Hangover Symptoms and How to Avoid Them

As many people prepare to celebrate New Years, some donâ??t prepare for the morning after, which for the most part include a hangover. Dr. Justin Puckett from Complete Family Medicine stopped by the set of Good Morning Heartland to tell us how to avoid those pesky hangovers. WATCH VIDEO to learn more.

Question: What causes a hang-over?

  • Simple, alcohol poisoning

  • The alcohol causes blood vessels in the brain to dilate which can cause headache. Also, alcohol can cause neurotransmitters in the brain to change levels quickly, which can contribute to the HA.

  • Dehydration: Alcohol causes you to lose water by decreasing a natural hormone the body has to help keep you from losing too much water. Vomiting, sweating, and diarrhea can make things worse too.

  • Sleep deprivation. While many people claim that a drink might help them sleep, it isnâ??t the good REM sleep we need to get rested.

  • Question: What are the common hangover symptoms?

    Question: Is there anything people can do to prevent a hangover?

  • Drink water or other non-alcoholic beverage between each drink, helps decrease not only the amount you drink, but also helps to counter dehydration?

  • Drink clear beer or simple liquors, many things that are deeply colored contain a variety of additional chemicals that can worsen or trigger effects of alcohol.

  • Donâ??t drink on an empty stomach. Also a fatty meal slows alcohol absorption and is better to have before (the eat pasta myth is a myth, but better than nothing)

  • Get plenty of sleep

  • Donâ??t over exert (dance)

  • We arenâ??t sure why, but fruit juices and sugary drinks tend less the effects better than diet colas

  • Treat alcohol servings as equivalents, 12 oz for beer, 5 for wine, and 1.5 (shot) for hard liquors.

  • Over the counter Pain Killers: Donâ??t help, avoid the night before, save them for the next morning as their half life is short. Avoid Tylenol all together.

  • Question: What about after?

  • Use NSAIDS for symptoms

  • Avoid the morning drink; all that does is postpone the inevitable.

  • Avoid Coffee, drink more water or sport drinks with electrolytes.

  • Question: Are there any differences in women and men when drinking?

    Yes, men can generally drink more with fewer problems than women, as women have less body water to dilute the alcohol.

    Question: What are some signs or symptoms that might alert someone that the problem is more than just a hangover?

    Alcohol poisoning is a life-threatening emergency. Symptoms include:

    It's easy to blow off these symptoms as the price of partying hard, but if you see someone vomit multiple times or pass out after drinking heavily, thereâ??s a risk of severe dehydration or brain damage. Call 911.

    MYTH: Hangovers Are No Big Deal.

    FACT: Heavy drinking rocks the central nervous system. It tinkers with brain chemicals -- leading to headache, dizziness, and nausea -- and sends you running to the bathroom so often you become dehydrated. The morning-after price can include a pounding headache, fatigue, cotton mouth, queasy stomach -- and a weakened immune system.

    If you find it hard to resists alcohol, or ever time you drink you go to excess, you may need to talk to your healthcare professional about your drinking habits. If you have trouble quitting on your own, your doctor can help.

    Dr. Justin Puckett, DO

    Complete Family Medicine

    1611 S. Baltimore St.

    Kirksville, MO. 63501