You jolt awake. Disconnected scenes of a great night out with friends, and agreeing to another double whiskey-soda, flash between your pounding temples. You squint at the cruel, mocking sun through slitted, sand-filled eyes, attempting to unstick your tongue from the roof of your mouth with sips of Gatorade.
This may be Hangover of the Year. And you have stuff you're supposed to do today, even though it's Sunday.
You're old enough to know better. But soul-crushing hangovers can happen to anyone. When hair of the dog isn't an option, here's how to recoup, go forth, and seize what's left of the day.
Alcohol, as you know, is a cruel mistress when it comes to shut-eye: It makes you sleepy, then it robs you of the deep, REM sleep that actually leaves you waking up refreshed. If at all possible, hit the sheets for a few more hours once you've sobered up.
Water, Gatorade, or Coconut Water
Newsflash: alcohol makes you pee. A lot. All those bathroom trips a) dehydrate you and b) flush your body's natural reserves of glucose, salt, potassium, and vitamins B and C down the toilet. Restore balance to the force by slowly sipping sports drinks or bouillon.
Eggs contain large amounts of cysteine, which breaks down hangover-causing acetaldehyde in the liver; delicious, carb-y toast helps you to feel less trembly and more like a person. Don't overdo it on the grease, though. Contrary to college wisdom, an oily, fatty hangover brunch only further irritates your stomach and will, as if on cue, make you want to barf in a few hours.
As mentioned, you've just peed out your body's natural reserves of potassium. Happily, bananas, loaded with potassium and electrolytes, will heal you up. If you can't handle the mushiness of a banana, how about a kiwi? They do basically the same thing.
Nurses have been in on this secret for decades. Since a hangover is 80% dehydration, a saline drip helps you bounce back by replacing those fluids in a hurry. A number of businesses, including Hangover Heaven and The Hangover Club have realized the moneymaking potential in servicing hurtin' units: give the professionals a call if you're that desperate.
Oh, if only there were some safe, natural way to combat hangover pain, nausea and anxiety? Happily, many people find that a few hits off the vape or a joint gives them the will to eat again, get off the couch, and feel a little happier. And since taking Tylenol to cope with your self-inflicted headache can cause liver damage, an herbal cigarette might be your best bet.
Unfortunately, the only surefire way to cure a hangover is to ride it out.
Or try another piece of advice that's also 100% effective: stop drinking so damned much.