Experts reveal surprising reasons why some people get the ‘hangover horn’ after a night of drinking (even when they feel like they’re dead), as patients complain of a libido like ‘a wild animal’

For many, the thought of sex the day after a heavy drinking session is repulsive. Your breath is hot, your head is pounding and you stink.

But for a significant portion of us – especially men – our libido spikes when we’re hungover.

‘Why do I get so horny when I’m hungover?’ reads one post on Reddit: “There has to be a science behind it. After a night out I always feel like a wild animal.’

Another reads: ‘Why am I so horny when I’m hungover, no matter how much sex I had the night before? Has anyone else experienced this and know why?’

There are hundreds of similar posts on online forums, and the “hangover horn phenomenon” has confused doctors because of its unexpected nature.

Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a New York City-based neuropsychologist, told that having sex during a hangover “may sound counterintuitive,” but the effects of alcohol from the night before trickle down to the next day, making you feel more sexually adventurous feels.

Sex releases hormones that help reduce pain and improve mood – which can be useful if you’re suffering from a hangover that leads to headaches, body aches and anxiety

It is a generally accepted fact that drunkenness makes people playful because it loosens them up and lowers their inhibitions, and it temporarily increases the amount of dopamine (known as the happiness hormone) in the brain.

And dr. Hafeez said these physiological changes fuel the increase in sex drive.

She said: ‘Chronic alcohol consumption disrupts the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain, including dopamine, serotonin and endorphins.

‘As the body attempts to restore these levels to normal during withdrawal, fluctuations in mood and arousal can occur, potentially leading to increased sexual desire.’

About twelve hours after you stop drinking and a hangover sets in, dopamine levels begin to drop.

While depressed dopamine levels can lead to lower libido and sexual dysfunction, hungover people seek out sex in an attempt to increase this hormone level and make themselves feel better.

Sex causes the release of dopamine, along with other mood-boosting chemicals such as endorphins and oxytocin.

Endorphins are brain chemicals that are activated by sex and have natural opiate-like properties.

They help reduce pain and improve mood – which can be useful if you’re suffering from a hangover that leads to headaches, body aches and anxiety.

Studies have also shown that pain can be significantly relieved by having sex or experiencing an orgasm.

And that doesn’t have to be with a partner. Additional research has shown that self-pleasure can also help with pain.

Sex can also lower cortisol levels, the main stress hormone, easing discomfort and worry the day after drinking.

Research into the libido during a hangover is very limited. One of the first detailed investigations came out of the University of Washington and the Kinsey Institute and found that there was a combination of things at play.

Scientists tested men’s ability to follow instructions for controlling erections while watching porn while drunk, and found that men who had been drinking had a harder time controlling their arousal.

They found that men who were drunk were worse than those who were sober at following instructions to get an erection or stay flaccid while watching the X-rated content.

Intoxicated men who were told to remain limp actually experienced more intense erections than those who were specifically instructed to “seize the opportunity.”

Dr. William George, lead author of the study, told This effect could last the next morning.

If a man has been drinking excessively the night before, the alcohol may not be completely cleared from his system by the time he wakes up, even though he feels sober.

Thus, the lack of erection control, as shown in the study, may be responsible for the unexpected craving the next morning.

Whether male or female, sexual desire can increase the morning after a heavy party due to a phenomenon known as alcohol myopia.

This is scientific parlance for tunnel vision – when someone focuses on one thought and ignores peripheral information.

So when the thought of sex crosses your mind, it may be the only thing you can focus on until you scratch the itch.

One Reddit user wrote: ‘Sex is all I can think about and is the first priority of the day no matter what is happening that day.’

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“Nothing better than hangover orgasms,” one Reddit user posted – to which another replied: “Can confirm, just had one.”

Another poster wrote: ‘I’m the same and I’m not a young man anymore, but when I’m really hungover I can jerk off ten to twelve times in less than six hours. In fact, I’m done and would start working on it again in a minute.’

Emily Morse, a sex therapist, said: ‘For a few minutes you feel something other than a pounding headache and a sour stomach.

‘You are temporarily freed from your physical hangover purgatory, which makes regular sex sensations feel like a gift from heaven.’

Similar to dopamine seeking, Dr. Hafeez said hungover people may turn to sex for comfort or distraction, which could provide temporary relief from hangover symptoms.

Finally, Dr. Hafeez said that societal expectations can have an influence.

She told this website: ‘Cultural attitudes and social norms around alcohol consumption and sex can influence individual behavior.

‘In some cultures or social circles, drinking alcohol and engaging in sexual activities may be closely linked or seen as acceptable forms of recreation, leading some people to associate the two activities even when hungover .’

Whatever the reason, according to Dr. Hafeez, sex is unlikely to address the underlying physiological causes of a hangover, including dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, poor sleep and toxic byproducts of alcohol.

She recommends hydrating, eating nutritious foods and getting plenty of rest.