Binge Drinking – the next day impact of heavy alcohol drinking
Next month marks the annual ‘Go Sober For October’ campaign where thousands of people quit alcohol for the entire month to raise money for MacMillan cancer support (an awesome charity by the way).
And let’s be honest, it really should be relatively straight forward to not need alcohol for a few weeks shouldn’t it? Whether you are taking part in ‘Go Sober For October’ or have just made the decision to cut down your alcohol consumption, you are likely to benefit from sleeping better, feeling more energised and just feeling healthier (as well as saving a fortune that you would have spent on booze). And there’s the added benefit of no hangovers (along with those hangover promises you make to yourself about how you’ll never drink excessively again….).
Some recent research has looked at the impact on the next day effects of heavy drinking and how it impacts on your thoughts and performance.
Binge Drinking – The Next Day Impact
I often work with people who struggle to control their binge drinking or who habitually drink too much. It may be one or two bottles of wine a night, or that struggle to leave a bottle unfinished. It may be that they can’t have alcohol in the house without finding themselves reaching for it and drinking the lot. And for others it may have become part of the end of day ‘wind-down’ ritual or the weekends have become the time to binge drink.
In all these cases and more, someone comes to me for help because they are struggling to control their drinking behaviours. And hypnotherapy is a very effective way of taking back control over your drinking.
Whilst probably all of us are familiar with the dreaded hangover the day after heavy alcohol consumption, now researchers have evaluated the impact of a heavy binge drinking session on our thinking and performance the next day.
In their review, they defined a ‘hangover’ as ‘mental and physical symptoms, experienced the day after a single episode of heavy drinking, starting when blood alcohol concentration approaches zero.’ They reviewed the existing literature to evaluate the effect of heavy alcohol consumption on cognition.
They found that if you are hungover after heavy drinking, it impacts on your memory, your attention and your psychomotor skills. As they conclude,
“These findings suggest that specific cognitive functions may be impaired the morning following a night of heavy alcohol consumptions, with implications for everyday task performance (e.g. driving).”
That is, even after the alcohol has left your bloodstream, the day after an evening of heavy drinking you may struggle with poorer concentration and focus, decreased memory and reduced reaction times. Which could well be a big deal if you are driving and may impact on many other aspects such as your workplace performance.
And all this without even mentioning the impact on your health from excessive drinking.
Whilst in my younger days (how old does that make me sound!), I went through your typical going out and drinking phase, these days I barely drink any alcohol. It just doesn’t seem worth the consequences on sleep, energy and my health. Let alone the likely impact the next day on time lost to feeling rough and the detrimental impact (as shown in this review) on focus and concentration levels.
And if you are likewise fed up of the impact of excessive alcohol drinking on your life, or are frustrated by your inability to control your binge drinking, then this evidence may well add to the increasing stockpile of reasons to do something about it. Whether you start with ‘go Sober for October’ or you make the decision to just do it, it can only have positive impacts on your thinking, performance and health (along with your ability to drive safety).
To your success,
Hypnotherapy in Ely & Newmarket
Looking to take back control over your excessive drinking or binge drinking? Book your free initial consultation and let’s have a chat about how we can work together to make that a reality: Appointments
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And there are many powerful hypnosis downloads available to help you here: Hypnosis Downloads
Reference: Gunn, C., Mackus, M., Griffin, C., Munafò, M. R., and Adams, S. (2018) A systematic review of the next‐day effects of heavy alcohol consumption on cognitive performance. Addiction, https://doi.org/10.1111/add.14404.