We’ve all seen it on tv. A part in the show where someone suddenly runs for coffee in a bid to sober someone up. But does it actually work?
It’s one of the most popular medical myths (yes, myths) out there, that drinking coffee will somehow make you sober. The truth is, no amount of coffee — black or otherwise — will make a drunk person sober. The only way to regain sobriety is to “sleep it off” as they say, which literally means, letting the alcohol work its way through your system.
So why then, do so many people believe drinking coffee will make them sober? The reason is because when you drink coffee, it counteracts with the sedative effects of alcohol. Since drinking alcohol slows down your brain’s processes and coffee is a known stimulant, the countereffect is the feeling of (more) alertness, which is not the same as being sober.
Is coffee good after drinking alcohol?
As a matter of fact, doctors say drinking coffee when intoxicated is just a bad idea in general since that renewed feeling of alertness can give some people the impression they’re less intoxicated than they really are. This could lead to bad decisions such as feeling fine enough to drive, when in fact, they are still drunk.
What does help you sober up? What is the quickest way to get sober?
Time. Your body needs time to metabolize the alcohol you’ve drank. You can try drinking water to flush out toxins and fruit juices, which although will not affect the symptoms of intoxication, can help the body metabolize the alcohol faster.
But the bottom line is there is no way to sober up in 30 minutes or become less drunk until your liver has had time to process the alcohol.
How long does it take to sober up?
Your liver can only process one liter of alcohol per hour, but the truth is the amount you drink and the type of alcohol you consume also play important factors in how long it will take you to sober up since some alcohols, such as hard liquors, are absorbed faster.
Each person also metabolizes alcohol at a different rate, so there is no one answer to the question of how long does it take to sober up.