As a physician and psychiatrist, alcohol is bad for you and can worsen your condition, but if you are going to drink I’d like to share these tips on alcohol this NYE to lessen any negative side effects.
Indeed, alcohol is a depressant and often results in poorer sleep quality and reactive anxiety when alcohol is coming out of your system. However, many patients drink and don’t have a pathological issue with it. In this case, if you are not in recovery or suffering from alcohol dependence, there are some ways to be safer about alcohol use and avoiding becoming overly intoxicated.
Tips On Alcohol This NYE
1. Drink more water: Alcohol can cause significant dehydration, resulting in you not only having a hangover but also being less able to process alcohol. Not taking time to drink water can also result in you drinking more and faster than you had planned. Try starting at the party with a glass of water to ensure that you aren’t simply thirsty.
2. Eat: So many patients tell me that they got overly intoxicated after not having time to eat. Food helps to absorb alcohol and also fills your stomach so that you feel fuller and drink more slowly.
3. Check your medications: There are many medications, hundreds in fact, that you should just not combine with alcohol. This may be due to an actual interaction with alcohol (i.e. disulfiram) or a worsening of your tolerance of alcohol (common with psychiatric medications). If you are taking any medication that results in sedation, alcohol does not mix, because it too is sedating and this can put you in a bad position health-wise and from a personal safety perspective. Pain medications are a major culprit with alcohol as they are both sedating and you can take too much without realizing it. This is not an exhaustive list and you should openly discuss your plans with your physician so they can help guide you.
4. Get your own drinks: Letting your friends talk you into “one more shot” is not only not great for your health, but might not be what you’d like to do. Obtaining your own drink also helps protect you from any other substances being put into your drink. Tell your friends that you’ll get your own drinks, and keep track of how much you’ve had.
5. Have a buddy: Having someone else help you keep track of any habit can be a useful intervention. If you’re at a gathering with a trusted friend or partner, discuss your goals with them and enlist their help.
6. Make your goals: Plan goals you’d like for yourself before you head out for the night. Consciously deciding how you’d like to act that night and the following day can have major positive impacts on your behavior.
Beyond these tips for alcohol this NYE, alcohol should be treated with caution. Keep yourself safe this NYE and start the new year on a healthy foot forwards.
**This blog is not to be treated as medical advice, please discuss with your physician if you have any concerns.**