Science-Backed Reasons Why You Get Hangover Anxiety After a Night Out
June 28, 2022
If you experience those spiraling, repetitive thoughts after a night of drinking, aka “hangxiety,” you are not alone in wondering what causes hangover anxiety. According to a 2017 study, 22.7% of participants reported anxiety as one of their hangover symptoms. So, what’s happening in the brain and body during a hangover to cause this distress? Are there any hangover anxiety remedies? Read on below to learn more.
Anxious After Hangover? Here’s Why.
Some people seem to shrug off an overindulgent night out with a good laugh and go on with their day. But for some, anxious hangover symptoms or even depressive feelings can linger on and prove difficult to bounce back from.
While the first drink or two of the night may have made you feel less anxious (hence alcohol’s “social lubricant” nickname), after those drinks, the brain begins to overcompensate for relaxation. As you sip those first two drinks, the alcohol stimulates GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) production, a neurotransmitter that inhibits nerve transmission and thus reduces excitability: less thoughts, more chilled-out feelings. As you sip the third and fourth drinks, now the brain also blocks glutamate, another excitatory neurotransmitter, meaning anxiety continues to go way down. While you may feel “good,” the brain senses this drastic change and overcompensates.
When you stop drinking and wake up with your hangover, you’re left with a GABA rebound. Your brain was bathing in chilled-out bliss, but now it’s drained of it and left with an influx of brain activity that sought to compensate for the overly-relaxing effect of the alcohol. This next-day brain chemical aftermath is what makes the hangover anxiety particularly intense.
Are Some People More Prone to Hangxiety?
It has been discovered that introverts seem to experience more severe hangxiety. If you consider yourself to be quite shy, you may have an already lower baseline level of GABA, so you might feel this next-day neurological rollercoaster more acutely as the brain attempts to return to its normal levels. To understand your own brain and body’s limits is key—try not to put it through the stress of hangover anxiety if this sounds like you. Perhaps keeping yourself within that one to two drink threshold will help you avoid the GABA spike while also getting to enjoy a little buzz.
Are There Hangover Anxiety Remedies?
Biologically and neurologically, your brain simply needs time to return to baseline. Drink plenty of water, get rest, have a good meal; but patience is what it's going to take if you're currently sitting with hangxiety. Hang in there—your hangover will not last forever.
There are online forums like this one for those with hangover anxiety looking for a space to vent. Sometimes, it seems to express the social anxieties of “what did I do last night?” or “how could I get so carried away?” can help to relieve repetitive thoughts. Calling a friend or spending the morning with your friends may also alleviate the distress.
The best plan is to get out ahead of hangover anxiety. If you notice you are particularly anxious before heading out for some drinking, it may be a good night for mocktails! Setting yourself up for a better morning starts the night before. If you do decide to drink, our Flyby Recovery Capsules contain a blend of natural ingredients that can help replenish essential vitamins and minerals. Our Recovery Capsules have an effective amount of DHM (dihydromyricetin), a flavonoid that can help keep GABA levels from going crazy.
Try Flyby Recovery Capsules To Help Mitigate Hangxiety
If you’re someone who experiences hangover anxiety, our Flyby Recovery Capsules may help you to awaken with a more clear mind and less racing thoughts. Just three pills before you go out drinking, and another three before you head to bed could be the difference in your morning hangxiety. As always, drink responsibly, stay in tune with your body, and enjoy!
Sign up for our newsletter
- Choosing a selection results in a full page refresh.
- Press the space key then arrow keys to make a selection.