Science has finally proven what we've all known to be true through our own anecdotal evidence: smoking cigarettes during a night of drinking will take your hangover from "my head hurts" to "somebody kill me." Researchers at Brown University have found "at the same number of drinks, people who smoke more likely to have a hangover and have more intense hangovers."
The study, which was published in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, involved monitoring the drinking and smoking habits and hangover symptoms of 113 college students every day for eight weeks. When the students drank heavily (five to six units of alcohol in an hour), those who smoked were suffered worse hangovers than those who didn't, with increased headaches, nausea, fatigue, and lack of concentration.
The author of the study, Dr. Damaris Rohsenow, said the findings suggest a direct effect of smoking cigarettes on hangovers, but that "the exact mechanisms are unclear." But tobacco smoke, like alcohol, contains the chemical acetaldehyde, which is what contributes to the nausea and headaches of hangovers. Additionally, Dr. Rohsenow points out that nicotine receptors in the brain are also connected with our response to alcohol, which could explain why smoking is tied to hangovers.
So you might not be able to avoid a hangover after a night of tying one on, but social smokers could lessen the damage by not bumming cigarettes from friends. And don't do that anyway, because it's annoying.
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