Hangover - Symptom, Treatment And Causes
What is Hangover?
Hangover is the experience of several unpleasant psychological and physiological effects, which happens after consumption of ethanol, as found in beer, wine and distilled spirits. The malady can last for many hours or even beyond a day.
While the causes of this sickness are still poorly understood by the doctors, many factors have been held responsible for this malady. These are changes in the immune system, acetaldehyde accumulation and changes in glucose metabolism factors in the body. Also disturbed prostaglandin synthesis, dehydration, increased cardiac output, metabolic acidosis, vasodilation, and malnutrition along with sleep deprivation brings about this sickness.By-products such as congeners in alcoholic beverages or beverage-specific effects of additives also play an important role in creating hangover. The symptoms of this illness occur mostly after the effects of the alcohol begins to wane off. So hangover typically happen in the morning following a night of heavy alcohol consumption.
Hangover symptoms typically begin when your blood alcohol content drops significantly and is at or near zero. They're usually in full effect the morning after a night of heavy drinking. Depending on what and how much you drank, you may notice:
- Fatigue and weakness
- Excessive thirst and dry mouth
- Headaches and muscle aches
- Nausea, vomiting or stomach pain
- Poor or decreased sleep
- Increased sensitivity to light and sound
- Dizziness or a sense of the room spinning
- Decreased ability to concentrate
- Mood disturbances, such as depression, anxiety and irritability
- Rapid heartbeat
The individualized person related factors that effects hangover are:
- Genetics: Flushing phenotypes (alcohol flush reaction) and aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) in the Asian people are some of the genetic factors that influence alcohol tolerance. Data on hangover patients show that people who have increased acetaldehyde accumulation are more susceptible to this sickness. The fact that less than 25% of drinkers who claim that they had never had hangover, justifies the claims that genetic variation plays a major role in different individuals of severity of the hangover.
- Age: There are many examples that people tend to experience more bought of hangover and this sickness gets worse as one ages. This may happen owing to declining supply of the enzyme involved in metabolizing alcohol (alcohol dehydrogenase).
- Sex: Experts say, that at the same number of alcohol, women tend to be more prone to hangover than men. It may be explained by sex differences affects in the pharmacokinetics of the alcoholic drinks. It has been observed that women attain higher BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration) than men after both of them have consumed the same number of drinks.
Usually self diagnosable
Dry mouth and dizziness
Fatigue along with gastrointestinal complains.
Sweating along with nausea and hyper-excitability.
General discomfort that can last more than 24 hours.