Revelers beware: A hangover lasts longer if you take acetaminophen or aspirin at the wrong time.

Perfect finish

Tonight, many of us will hoist a few to wish friends and family a healthy and prosperous New Year.

But when you finally get ready to turn in, you might sense that you’ve enjoyed a few too many pints or chardonnays.

That’s the moment when many will reach for the acetaminophen or aspirin as a hangover preventive.

Here’s a friendly New Year’s tip… Don’t do it!

To get past a hangover, your body has to process and eliminate alcohol. Acetaminophen and aspirin can delay that process and lengthen a hangover.

Even worse, the combination of alcohol and acetaminophen can put dangerous stress on your liver.

Let’s say, for instance, that a woman comes down with a cold after Christmas. She begins taking cold medication that contains acetaminophen. Her congestion causes headaches, so she also takes Tylenol Sinus for a few days.

On New Year’s Eve, if she tries to head off a hangover with a few Tylenol tablets, she might feel like she has the flu the next day. (That’s how the onset of liver toxicity feels.) So she takes some more Tylenol. Then she fixes a cup of coffee.

If her liver had a “maintenance required” light, it would be flashing furiously.

So take good care of yourself (and your liver) tonight. If you overdo the cocktails, drink plenty of water before you go to bed.

And skip the acetaminophen chaser.

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