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Alcohol use

Stress Drinking

Whether it’s stress from quarantining, worrying about your family’s health, or becoming an at-home teacher, it can become all too common to reach for wine or liquor as a technique to relax during this tough period.

But the National Institutes of Health (NIH) warns against alcohol habits that could suddenly spiral out of control.  Drinking too much may mean you’re consuming too much liquor at one time, drinking too often, or both, the NIH says.

The agency emphasizes that’s it’s important to be aware of how much you are drinking, whether your drinking pattern is risky, the harm that some drinking patterns can cause, and ways to reduce your risks.

If you need help analyzing your drinking habits, please visit Rethinking Drinking, which offers helpful tips, tools, and resources to help you understand your drinking patterns and to cut back if necessary.

During this pandemic, seeking treatment may become just another obstacle if you’re homebound. But if you’re seeking alcohol treatment while practicing physical distancing, there are several professionally led treatment and mutual-support group options available. Click here to learn more about physical distancing and treatment..

Another resource, the National Institutes on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse (NIAAA), has a Treatment Navigator that can help people find telehealth services as well as mutual-support groups.  Mutual-support groups can be particularly helpful during this challenging time. A growing number of groups have online communities. These groups can vary widely, so it’s important to try different ones to find a good fit. The Navigator can help you find some mutual support groups to consider.

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Overall, regardless of where or how you seek treatment, it’s important to look for approaches that are “evidence-based.” This means that the treatments are backed by large, well-designed studies. The Navigator will help you spot signs of higher-quality programs.

You can also take a look at this list of online support groups, apps, and podcasts from the American Society of Addiction Medicine, the NIH says.

In addition to support groups, people in recovery should also maintain a connection with their treatment counselor. While mutual-help groups are an excellent source of support and encouragement, they are usually not run by professional clinicians. Some issues may require the help of a trained health professional.

 

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