Regretting having had too much to drink? You can now sober up and reduce the effects of alcohol by taking some simple measures and doing a few things.
If you have been partying and consumed more alcohol than you can handle, you might want to get rid of a high for various reasons. The reasons could range from
- Wanting to avoid or reduce that horrible headache and other symptoms of a hangover
- Having to sober up before heading home
- To avoid that peculiar smell of alcohol on your breath
- If you have an important engagement the next day
The reasons could vary from one person to another. But the primary factor here is that one must avoid such a situation arising in the very first place.
It is important for an individual to be aware of what and how much they are drinking. Having a grip on any situation is crucial. Even if one is consuming alcohol, drinking responsibly is extremely crucial.
Ways To Reduce The Effects Of Alcohol
Let us now consider some simple steps that have been proven to help reduce the effects of alcohol considerably.
1. Be Careful While You Drink
Even before you step out to enjoy your drinks, one must bear in mind to keep a check on how much they are going to drink. Careless drinking will only lead to troubles. So be prepared by taking simple precautionary measures.
Eat before you drink
When you drink on an empty stomach, the alcohol simply stays in your stomach and gets absorbed directly into the bloodstream. This shoots up the effects of alcohol. To avoid this, one must eat before they plan to drink. So when there is food in your stomach the alcohol gets absorbed more steadily than shooting up into the blood stream. This immediately reduces the effects of alcohol.
Never gulp down your drinks
This is again to avoid alcohol getting absorbed suddenly in your blood. If you nurse your drinks for longer the effects of alcohol will be steady and will not cause sudden highs.
If you inundate the body with large sips of alcohol at frequent intervals, it makes it more difficult for the body to process the alcohol.
Choose your drinks wisely
If you are planning to reduce the effects of alcohol, you must begin with choosing your drinks responsibly. Always opt for drinks that have lesser congeners which are the by-products during the process of fermentation. These congeners are the factors that are known to increase the symptoms of a hangover.
You can opt for light colored drinks like a Light Beer, White Wine, which have lesser congeners and so lesser scope for a nasty hangover. You must stay away from Brandy, Whiskey or Red wines which are high on congeners. Choosing clear drinks like a Gin, Vodka, and White Rum is also a good option.
Yet another factor that one must avoid is cheap booze. As they have more impurities which tend to leave behind bad symptoms of a hangover. Your body has to spend more energy trying to process the alcohol with more impurities.
2. Hydrate Yourself Well
Drink plenty of water
When planning on drink binging in the evening, your day must involve consuming lots of water. You must drink water even between your drinks. This is simply because drinking alcohol tends to dehydrate your body. And one of the prime causes of a bad hangover is dehydration. The more water you consume before and while having alcohol the lesser will be the hangover symptoms. Even during a hangover remember to drink plenty of water.
It is also a good idea to drink plenty of water even after you have finished having drinks. This will help the body to retain more water which makes processing the alcohol easier.
Drinking alcohol is also one of the key reasons for getting a cotton mouth feel in your mouth which is also due to dehydration. Drinking more water helps get rid of the cotton mouth sensation as well.
Drink sports drinks
Drinking isotonic sports drinks is also a good option along with water. These drinks help replenish fluids in your body. They also help in easing the symptoms of an upset stomach.
Vitamin C plays an important role in replenishing the fluids of your body. Having drinks rich in Vitamin C helps reduce the hangover symptoms and instead provides energy to the body. This energy is helpful in processing the alcohol consumed.
Avoid caffeinated drinks
Consuming strong Coffee, Tea, etc. the day after you have had alcoholic drinks is a bad idea. Since these tend to dehydrate your body even further. Plus will irritate an already upset stomach a little more.
3. Things To Eat That Combat The Effect Of Alcohol
Eggs are one of the important products that can help you feel back to normal. Eggs are rich in amino acids known as Cysteine. These amino acids tend to absorb the toxins that enter your body due to alcohol. This can remarkably reduce the symptoms of a hangover. The only factor to bear in mind is that the eggs must be cooked.
Having a few egg whites in next morning will do wonders to your hangover.
