Think before you drink this Thanksgiving

Friday, November 18, 2022 Think before you drink this Thanksgiving

Black and white image of crowded bar scene

Thanksgiving break is an exciting time to catch up with friends from high school or your hometown who you haven’t seen in a while. You may plan to get together with friends on Wednesday to swap stories from college, laugh about what you did in high school and give updates about what’s new in your life. Also known as “Blackout Wednesday,” it’s considered one of the biggest drinking nights of the year and can be a time when high-risk drinking is prevalent.

If you didn’t drink with your friends in high school, drinking together now may feel like a novelty. And without the pressure of exams, early morning class, or work the next day, it can be easy to go overboard. Follow these tips to have a memorable November and enjoy your Thanksgiving break.

  • Plan Your Rides – When making plans, determine ahead of time how you’ll get home. Your hometown may be smaller than Lincoln, so if you are planning to use Uber or Lyft double check that they offer service in your town. If ridesharing isn’t an option, select a designated driver ahead of time or identify a family member you could call for a ride home.
  • Host at Home – If your parents or a friend’s parents are comfortable with it, consider staying in with friends instead of going out to bars. If you choose to drink, friends can stay the night and drive home in the morning instead of figuring out how to get home from bars.
  • Eat Before – The Thanksgiving holiday centers on food, but sometimes people will eat less the day before to “prepare” for the big meal on Thursday. That is not a healthy habit in and of itself, and if you mix drinking alcohol with minimal eating the alcohol will hit you much harder. If you choose to drink, be sure to eat a protein-heavy meal beforehand.
  • Drink Water – Drink lots of water before, during and after drinking alcohol. Try alternating alcoholic drinks with water to help you pace yourself. Drinking water can also combat the dehydration alcohol causes – no one wants to go into Thanksgiving Day with a hangover!
  • Cut Down – Although the day is commonly referred to as “Blackout Wednesday,” you should not plan to blackout to have a good time. As a matter of fact, 85% of Huskers do not agree with drinking to a point of blacking out. If you want to drink alcohol, enjoy a few drinks within your limits to have a fun time. Drinking within your limits is not only safer, but it also cuts down on the after-alcohol anxiety where you’re left wondering if you were annoying or did anything embarrassing; a feeling which can be amplified in your hometown.
  • Create a New Tradition – There are many ways to catch up with friends from home without involving alcohol at all. If you want to stay in, try watching a holiday movie or cooking a meal together. If you want to go out, try the latest restaurant or new activity in your hometown, or visit a favorite spot from your high school days.
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