Partying without the piss up
Avoid a nasty hangover and the health risks of drinking too much alcohol
For anyone who wants to party with a clear head, we’ve put together some tips on enjoying a social life that doesn't focus solely on alcohol.
- Plan alternative nights out with friends that don't involve going to the pub, a nightclub or anywhere else that you'll be tempted to drink. Instead, maybe you could go out for something to eat, organise a film night at home or have a barbecue.
- If you’re going to a party where alcohol is on offer and you’re trying not to drink too much, bring along a favourite non-alcoholic bottle of drink instead of the usual beer or wine. Then you’ll know that there won’t just be tap water on offer!
- Let your friends know that you don’t want to drink alcohol or don’t plan to drink much. Ask them not to buy you alcoholic drinks and not to try to pressure you into drinking.
- Watch out for high sugar levels in cocktails! Avoid drinking too many sugary drinks, such as coke, lemonade, sugary juices or coffee/ tea with lots of added sugar. If you’re making your own cocktails, add as little sugar as possible. Sugary drinks rot your teeth, as well as upping your daily calorie intake.
If you're going to drink, then learn how to minimise the damage
- Eat before you start drinking. This slows down the rate that alcohol is absorbed into your body. Watch out for pub snacks though, the salt will make you thirstier.
- Drink slowly! Don't gulp down three pints in an hour just because you've had a tough day at work. Binge drinking (five or more drinks in one session) is a huge problem in Ireland and it is dangerous for your health.
- If you feel yourself getting drunk, then slow down or stop until you sober up again. It means that at the end of the night you've less chance of being the drunken eejit with vomit on their clothes.
- You've heard it a hundred times, but drink lots of water or a non-alcoholic drink while you're drinking alcohol. Before you go to bed, drink as much water as you can. It will stop you getting too dehydrated (that's what causes the hangover headache).
- Don't accept drinks from strangers and don't steal drinks from other tables.
- Make sure you've got a safe way to get home.
- Keep an eye on friends. If any of them are really pissed, make sure they get home safely and don't let them do anything too crazy!