Boozing causes hangxiety headache

Research from Macmillan Cancer Support this week reveals that three in 10 adults in the North of England admit to experiencing the feeling of ‘hangxiety’ in the past year.

Monday, 7th October 2019, 1:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th October 2019, 2:36 am

The charity explains this is a feeling of guilt or anxiety after a night of drinking and is calling on people in the North to have a hangxiety-free October and sign up to its Go Sober fundraising event.

The YouGov poll of UK adults suggests the booze-fuelled exploits that are most likely to trigger hangxiety afterwards include calling or messaging an ex-partner, breaking or losing a personal item and oversharing information.

Three in five of those who had called or messaged an ex-partner as a result of a night of drinking felt guilt or anxiety about it the following morning.

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Of those who had broken or lost a personal item, 59 per cent admitted experiencing hangxiety the following morning, while the same proportion of those who had overshared while drinking admitted to experiencing guilt or anxiety about their actions.

Behavioural psychologist, Jo Hemmings, explains: “The term hangxiety sums up that uncomfortable combination of feeling physically fragile after drinking alcohol coupled with a sense of anxiety or guilt about what we did while under the influence.

“It’s caused by alcohol leaving your system and depleting your levels of serotonin, the chemical that regulates mood, which can leave you feeling stressed the next day.”

The research was conducted to launch Macmillan’s Go Sober for October campaign, which sees fundraisers up and down the country give up alcohol for 31 days to raise money for people living with cancer.

The poll also revealed that a third of those who had drunk in the past year said they had spent more than they meant to on drinks, with more than half of these experiencing hangxiety as a result.

Meanwhile, 1 in 20 admitted to falling asleep in public during a night of drinking - although only just over a quarter of those (28 per cent) experienced hangxiety about it the following morning.

Kirsty Hobbs, Senior Fundraising Marketing Manager at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “Although some of the uncomfortable consequences people tell us they have experienced after drinking alcohol may raise a wry smile, at its heart is a serious cause.

“Macmillan’s Go Sober for October sees thousands of ‘sober heroes’ take on the month-long challenge to abstain from alcohol and raise money to help us support people living with cancer.

“To date, this event has raised more than £20 million to support people living with cancer and we’re looking forward to seeing what can be achieved this year.”