Almost everyone who drinks from time to time has been there: after a night out, you wake up with those telltale signs of a little too much fun. Your tongue is heavy, your head is spinning and in pain and a rush of nausea that threatens to send you to the bathroom on a moment’s notice. In short — all of the symptoms of a nasty hangover.
For most drinkers, both heavy and social alike, a hangover is an unfortunate consequence of imbibing a little too much. Some hangovers are mild and wear off in a few hours, but others are virtually incapacitating, leaving victims curled up in bed for the better part of a day. Traditionally, the only cure is lots of water, ibuprofen or other over-the-counter painkillers, and possibly saltines and ginger ale to curb nausea.
IV therapy, however, may be the secret cure to a hangover, providing instant hydration and access to vitamins that can replenish, revitalize and restore the body, wiping away — or, at a minimum, ameliorating — the side effects that accompany too many drinks.
What Is a Hangover?
Unfortunately, these questions aren’t exactly easy to answer, which is partially responsible for the difficulty even highly experienced physicians experience in pinpointing a universal cure. Research indicates that hangovers are derived from numerous biological functions combining to create a negative feeling in response to substantial alcohol. Dehydration plays a role in the headache often experienced after drinking; as the body attempts to replenish fluids, blood vessels narrow, restricting the flow of both oxygen and blood to the brain. In response, the brain dilates its own blood vessels, leading to swelling that can trigger pain receptors surrounding the brain.
In addition to causing side effects in the brain, alcohol also irritates the lining of the intestines and the stomach, leading to inflammation and, potentially, vomiting. This can also cause an increase in secretions from the pancreas and intestines as well as higher levels of gastric acid.
Acetaldehyde is another potential culprit of hangovers. Produced by the partial oxidation of ethanol caused by alcohol dehydrogenase, a liver enzyme, acetaldehyde breaks down naturally in the body but can be highly irritating in the process.
Hangovers can be variable from one person to another and from one beverage of choice to another. Some people get them – approximately 77 percent of drinkers, as studies indicate – and some people don’t. As such, finding a treatment that works for everyone isn’t quite as clear-cut as it sounds.
The Benefits of IVs
An IV, or intravenous treatment, is a medical technique that involves delivering fluids into the body via the veins. IVs are considered among the fastest and most efficient ways to introduce medications and fluid replacement into the body as the influence of circulation ensures prompt distribution. IVs are most commonly used in the peripheral veins, like in the hands and feet, or as a central line, which features a catheter inserted into a smaller vein that empties into a large central vein within the torso. IVs are also available in several different forms, like continuous IVs, secondary IVs or push IVs.
When an IV is in use, there is no ambiguity or delay in treatment; medications or solutions can be given quickly and effectively with near-immediate results. In the case of IV therapy, it’s possible to deliver curative solutions for the benefit of health in a way that targets symptoms at the source.
As well as patients in need of treatment in hospitals or other medical centers, outpatient IV clinics are now working to address numerous forms of physical illness, including Lyme disease, migraines, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. They are also popular among athletes, like marathon runners, who are seeking additional outlets to ensure proper hydration and nutrition.
Curing a Hangover With IV Fluids
While chugging water and pounding ibuprofen has long been a go-to for many hangover sufferers, IV therapy offers compelling new avenues that can remedy symptoms and alleviate pains in a matter of minutes, not hours.
Hospitals have traditionally used IV therapy to treat those with dehydration, vitamin deficiencies and countless other conditions, but independent clinics are now leaning into this trend. Instead of going to the ER with a headache and a stomach in torment, it’s now possible for the hangover-afflicted to receive outpatient treatment featuring vitamins, minerals and superior hydration for 45 minutes to an hour.
IV infusions for hangovers can vary from one destination to another but often feature a saline drip infused with electrolytes, B-12 and B-complex vitamins in addition to anti-nausea or painkiller medications. Some may also include additional supplements like calcium, magnesium, vitamin C and glutathione. Some of these services take place in a clinical setting while others, particularly in high-income areas like NYC, may offer in-home service to those truly feeling too hungover to leave the house.
IV drip treatments claim to offer big benefits to those who choose to address hangovers via a saline bag, including:
- A boost to the immune system
- Increased energy
- Improved cognitive function and mental clarity
- Accelerated healing
- Minimization of discomfort or displeasure
However, many medical professionals, even those who work at IV services, caution patients that stepping up partying simply because a carefully curated saline drip can alleviate symptoms isn’t a wise choice. While IV therapy does have the ability to ensure enhanced access to beneficial vitamins and nutrients, wellness is comprehensive, and there’s no miracle cure for good health.
IV Treatments at FHE
For those seeking a way to revitalize the body and the mind, whether after a long night or simply as an added measure in pursuit of physical well-being, IV vitamin therapy has compelling potential. At FHE, we believe in the power of what targeted treatments can offer, utilizing our unique IV therapy to help patients overcome far more than a simple hangover.
As the body is comprised of 70 percent water, dehydration can have devastating effects on numerous aspects of wellness, including a depressed metabolism and a compromised vascular system. At FHE Health, our vitamin IV infusions are designed to replenish vitamin, mineral and electrolyte levels while encouraging hydration and a whole-body approach to health. Brain and metabolic functions are immediately restored, helping patients feel their best as soon as treatment concludes. These treatments are designed to work in conjunction with our addiction medicine services as well, providing holistic alternatives to supplement the results experienced in detox and beyond.
If you are looking for a way to improve health and feel your best, vitamin IV treatments from FHE Health may offer benefits to your overall wellness. Please contact us today to learn more about our infusions or to speak with a member of our intake team.