With everything we have going on (school work, student groups, internships, part-time job, the list goes on…), weekends can sometimes be as busy as Monday through Friday. But how can we Carpe Diem if we’re nursing a hangover or too sleepy to function? No one wants to lie in bed feeling miserable for hours on end, or neglect all that homework that still needs to get done.
If you binge drink* regularly on Friday and Saturday nights, it’s likely that you’re spending many of the morning and early afternoon hours nursing a hangover.
Assuming those 2 hangovers per week last about 6 hours, this would mean that…
- 48 hours (two full days) per month are spent hungover
- 360 hours (15 full days) of an academic year are spent hungover
And what about the sleep you’re losing?
When a person binge drinks, they aren’t able to get REM sleep – the sleep stage required to feel refreshed and well-rested. This can cause a person to feel irritable and sleepy throughout the next day. And if a person gets too much REM sleep (like they’re trying to play catch up from the night before) that also causes fatigue and grogginess the next day.
If you only get 3 hours of quality sleep after going out Friday and Saturday, you miss out on some serious snooze time:
- 12 hours of sleep per weekend
- 48 hours of sleep per month
- 432 hours of sleep per academic year (18 days of sleep)
So what can you do to prevent this?
- Plan ahead of time how much you’ll drink, and stick to your plan
- Pour standard drinks and keep track of how much you’re drinking
- Go slow – pace yourself over the course of the night
- Avoid drinking games and shots so you don’t over-drink
- Alternate alcoholic drinks with water
- Take a night off! Do an activity that doesn’t involve drinking.
* Definition of binge drinking: Consuming 4 or more drinks in 2 hours for women, 5 or more drinks in 2 hours for men.
SPREAD THE HEALTH: Hangovers and loss of sleep caused by binge drinking can reduce productivity and prevent you from Carpe Diem! To avoid this situation, plan ahead how much you’ll drink, keep track of your drinks, pace yourself, or take the night off from drinking.