofen tablets. What works for you might not work for the next person; every hangover is different.
Roughly 80% of college students consume alcohol to some degree, according to a study by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcohol published by theWashington Post. The majority of those students will experience a hangover at least once in their life, so it’s best to be prepared for how to deal with it.
“I like to eat a good breakfast, usually with eggs and some sort of bread like a bagel or toast, and take a shower,” said Alicia Goodwin, a junior government and politics and art history double major at UMD.
Whether it be a well-thought-out pregame or a morning-after routine, it is important to find a hangover cure that works for you, and stick to it, because when it comes to hangover cures, there is no “one size fits all” method.