You Learn Nothing From Hangovers

“Never again”? Don’t lie. It doesn’t matter how hungover you get, it doesn’t matter how much you regret your actions, and it doesn’t matter what you tell your porcelain throne—you’ll be drinking again before long.

That’s the gist of a study published in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research Researchers. They had a few hundred young Missourians keep a diary of their drinking episodes, detailing when they drank and when they got hungover. This lasted twenty-one days, with the participants reporting a whopping 2,276 drinking episodes (divided amongst a few hundred people, of course).

So, if someone got hungover, how much longer did they wait before their next drink? Six hours. Yep, that’s it. Actually, once you take into account history of alcohol abuse, day of the week, usual drinking frequency, and so on, the impact of hangover disappears.

There’s one exception, though: if someone’s stressed about their finances, a hangover will help them delay buying their next drink. However, according to the researchers, “hangover has, at best, a modest or inconsistent influence on the timing of subsequent alcohol use among frequent drinkers.”

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