Hangover is a medical condition in which one experiences various unpleasant psychological effects. It occurs due to the consumption of alcohol, such as wine, beer, and distilled spirits. Hangovers can last for several hours or over a day (24 hours) depending upon various factors. It is a very commonly used word, especially among youngsters.
Hangover is not an unknown concept now. Every person who consumes alcohol more than that his body can sustain has a hangover the next day. But hangover must not be taken casually. It causes problems in healthy body systems making the body behave abnormally. Therefore, it is always recommended not to get into hangover frequently.
Hangover must be cured as soon as possible; else it may lead to severe problems. Using essential oils for bringing down hangover is the best way to get rid of it. Essential oils are naturally prepared and thus are safe for use.
Causes of Hangover:
There is no information about the exact cause of a hangover. Research is still going on for finding what exactly causes hangover. Nevertheless, beverage-specific additives or by-products such as congeners in alcoholic beverages is known to play an essential role in causing a hangover. Besides, there are also other causes responsible for hangover(1). They are:
- Acetaldehyde accumulation
- Changes in the immune system and glucose metabolism
- Metabolic acidosis
- Disturbed prostaglandin synthesis
- Increased cardiac output
- Sleep deprivation
Symptoms of hangover
Hangover comes with some typical symptoms. These symptoms generally occur after the intoxicating effect of alcohol begins to wear off. One of the most common time of appearance of symptoms is the next morning after a night of heavy drinking. Some of the symptoms are:
- Concentration problems
- Dry mouth
- Gastrointestinal distress
- Absence of hunger
Essential oils for hangover
Hangovers are an unpleasant consequence of excessive alcohol intake. Every person experiencing a hangover hopes that he gets rid of it as quickly as possible. While there is no quick cure for a hangover, there are a few essential oil cures that can bring down the symptoms.
The naturally prepared harmless essential oils are the best solution for hangovers. Some of the essential oils which can expertly help you get rid of hangover are as follows:
1. Fennel oil:
It is obtained by crushing the fennel seeds and is widely used to energise the body and lift ones mood. It possesses antiseptic, expectorant, stomachic and tonic properties which help in curing hangovers. Besides, it has many other health benefits like relieving spasms, healing wounds, purifying blood and a lot more.
2. Lavender oil:
Also known as light essential oil, the lavender oil helps you get rid of hangover by relaxing your anxiety and calming your thoughts. It has anti-nausea and anti-depressant properties which ease the body. It improves brain function, relieves pain and improves mood thus making it apt for the treatment of hangover. Moreover, it is an all-purpose oil used for bathing, cooking and purifying the air. Its aroma is known to reduce a headache.
3. Ginger oil:
This oil is an all-around remedy for several ailments. It possesses excellent analgesic, anti-nausea, energizing and liver protecting properties that not only cure a hangover but also restores the body systems. It helps combat fatigue and makes the body alert. Its primary function is supporting liver health. Besides, it promotes digestion and warms the body. In short, it supports overall digestive health.
4. Peppermint oil:
Peppermint has a minty aroma which instantly reduces nausea and increases focus. The peppermint oil is the most sought-after essential oil for a hangover relief. This oil gives a cooling effect that calms down the mind and the throbbing headache. It possesses excellent pain relieving, anti-nausea and stimulating properties that has been proved to reduce fatigues in just 11 minutes of inhalation. It helps clear the heavy head feeling, enable clarity of thoughts and rejuvenate the senses.
5. Black pepper oil:
It is derived from popular spice black pepper. It provides a wide variety of health benefits such as improving digestion, cleaning excretory system, reducing arthritis pain, detoxification and increases urination.
Why use essential oils as a natural hangover cure?
Weekends are meant for enjoying and partying. Sometimes, you end up partying harder and drinking enough for hangover to consume the next morning. When hangover has already weakened your mind and senses in the morning, repenting of indulging in little too much fun makes no sense. Think of curing it instead. Essential oils are here for your rescue.
Essential oils possess unbeatable rejuvenating properties that will not only relax your body but also energize you towards a long day ahead. It protects your liver and prevents it from damaging. Evidently, with all these unusual properties, it the best solution for the troublesome hangovers.
How to use essential oils for hangover?
1. Fennel oil:
Mix 2 drops of fennel oil with a suitable carrier oil. Mix properly and apply to skin. Gently massage the mixture to rejuvenate yourself. Some suitable carrier oils are rose, lavender, sandalwood and geranium oils.
2. Lavender oil:
Apply the oil directly to the skin and massage gently for relief. You can also use a diffuser to diffuse the oil into the air and let its aroma cure your hangover troubles.
3. Ginger oil:
Put 1 or 2 drops of ginger oil on your palm and inhale for relief. You can also gently massage a drop of ginger oil in the forehead and body for better effects. You can also use it with carrier oils for added benefits. Some carrier oils that blend well with ginger essential oil are citrus, rosemary and eucalyptus oils.
4. Peppermint oil:
You can either rub the peppermint oil on the temple or put few drops on your stomach to get rid of nausea. It can also be used by mixing with a carrier oil. Just add 2-3 drops of this essential oil with any suitable carrier oil like coconut oil. Rub this mixture gently for instant relief.
5. Black pepper oils:
the black pepper oil blends well with lavender, lime sandalwood, clove and ginger oils. Mix 2 or 3 drops of black pepper oil with three teaspoons of any of these suitable carrier oils. Put a few drops of this mix on your stomach and rub gently for stomach relief.
Dos and Don’ts
While essential oils are entirely natural, it is a general thought that it can be used without any prescription. But that is not true. A health care expert must be consulted before the essential oils for hangover can be used. Some people are allergic to the essential oils. Therefore, performing a patch test before using it in large amounts is hugely recommended. Make sure you choose the oil perfect for your sensitive skin. Many brands are selling essential oils, claiming them to be pure. So make sure you choose the oil which is truly pure. Do not use the oils in excess amounts as it can increase the trouble.
Even though essential oils are the natural ways to combat hangover, there are certain precautions which must be followed before using them. Some of the precautions are:
- Always dilute the essential oil before using them..
- Perform a patch test to make sure your skin is not allergic to the essential oil(2) for hangover.
- Apply the oil mixture gently and do not rub it harshly as it can irritate.
- Be careful when using tea tree oil around the sensitive regions like eyes, nose and ears.
- Exposure to external environment after immediate application can cause redness and irritation.
Besides the essential oils, there are also other home remedies which can help you get rid of hangover. Some of them are as follows:
Drinking lots of water will help you get rid of hangover. Drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of water per day. Drinking electrolyte-replenishing sports drinks also help.
Lemon can help get rid of the after-effects of excessive drinking like queasiness, dizziness, sensitivity to light and sound, and muscle pain. It helps in regaining balance in the body. It achieves that by controlling the blood sugar level and altering the pH level.
Honey is rich in potassium. With the rich potassium content, honey helps counteract the effects of drinking too much alcohol. Honey is also rich in fructose. Fructose is a type of sugar that helps metabolize the extra alcohol in the body, thus reducing hangover symptoms.
4. Tomato juice:
this vegetable juice contains fructose; a sugar metabolizes the alcohol quickly. It is rich in the vitamins, enzymes, and minerals that help overcome hangover.
With the fantastic properties of essential oil, you can quickly get over this situation and resume your regular work without any hassles. Then there are several other home remedies that you can avail to address this condition. There is no definite cure in medical science for hangover but now with essential oil, you can efficiently manage the symptoms of the condition. Just try and lead an active lifestyle and consume healthy food to increase the immunity levels of your body. Drink responsibly and under moderation.