A lot follows a night of drinking. In most cases, you will wake up with a headache, nausea, stomach upset, and dizziness, among other hangover symptoms. It is also not uncommon to visit the bathroom more times than usual to either pee or because of diarrhea. The latter, if left untreated, can cause further dehydration and worsen your symptoms.
This article investigates one of the least talked about hangover symptoms, diarrhea after drinking. What causes it? Can you treat it? How?
Alcohol and Diarrhea
Alcohol first travels to your stomach after ingestion. If there is food present in your stomach, it is absorbed alongside the alcohol into the bloodstream, slowing its digestion.
If your stomach is empty, the alcohol moves on to your small intestine, where it is absorbed at a faster rate. This is why it is advisable to eat something before drinking.
Once most of the alcohol is absorbed into your bloodstream, what remains is excreted through urine and stool. This partly explains why you urinate a lot while drinking. The stool, on the other hand, is pushed out of the colon through coordinated muscle contractions. It comes out as diarrhea because, one, alcohol increases the rate of these contractions.
When muscle contractions in the colon are hurried, water is not absorbed from your stool. This means the stool will come out very quickly and containing a lot of extra water. In other words, it will come out as diarrhea.
Diarrhea vs. Constipation
Scientific studies show that drinking small alcohol amounts acts to speed up your rate of digestion. The result is often diarrhea. Larger amounts, on the other hand, tend to delay digestion and cause constipation.
Treating Alcohol-Related Diarrhea
It is important to know that taking more alcohol will further aggravate your stomach and likely worsen your diarrhea. As such, the first thing you should do is avoid drinking until your digestion normalizes. Additionally, you can turn to the following remedies:
Foods to Eat
When your stomach is irritated, it is advisable to stick to easily digestible foods. A heavy or greasy meal can promote indigestion, worsening your digestion problems.
Instead, you should limit your food and drink intake to:
- Simple carbs, like crackers and toast
- Fruits, such as bananas
- Fruit juice
- Electrolyte drinks
- Coconut water for liquids
Foods to Avoid
As mentioned, you should steer clear of greasy foods. You should also avoid high-fiber foods, dairy products, and highly spiced foods. Coffee, as well as other caffeine beverages, can also worsen diarrhea.
If your symptoms don’t improve after eating, you can turn to over-the-counter medicines. Common options include antidiarrheal medications such as Pepto-Bismol and Imodium.
Get Hangover Relief in Key West
When discussing hangover symptoms, you will hear about headaches, dizziness, nausea, and dry mouth. Very rarely will you hear mention of diarrhea after drinking?
However, understanding this symptom can better help you protect yourself from untimely bathroom visits the next morning.
If last night’s celebrations have left you with a contemptible hangover, the Hangover Hospital in Key West is here for you. We offer a 45-minute IV hangover remedy that will have you up and running in no time. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.