Stomachache after drinking alcohol is a common symptom experienced after binging drinking. Alcoholic drinks affect the gastrointestinal tract first, before the rest of the body. Chronic intake of alcohol can alter the structure and function of the gastrointestinal tract, leading to abdominal discomfort, stomachaches, heartburn, and acid reflux.
Stomach pain may also be a sign of something more serious than just a discomfort due to alcohol drinking. It is therefore important to know what the possible causes of the stomach pain are, how to treat it, and ways to prevent it.
Alcohol is a chemical substance that is rapidly metabolized in the body, and is known to generate reactive oxygen species. As a pro-oxidant, it causes oxidative damage to the cells and tissues in the gastrointestinal tract.
The stomach and the intestines have a single layer of cells lining its inner side, which provides a protective barrier to substances that pass through the gastrointestinal tract. This inner lining is selectively permeable, and allows only important nutrients to be absorbed. When this barrier is disrupted, inflammation can occur, leading to stomach pain after drinking. The possible mechanisms which produce stomach pain include the following:
After a night of binge drinking, stomach pain and other hangover symptoms can be disturbing. Although these may sometimes resolve on their own, there are ways to reduce the pain and feel better. These include:
Stomach pain is usually the result of increased levels of stomach acid in your stomach. That is why eating something as dry as a toast may help soak up that acid. You can also enjoy salty crackers to get the same result. This will help relieve stomach pain and make the heartburn less severe.
A cup of yogurt is also good for your digestive system mainly because it is a good source of lactic acid bacteria. Combine yogurt with a toast to get better results. You may find it easier to deal with your stomach pain after drinking if you opt for some probiotic yogurt.
Mint tea is an old yet an effective way to treat your upset stomach. All you have to do is prepare a cup of warm mint tea and enjoy it slowly to treat your hangover stomachache. If you do not want to drink mint tea, simply chewing on fresh mint leaves may still help.
Just like mint tea, ginger tea can also help relieve the pain and discomfort you experience after drinking alcohol. If you are not feeling nauseous and can eat something in the morning, be sure to include some ginger to your food. If it seems difficult to eat anything, simply make yourself a cup of ginger tea and drink it slowly to relieve nausea and alleviate stomach pain. To make ginger tea, boil two cups of water and add 2 pieces of peeled and sliced ginger root to it. Let it simmer for 15 minutes over low heat. Finally, strain it and add some lemon and honey for taste. Drink it slowly!
Chicken soup will always work great to relieve stomach pain after drinking because it provides you with important nutrients and even helps reduce dehydration. It works by restoring the electrolyte balance in your body, which is the reason why you feel better soon after having a small bowl of chicken soup.
Alcohol is bad because it dehydrates your body and also lowers your levels of vitamins and minerals. This is the reason why it is important to drink water and eat something that would provide you with those essential vitamins and minerals. Bananas are great in this regard. A ripe banana provides you with a good dose of vitamin B, which helps relieve stomachache and nausea.
Many people go for pickles to help deal with a hangover, and it proves effective in most cases. Pickles are rich in many vitamins and minerals. For instance, you get iron, vitamin A, calcium, potassium, and manganese from pickles, all of which can help improve digestion and relieve stomach pain.
The best way to treat the stomach pain after alcohol drinking is to control the habit of drinking excessively. Although experts believe that drinking a glass of wine or a bottle of beer occasionally has certain health benefits, drinking to excess is not healthy, and is a sure way to damage one's body.
Avoid drinking alcohol, especially if it causes health problems like stomach pains. For most people, abstaining from this substance can prevent symptoms from recurring. However, in people who have a long history of alcohol drinking, damage to the gastrointestinal tract, including the liver, pancreas, and gallbladder, may be irreversible. Medical consultation is needed to treat the underlying condition causing the stomach pains and other related symptoms.