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The Hype of ‘Hangover IV Lounges’- Are they worth it?

It's no secret that most of us like to enjoy a few drinks during the week as a way to unwind. Unfortunately, we can get a little carried away, and before we realize it, we're throwing shots back like it's our 21-run all over again. The next thing we know, we're waking up with a pounding headache, cottonmouth, and regret. We've tried the water chasers, carb-loaded breakfast, and popping pills before bed, but none do much to make a difference. What if we could walk around with an IV all day long? Or better yet, have one come to us, and in 30-60 minutes, feel as though last night never happened?

The History of the IV for Hangovers

The idea of treating hangovers with an IV drip appeared in 2012. Anesthesiologist Dr. Jason Burke started "Hangover Heaven" in Las Vegas- a mobile IV unit that comes to your hotel and provides IV therapy for relief. The idea became a success, and the expansion of the IV lounge has grown in the last (almost) decade, hitting coast to coast. IVs treat many symptoms, including rehydration, replacing vitamins, and other deficiencies. An IV contains a mixture of the fluids, electrolytes, vitamins, and other medications needed for an individual, such as anti-nausea and anti-inflammatory. Because IVs treat these symptoms so well, they've become the trending solution for party-goers when they've had a few too many alcoholic beverages.


3 R's: Rehydrate, Remove and Restore

Hangovers result from dehydration and nutrient depletion, which happen when a person consumes excess alcohol. The most crucial components to recovering from a hangover are the 3 R's: Rehydrate, Remove and Restore. Rehydrating our body is the most important because we cannot function otherwise. Next, we need to remove the toxins that have built up in the body from alcohol consumption. Last but not least, the nutrients lost during the night of heavy drinking need to be restored. 


The Cost...Yikes

Feeling back to yourself in less than an hour sounds great, but the price can be pretty steep for some. An IV lounge experience can cost anywhere from $80 to almost $1,000 per session. Different companies have separate packages and add-ons, but is it worth it for one hangover? Business Insider, Christian Storm, tried this experience for himself, combining multiple hard seltzers with shots as an experiment the night before. While waiting for his IV nurse to arrive in the morning, he unsurprisingly experienced quite a hangover. His "Super Package" contained saline infused with electrolytes, B-12, and B-complex injections (for the immune system and energy). All of this in one banana bag for the low price of $219. After the IV, everything seemed as if there was no alcohol, to begin with, that is, until the afternoon. 

Storm claims, "As the day wore on, I began to feel very queasy and experienced a bit of heartburn. I also felt like I was overheating at certain parts of the day. Later in the afternoon, I started getting an upset stomach. I wasn't feeling too hot."

Many studies question that a placebo effect may take over the actual science. Individuals receive the same care that medical professionals use to help patients with the same symptoms of nausea, dehydration, headaches, and more. An IV has to be administered by a medical professional (i.e., Nurse, doctor, EMT), but beware of the possible side effects, including scarring, infections, and bleeding. 

The Verdict?

Overall, the experience of an IV therapy lounge sounds intriguing. If you have a few hundred dollars to spend mindlessly, it's absolutely worth relieving some of your hangover symptoms. If not, there are cheaper, more effective ways to practice healthy rehydration after drinking, which will help ease hangover symptoms. Drinklyte's formula, for example, is just as effective as an IV, following the World Health Organization's protocols. Our Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS) is also extremely budget-friendly and convenient with subscriptions, so prevention is waiting for you when you're ready to drink.