#5ForFreshers: 5 Tips on Not Dying from Alcohol Poisoning


My most crystal clear memory from fresher’s will forever be my boyfriend sprawled out on my bed, gracefully retching onto the floor after drinking, well… literally everything.

Being a Yorkshireman, the night began with some steady pints of Guinness. This was then followed by some Foster’s, Budweiser, tequila shots, what I think what a vodka shot, and finally more Budweiser and half a dozen VKs in The Old Firestation. It was quite a night to say the least. So, to save you many headaches, and to up your chances of attending a 9am lecture by at least 0.2%, here are five tips to help handle the devil’s juice.

1. Mixing different types of alcohol

After reading all that above, hopefully you’ll want a little lesson in how to mix your drinks well. Well, I’ve got some bad news. No matter what crazy rhymes you know about mixing types of alcohol, there is no proven order of drinking that will make you not feel ill.

A healthy adult body can only remove 10mg of alcohol an hour, so if you drink too fast, you’re in the hands of the Lord. By the Lord, I mean the Devil. If you start with liquor, you’re also likely to not keep track of what you’ve drank.

So the moral of the story is drink steady and try and remember what you’ve drank. You might still feel rough in the morning, but at least you’ll be able to proudly count off on your fingers in the morning the amount of shots you had.

2. Alcohol and energy drinks

 Redbull and Vodka is good. Oh so good, especially when TOFS dished it out in Gorillaz cups for a couple weeks. However, like the mum-friend I am, I must warn all you freshers that there is too much of a good thing. One, maybe two, is good. However, more one can of Redbull has your whole sugar intake for the day in it, and you will be hanging over a toilet with streaming eyes by 2am if you drink a lot of energy drinks with too much hard liquor.

 Remember to just chill for a bit, treat yourself to a sip of water and a calm vodka diet Coke instead.

The Old Fire Station will be the final blow to many of your livers. At least the drinks are cheap(ish).

3. Alcohol and drugs

We’re students, some of us do drugs, let’s not pretend about that here. Drugs and not going to prison really don’t mix, neither does drugs and alcohol.

Having been trained in CPR by a former club bouncer, I heard some pretty horrible stories about students going into cardiac arrest because their body couldn’t handle a drug-alcohol cocktail. This was almost a daily occurrence in some clubs he worked in.

I’m all for hitting the vodka and having a good time, but seriously, don’t risk it. 

4. Treating alcohol poisoning

 So you (or your beloved/bestie) is throwing up, passing out, can’t talk, and has hypothermia. That can only mean one thing… they have unlocked the last level of drunk: alcohol poisoning! Congratulations, now here’s the low down of what to do.

 If they’ve passed out, then just pop them into the recovery position so they don’t choke on their own sick. And here’s how to do the recovery position if you don’t know it.

 If they are conscious then give them some water, sit them up and sling a blanket or jumper around them while you phone for some help. It is recommended that you phone 999 if you suspect someone has alcohol poisoning, but a ring through to the NHS helpline on 111 will help you confirm is your human mini-bar really needs an ambulance or not if you’re hesitant to phone the paramedics at 4am.

Welcome to Royal Bournemouth Hospital A&E. Hopefully a place your night out won’t finish at…

5. Hangover cures

 Netflix is the first step in surviving any hangover. Lower your screen brightness and enjoy some non-alcoholic bingeing for once. The second step involves loads of water, because I know your body didn’t receive a single drop of the stuff the night before. Don’t kid yourself, drink up. If you can handle eating something, things packed with vitamins will really help. If you can’t handle food, try some vitamin water.

 Sugar and carbs will also help you stop feeling shaky and also soak up some of the leftover alcohol from the night before. A combo of potato waffles and Lucozade has healed me more than any NHS staff ever could. Also, Wetherspoons is also very dimly lit, warm and carb-loaded. A great environment to sober up in if you can handle the sight of a pint glass again.

So there you have it, 5 useful tips on everyone’s favourite liquid. Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, just a Fresher’s Week veteran who wants to make sure you don’t make the same mistakes I did. Anyway, happy drinking, and stay safe, kids.