Crackers or Toast
Even if you feel like going for a heavy meal after drinks, you must avoid it at all times. Opting for foods like light crackers or toasts will help the stomach deal with the alcoholic toxins. Also crackers and toasts contain sodium which tends to get depleted after consuming alcoholic drinks.
Have potassium rich foods
When you drink more, you tend to urinate more which results in loss of potassium. This, in turn, causes the body to feel lethargic and nauseous. Having a potassium rich food like a banana will help replenish the lost potassium and make the body feel revitalized and reduce the effects of a hangover.
Have a nutrient rich soup
To reduce the effects of alcohol nutrients like sodium, cysteine comes handy. This along with the rehydrating effect of water can all be found in nutrient-rich soups. You can opt for soups like the Bouillon chicken noodle soup, and miso soup which is perfect for reducing the effects of alcohol.
4. Get The Required Rest
Drinking an evening heavily before a working is an appalling choice. As it leaves very less time for the body to completely recover from the effects of alcohol. In such times opting for a caffeinated drink to combat the lethargy is yet another wrong decision, as it will dehydrate your body more and heighten the hangover symptoms.
A hangover will reduce naturally with time. If you give your body adequate rest, the effects of alcohol will reduce on its own. It is also the best way to deal with a throbbing headache that comes along.
If you want to prepare for a long restful night’s sleep after drinking alcohol, you must have a nice warm shower. This will help raise your body temperature and prepare you to sleep.
But if you have to stay awake for any reason, then a cold shower might come handy. It will freshen you up and help you stay alert.
Go for a stroll
Walking tends to improve your metabolism. So going for a short walk will help process the alcohol in your stomach faster and reduce the effects of alcohol. Having said that, we all know that drinking alcohol will impair your ability to walk properly and so you must avoid walking near the roads where cars drive past at high speed. Walking near any stairway is also a risky option as climbing and down stairs with impaired judgment can be potentially dangerous.
You can find a safe sidewalk and walk up and down the street, steering too far away from your location might also end up badly.
5. Take Medication If Symptoms Persist
If that headache is pounding so bad that you cannot go on with your daily activities you might consider opting for the right medication. You can try anti-inflammatory tablets that will help deal with your headache in no time.
If acidity is becoming a big problem and no amount of home remedies are helping, you might consider having an Antacid.
If you are feeling nauseous and lethargic, you can consume a health supplement that contains Vitamin B6. This will help revitalize your body and reduce symptoms of nausea and vomiting as well.
However, it is best to take the opinion of a medical professional before you try to medicate yourself. A there are plenty of medications which are contraindicated with alcohol. You must also bear in mind your medical history, in case any medication does not suit you or causes an allergic reaction.
Alcoholic drinks if consumed must always be had under caution. Other than the immediate of a hangover, there are also many serious long term effects which are potentially dangerous. If you must drink alcohol, always keep it as an occasional affair, and never get addicted to it.
When speaking of immediate effects, one of the primary causes is dehydration which also gives rise to a cotton mouth sensation.
Let us now get to know more about what is a cotton mouth sensation.
What Is A Cotton Mouth?
A cotton mouth does not mean that there is literally any cotton in your mouth. It is a condition which is also known as xerostomia. It is when the mouth cavity feels completely dry as if there is cotton in the mouth. At some point or other, we all would have experienced this sensation.
It is a primary indicator of thirst. However for some people, having cotton mouth sensation is a part of their everyday life.
What Does A Cotton Mouth Typically Do?
Simply put, a cotton mouth sensation occurs when the mouth becomes dry. It could be because of thirst. Saliva is the element that keeps our mouth continuously moist. Saliva is produced by glands known as salivary glands which are situated at the mouth. If the production of saliva slows down for any reason, it makes the mouth dry.
This, in turn, leads to developing health issues as everyday tasks become difficult with a dry mouth. Like doing simple tasks like chewing food, swallowing it becomes difficult. It might even lead to a sensation of pain.
Though not so severe, a cotton mouth sensation could impair your sensation of taste and make you feel constantly thirsty. Wearing dentures with a dry mouth could also become extremely difficult.
