Sorry to break this to you, but apparently you shouldn't take ibuprofen when you're hungover.

Ahh, hangovers.

The hell of your own making categorised by throbbing headaches, dehydration, queasiness, and the loud, loud world around you.

Your day with and without a hangover. Post continues after.

As much as we like to convince ourselves there truly is some magical hangover cure out there somewhere, time and time again, when we’re glued to the couch unable to move for an entire Sunday, we have to face the reality that there… isn’t.

But it turns out the route we so often take in a futile attempt to push a hangover away – paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin – could actually be doing more harm than good.

According to Healthline, taking ibuprofen with alcohol in your system can increase the risk of tearing your stomach lining, causing bleeding, irritation and in some cases, ulcers.

And if you take ibuprofen when drinking more than the recommended amount (about two to three drinks for women), the risk is only heightened.


A study conducted by Harvard Medical School also found that paracetamol and alcohol isn’t a good mix either. Paracetamol can lead to liver damage if taken at too-high a dosage, and heavy drinkers who take the drug on an empty stomach can overtax their livers.

The study did add that one night of binge drinking and a normal dose of paracetamol probably wouldn’t lead to liver problems, but with heavy drinkers, the risk is certainly there.


“The trouble starts when heavy drinkers take a lot of paracetamol over a period of time — several days, at least, and maybe longer. (In this context, heavy drinkers are defined as people who have three or more drinks a day.)

“A drinking habit and a poor diet often go hand in hand. Multiple high doses of paracetamol are more dangerous for drinkers partly because their glutathione levels tend to be low because they don’t eat well,” the study read.

And while in the past, a different study conducted Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia found that plain old aspirin and coffee are your best bets to rid yourself of a hangover, health experts advise that mixing alcohol and aspirin can increase your risk of stomach bleeding.

So what’s a hungover person to do when the world is too bright and the simplest of tasks seem impossible?

Our (certainly not medically proven) advice is lemonade icy poles, a greasy meal, and a Harry Potter marathon until you start to feel semi-human again.

Hangover cures that actually work.
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