It’s something we’ve all experienced. We get home from a night out that involved maybe one too many cocktails. Maybe we started the day early and gearing up to go out for the second round. The booze and food you’ve consumed is leaving you full and sick. It seems the only way you’ll feel better is to just yak it. Puke and rally to keep the party train goin, right? But can puking really help?
Although alcohol is fun, it is technically a toxin (I know I didn’t believe it either). Like all other toxins, when the body consumes too much, the natural reaction will be to remove it from the system. Naturally this may result in vomiting. If vomiting persists, then there’s a solid chance you have alcohol poisoning. At this point, you should probably call it quits for at least a bit.
If the body uses vomiting as a defense mechanism, then shouldn’t voluntarily puking have the same affects? If it makes you feel better, even for the short term, it must be good for you, right? Unfortunately, making yourself puke is not good for you and may have worse affects on the body.
If sobriety is what you’re looking for, then puking is not the strategy. Alcohol is absorbed fairly quickly by the body, so unless you throw up right after consuming that drink, puking will not get the alcohol out of your system or help you sober up. You’ve consumed the alcohol, now it’s time to enjoy the ride and wait it out.
Puking can help cure the nauseousness, but it could cause a lot of other side effects. When you make yourself vomit, you force stomach acid and any other food particles into your esophagus which could cause a lot of irritation. This irritation could ultimately lead to heartburn. Considering the rest of the symptoms you’ll experience during a hangover, why add one more?
Once in a while isn’t the end of the world, but if puking is part of your regular drinking routine, then you could inflicting serious harm on your body. Frequent vomiting could lead to chronic esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus) which increases your risk of developing esophageal cancer. Yeah that’s a little extreme and highly unlikely from puking a few times, but possible. However, what isn’t unrealistic is the development of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). This occurs when acid from the stomach leaks into the esophagus. As someone who has GERD, I can confirm that this is a nightmare and something you should avoid at all costs. The best way to explain GERD is to have heartburn every day, which no one wants. For the vein, consider the damage puking can do to your teeth. Stomach acid in the mouth can wear away the enamel leading to sensitive teeth, cavities, and gingivitis.
So, should you puke? If you can help it, don’t puke. It may give temporary relief but could cause harm in the long run. Especially if you’re puking every time you drink, but if this is happening then you need to reconsider your drinking habits.