An IV Treatment Hangover Cure?

There's this new health trend happening, and we're not sure how we feel about it. In the last few years, clinics have began springing up claiming that they can cure your hangover through an IV treatment. These treatments cost major bank, but if you have the money (generally between $120-$200), they claim that you will feel better within minutes. 


We all know how horrible a hangover feels. Shaky hands, upset stomach, nausea, a pounding headache; for most of us, one night of heavy drinking means we're looking at complete incapacity for anything but watching a Real Housewives marathon the next day (or maybe that's just my thing…but damn, I love that Carol Radziwill). So, we get the appeal. It'd be nice to be able to get totally blitzed and enjoy all the fun it brings without any of the physical consequences.

Clearly, a lot of people feel this way. Vegas has had the Hangover Heaven bus for years, so that hard-core partiers don't have to miss a second of their vacation due to a bummer morning-after. Australia just opened its first Hangover Clinic in Sydney (amidst some major backlash from health advocates), and in New York, you can either get you IV drip in the traveling Hangover Curebus, or pay a bit more to have a registered nurse come to your apartment to administer the treatment.


In all cases, you're hooked up to an IV that's filled with saline, and depending on the company, and what you'd like to pay, a whole host of other vitamins and electrolytes. The treatment takes 30-45 minutes, after which you're supposed to feel like your best, healthiest self.


Regardless of what any of these companies claim, it's hard to know whether, scientifically, this treatment works. This may be surprising, but scientists are still pretty unclear on exactly why we experience hangovers in the first place. 

There are quite a few theories, including dehydration, and the way our bodies metabolize alcohol, but science still hasn't found a definitive explanation for why we feel alcohol's painful effects after it's completely left our systems. 

What this means is that there's a lot of anecdotal research as to what helps cure a hangover, but that's about it. As for the effectiveness of IV treatments, the reviews have been mixed. Most reviewers say they feel better than when they walked in, butmost agree that they still feel a bit under the weather, woozy, and overall, not that great.


On the one hand, we agree with the critics that this does promote unhealthy behaviors. While it's great that there's a way to feel moderately less shitty than you would otherwise, it's not like the IV drip is going to reverse the effects that too much drinking has on your liver. The horrible health effects are still there; you just feel less miserable. Still, sometimes, we all party a bit too hard, and sometimes that partying coincides with a weekend where we have to have it together. We could see this treatment being pretty useful at a wedding weekend where you have a big role and need to be able to give a damn good speech and organize a room after drinking just a bit to heartily the night before (this exact scenario happened to me, sans IV, and I was not at my best). 


Our final takeaway? If you have the money for a one time special occasion and need to feel better fast, we say go for it. But keep in mind that drinking too much really is horrible for your body, and it's a really bad thing to let it become a habit. That's where that hefty price tag proves to actually be a blessing. I'd rather pay for all seven seasons of the Real Housewives of New York on itunes then shell out $200 for a half-assed feel better IV treatment. But again, maybe that's just me (Who else loves that Bethenny Frankel...anyone?).