While we haven’t found any scientific literature or peer-reviewed studies to confirm taking DHM will prevent a phenibut hangover, let us run through why we think it makes sense and how much you should take.
What is Phenibut
Phenibut (sometimes spelled “phenybut”) is a molecule closely related to GABA — a neurotransmitter responsible for regulating and slowing down neuronal firing.
It’s GABA that’s partially responsible for feelings of tiredness with levels increasing closer to your circadian rhythm’s natural sleep time. It is also strongly associated with the serene feeling, muscle relaxation, and co-ordination issues that come with drinking alcohol.
Phenibut is a synthetic GABA molecule (γ-aminobutyric acid) with the addition of a phenyl group in the ‘β’ position. This change allows it to bypass the blood brain barrier and elevate GABA levels in the brain far more effectively.
It’s used as a sleep aid and to help in reducing anxiety. While it works extremely well for sleep, there are some negatives to its use including mild hangovers at lower doses. To hide this and the mixed testimonials available online, it’s often included in supplements as “ph-GABA” instead of “Phenibut”.
Most commonly Phenibut is used for social anxiety in situations where large amounts of alcohol would be consumed. It’s used for its similar effects to alcohol without the toxic alcohol dehydrogenase and acetaldehyde byproducts of drinking alcoholic beverages.
How does Phenibut cause hangovers?
The positive effects of phenibut don’t just mimic alcohol’s, but the negative ones do too. Including the dreaded hangover.
Aside from merely the hangovers, phenibut also builds tolerance significantly faster than alcohol. It’s a substance renowned for taking more and more to get the same sleep or anti-anxiety effects.
Phenibut can be psychologically addicting due to the relief it can provide from stressful situations and uncomfortable social encounters. This can lead to prolonged use, which unfortunately comes with its own issues including withdrawal.
Phenibut hangover symptoms
- Brain fog
- Rebound anxiety
Most of these (which are also shared with phenibut withdrawal symptoms) are caused by the dramatic increase of GABA Phenibut creates.
How long does a Phenibut hangover last?
Phenibut is capable of increasing brain levels of GABA so dramatically that the withdrawal can last for hours or days.
Generally speaking, lower doses (such as those used for sleep) rarely produce a hangover or rebound effect. Larger doses, however, send the body into withdrawal.
With so much exogenous GABA in the brain, the body’s own production is dramatically reduced to avoid levels getting too high. It takes some time for the body to start this production up again, meaning there’s often a period when Phenibut is leaving the body but no more GABA is being produced.
This can have the opposite effect for what Phenibut is often taken for, and increase anxiety and restlessness.
When to use it and the correct phenibut dosage
Due to GABA’s rather broad applications, phenibut can be used for many different purposes. It can work very effectively too provided the dose is limited to achieve the positives while limiting any side effects.
The following isn’t medical advice, but comes from our own use of phenibut, along with scientific literature and testimonials.
250-750mg approximately 1 hour before bed
Generalised anxiety dosage
250mg twice a day — remembering to take several days off per week to limit tolerance.
Social anxiety dosage
500-1500mg one hour before the anticipated social interaction
Alcohol replacement (higher doses)
1500-3000mg — with plenty of water; starting at lower doses to assess tolerance and interactions
Can Phenibut be used to cure an alcohol hangover?
All logic points to ‘no’ but there are several reports on reddit and bodybuilding.com that suggest that it might be useful.
We don’t think combining the two is a good idea and absolutely don’t recommend it. Both phenibut and alcohol are both central nervous system depressants and the combination may be worse than either one alone.
With caution, here are the quotes from the sources:
Does Dihydromyricetin prevent a Phenibut hangover?
Dihydromyricetin works in reducing alcohol hangovers by supporting the liver and lowering the activity at GABA receptors in the brain.
Because phenibut has similar effects as alcohol in increasing gamma-Aminobutyric acid in the brain, DHM may very well help ‘sober’ someone up and act as a phenibut hangover cure. We haven’t seen any scientific literature to support using DHM for phenibut hangovers, but after review it does make sense.
One of the strongest areas Dihydromyricetin (or Raisin Tree Extract) helps with in alcohol intoxication is reducing GABA. Since Phenibut does this almost exclusively as its structure suggests, DHM should have a profound anti-phenibut effect.
This isn’t something we’ve tried, but we don’t see any contra-indication or reason why they couldn’t be combined to stop or reduce the negative effects.
With that said, please speak with your physician if you’re considering this or have any related health conditions.
If you do decide to try using Dihydromyricetin to stop phenibut hangovers, please do let us know in the comments!
For more detailed information about how Dihydromyricetin works to reduce GABA levels in the brain see this post.
Using DHM as a phenibut hangover cure
As with alcohol, the best time to take Dihydromyricetin to prevent a hangover is just before bed. It also helps improve sleep and retain muscle tension, so you’ll snore less and won’t wake up with aching muscles and joints.
We’d recommend trying 300mg Dihydromyricetin per 1g phenibut consumed.