We may not realize but Saliva plays an important role in keeping our mouth healthy. It also helps to keep the bacterial and fungal growth in the mouth under control. So if there is lack of saliva in your mouth, it also becomes vulnerable to oral diseases, tooth decay, gingivitis and oral thrush as well.
What Are the Symptoms Of Cotton Mouth?
The primary issue is always a constant dry sensation in the mouth and obviously a sensation as if there is cotton wool in the mouth.
Other than that, there may be other symptoms which include:
- Constant thirst
- Dryness in the throat
- Sores in the mouth, especially where the teeth are a little sharp.
- A sticky sensation in the mouth
- Bad odor from the mouth
- Redness or raw sensation on the tongue
- Difficulty in tasting, chewing and swallowing food.
What Are The Causes Of A Dry Mouth?
A first and foremost cause of a dry mouth could be dehydration. But there could be other factors as well like:
- A dry mouth is a common side effect of many prescription medicines.
- Any untreated underlying condition of the mouth
- Any blockage in the salivary glands etc.
If you are experiencing a dry mouth despite ensuring you are not dehydrated, then you must consider visiting a doctor to check the causative factor. They could help figure out the exact reason of a dry mouth.
In case if there is no obvious reason for a dry mouth, you need not fret. There may be many daily habits which may be causing a dryness and cotton mouth sensation.
Let us consider a few of them
- Not drinking enough water: This could be one of the most basic problems. Even if you may not be literally dehydrated but are consuming lesser water than what is required, it could lead to a dry mouth sensation. One must ensure they drink minimum 1-2 liters of water in a day.
- Alcohol consumption: As mentioned earlier, consumption of alcohol tends to dehydrate your body. In turn, a dehydrated body gives rise to dryness in the mouth and a cotton mouth sensation. To combat this, one must essentially limit alcohol intake. And even if they do, one must ensure they drink enough water before, during and after the consumption of alcohol. This not only helps to keep a person hydrated but also helps flush out toxins left behind by the alcohol.
- Caffeine intake: Yet another product that tends to dehydrate is caffeine intake. Caffeine is a diuretic and causes increased urination. This, in turn, causes loss of fluids from the body causing dehydration which in turn causes a dry mouth and cotton mouth sensation. Often people are habituated to high caffeine consumption which is difficult to curb completely. But one must at least try and limit the intake which could also be helpful.
- Changing mouthwash: This is a simple factor that we all tend to forget. Changing your brand of mouthwash could help you deal with a dry mouth. As, many types of mouthwash are often alcohol based, and as discussed earlier, alcohol tends to give you a dry sensation in the mouth.
- Stop smoking cannabis: Smoking marijuana could cause a severe dryness in the mouth. Often people complain of dryness in mouth and thirst that cannot be quenched. It is most commonly seen in the case of cannabis smokers. If you smoke marijuana and also complain about a dry mouth, you know the causative factor, and you know you have to stop it.
- Smoking: Not just smoking but consumption of tobacco whether chewing or smoking causes dryness in the mouth. This has been proven by studies which show that smoking affects the salivary glands which cause them to slower the flow of saliva in the mouth. This, in turn, causes dryness in the mouth. Smoking also causes many other severe health effects and must be stopped as soon as possible.
- Breathing through your mouth: While exercising or when suffering from a blocked nose, one usually breathes through the mouth. This is a simple explanation for a dry mouth and can be easily brought into control by breathing through your nose. You must find relief from a blocked nose and make breathing from your nose a habit.
- Add moisture in the air: Sometimes when the air is too dry, it could also give rise to dryness, not just the mouth but also in eyes, nose, etc. Altering the air you live in could help significantly. You could only use a humidifier which will add moisture to the air and help deal with the dryness.
- Stimulate the salivary glands: In case the salivary glands are slow in producing saliva for whatever reasons, you can do your bit to stimulate the salivary glands. You can try eating hard candies, chew sugar-free gums or have a sour patch which would stimulate your salivary glands to produce more saliva and moisturize your dry mouth.
A dry mouth or cotton mouth can be dealt with fairly quickly when there is no other underlying condition. Visit your doctor if symptoms persist to rule out any other possibility.