Older people are hit harder by hangover while teenagers have a greater resistance to alcohol, says a new study.
US psychologist Elena Varlinskaya and other researchers studied the effects of alcohol on rats with the equivalent age to human teenagers and adults.
The rats - chosen because their brain development mimics that of humans - were dosed with alcohol and their movements monitored, reported the online edition of Daily Mail.
The dose given was equivalent, weight for weight, to a man or woman drinking three or four alcoholic drinks in quick succession.
Five minutes after being injected with alcohol, both age groups were more inhibited.
They were less playful, less active and groomed themselves and their fellow creatures less. Thirty minutes later, there was a noticeable difference between the groups.
While the adult rats were still sluggish, the younger animals were almost as frisky as rats that had not been given any alcohol at all, according to the report in the journal "Alcoholism: Clinical And Experimental Research".
Unpleasant physical symptoms associated with alcohol intoxication and hangover, which make adults stop drinking, are not experienced to the same degree by adolescents, Varlinskaya said.
It is something that many of us have long suspected - hangovers really do get worse as you get older.
The researchers have shown that teenagers have a greater resistance to alcohol.
Not only are they less clumsy and sleepy on the night itself, they do not suffer as much the next day.
It is not all good news, however, as youngsters may be lulled into a false sense of security, leading them to do untold damage to their health, Varlinskaya said.
This ability of adolescents to rapidly counteract some unpleasant alcohol effects may allow them to have more drinks per occasion.
"This pattern of binge drinking, being unsafe in general, might be extremely dangerous for adolescents, given that their brain is especially vulnerable to alcohol damage."