Hangxiety and How to Overcome It

This year, Alcohol Awareness Week has a focus on mental health, which now more than ever is important to explore. It was reported that alcohol consumption among students, as well as the wider population increased in the Spring during Lockdown and continued into the summer. With the night’s drawing in and a second lockdown upon us, looking after our mental and physical health is vital to staying well.

This year, Alcohol Awareness Week has a focus on mental health, which now more than ever is important to explore.

It was reported that alcohol consumption among students, as well as the wider population increased in the Spring during Lockdown and continued into the summer.

A survey commissioned by Alcohol Change.org asked all current and former drinkers: To what extent they agreed or disagreed with the statement “overall, I have drunk more alcohol than usual during lockdown”? More than a quarter (28%) of people agreed.

With the night’s drawing in and a second lockdown upon us, looking after our mental and physical health is vital to staying well.

Have you ever woken up following a heavy night of drinking and had ‘beer fear?’ Terrified of what you did, what you said, how you behaved and what you can’t remember? Staring at the ceiling too anxious to face your housemates?

 

Well, you’re not alone!

Hangxiety can happen for a variety of reasons.

If you’re using alcohol to manage social anxiety, alcohol can increase your confidence and feeling of relaxation. If this feeling isn’t something you’re used to it can be hard to stop once you’ve started resulting in you drinking more and more to a point of passing out or blacking out.

The following day the anxiety is back, there patchiness in your memory of the night before and you have all the negative effects of a hangover on top of this.

This is a recipe for Hangxiety – so, what’s the solution?

Get up and get moving! Lying in bed thinking about what you may or may not have done last night isn’t going to help you.

You’re dehydrated, you’re tired (because, drunk sleep is basically no sleep) and you’re hungry.

Four simple points to follow as the bare minimum if you’re a victim of Hangxiety:

  1. Get up, brush your teeth and drink some water (if you’re feeling fancy you could even have a shower).           
  2. Eat something – Bananas are a winner, eggs are second best but really anything nutritious - an empty stomach is enough to make anyone want to burst into tears. (If you’ve been savvy you will have stocked up on breakfast supplies the day before.)                                                      
  3. Talk to your friends – Make contact, don’t wait for them to get in touch with you. Call them, video call them… text messages can be so confusing (especially when your head is playing games with you) let them know how you’re feeling.                                                                         
  4. Go for walk even if it’s to the shop, around the block or to a friend’s house – getting out the house, even for short amount of time, will leave you feeling less guilty for being stuck to sofa for the rest of the day.                                                                                                                 

If this scenario sounds all too familiar why don’t you contact the Wellbeing Service at UWE Bristol and ask to be given an appointment with SPACED Drug & Alcohol Service Becky Risley Senior Drugs and Alcohol Practitioner UWE/DHI. If you are struggling and you ever find yourself needing someone to talk to, needing a safe space, needing someone who would listen with no judgements, the UWE Wellbeing Service and The Students’ Union Advice Centre are here for you. Please contact them and they will be happy to offer their support.