Vomiting is one of the ways your body gets rid of toxins.
It can feel unpleasant and inconvenient, but it’s a helpful, protective response.
If you drink too much alcohol too fast, your body will vomit to avoid severe damage. Alcohol overdose or alcohol poisoning – too much alcohol in your bloodstream – is potentially life-threatening, so if you’ve consumed too much, vomiting is often a better option than letting more alcohol be digested.
Getting Through The Nausea Safely
Instead of trying to fight the urge to vomit, it’s usually better to let it happen. You’ll feel better once you’ve rid your system of the alcohol.
But there are a few things you can do to make the experience a little safer and less uncomfortable:
- Rehydrate with water. Vomiting can dehydrate you, so it’s essential to replenish your fluids to stay safe. Wait a few minutes after throwing up, then slowly sip some water.
- Don’t drink more alcohol. “The hair of the dog” is not a helpful or healthful solution. It will only delay the inevitable and make you feel worse in the long run.
- Avoid acidic foods and drinks. Eat bland foods like toast, crackers, or rice if you feel nauseous after drinking. Although some people believe that greasy and fatty foods make for good hangover cures, they’ll likely irritate your stomach and make your nausea worse.
- Avoid acetaminophen and ibuprofen. These medications can damage your liver or cause stomach bleeds when combined with alcohol.
- Get some rest. When your body is dealing with alcohol toxicity, it’s best to give it a break. Get as much sleep as you can to help your system recover.
If you experience continuous vomiting for more than 24 hours, see blood in your vomit, or have trouble breathing, get professional medical treatment right away.
Preventing Alcohol-Induced Vomiting
The most effective way to ensure you don’t conclude your night of drinking with an episode of vomiting is relatively simple and probably obvious: drink slower and drink less.
Spacing out your drinks over the course of a few hours will give your body more time to digest the alcohol and lessen the chances that your body (and mind) will get overwhelmed.
Drink more water before, between, and after your alcoholic drinks. This will help keep you hydrated and might also slow you down a bit.