St. Patrick’s Day is a beloved holiday in America. While the day is full of fun and festivities, it’s also important to note the holiday comes with its own set of issues, most having to do with the drinking habits of some celebrants.

Paddy’s Day is the fourth-most popular drinking day of the year in the U.S. (preceded only by New Year’s Eve, Christmas and the Fourth of July), and from 2012–16, 269 drunk driving deaths related to St. Patrick’s Day celebrations were recorded. Nearly 69% of crash fatalities are the result of intoxicated drivers on the road from midnight to 6 a.m. on March 18.

This St. Patrick’s Day make the resolution to stay hydrated, and make drinking water as important as the green beers you consume. We’re not saying you can’t have fun with your friends, but make sure you have a safe ride or designated driver and drink enough water throughout the night. This week, we’re talking about the effects of alcohol and dehydration on the body and sharing a few tips to help you stay hydrated while you’re out painting the town green.

Effects of Alcohol and Dehydration

It’s common knowledge that alcohol dehydrates the body. That’s because alcohol is a diuretic—a substance that results in the body producing an increased amount of urine. When more fluid is lost than a person needs for the normal functioning of bodily processes, they become dehydrated.

However, that’s not the only reason alcohol can dehydrate you. Drinking to excess can also cause vomiting and night sweats, both of which would lead to further dehydration.

Strategies for Staying Hydrated

So, how can you avoid getting too dehydrated during your Paddy’s Day party? The general rule is to drink one 12-ounce glass of water for every alcoholic beverage you consume. In case you find it tough to stick to that schedule, you can follow these tips to stay hydrated while drinking.

Pregame with water: Drink extra water before going out. That way, even if you forget the rest of our tips, you will have begun your evening with a solid baseline for hydration.

Ask for a water back: Picklebacks (a shot glass of pickle brine commonly taken after a shot of whiskey which some claim lessens the afterburn) may be all the rage right now but asking for a water back is a great way to keep up your water intake.

Use sparkling water instead of tonic: Instead of a typical gin and tonic, use sparkling water to change up your usual mixed drink. Sparkling water has the same hydrating effects as regular tap water, making it an easy way to increase your H2O.

Guzzle before bedtime: Lastly, when you get home for the evening, chug a couple glasses of water—it’ll help you rehydrate before bed. We also recommend leaving yourself a glass on the bedside table for the morning—you’ll probably need it.

Thanks for keeping up with Quality Water Services—give us a call if you’re looking to introduce cleaner water into your life. And from the team at QWS, have a fun, safe and properly hydrated St. Patrick’s Day!