Alcohol Awareness Week is running between 15th and 21st November. We dedicate this week to touch on struggles of alcohol addiction and its effect on our daily life.
Alcohol misuse affects 45% of men and 34% of women in Wales. Not only are they exposed to an increased risk of diseases, but also to falling into vicious circle of using alcohol as a coping mechanism to reduce the symptoms of mental health problems.
About 1 in 4 people in the UK experience a mental health problem each year, and many of those people try to mitigate their symptoms with alcohol. However, this has an exact opposite effect and is likely to make stress, anxiety, depression or other mental health problems much worse. The initial feeling of relaxation or euphoria are short-term, and they fade away causing the user to drink more just to hold on to those feelings.
Managing the addiction might seem like a tremendous milestone for both users and their families, but don’t worry, we are here for you.
We have prepared a few steps you can follow to begin your healing journey:
- Evaluate the costs and benefits of drinking – is it worth its cost?
Create a pros and cons list to visualise the costs of alcohol consumption. Include the average amount of alcohol you consume per week, price per bottle and multiply it by 4 to get the average monthly cost. Then create a list of benefits of quitting and compare them.
- Keep a record of your drinking
Observe your drinking habit for 3 to 4 weeks and keep a journal of how much you drink. Reviewing the results might help you realize the scale of your problem and help you set realistic goals.
- Set simple goals
Be realistic and set clear goals. Start with small steps like ‘I will limit my weekend drinking to 2 drinks per day’ or ‘I will not drink on Thursdays because my son has an early Friday sports class’.
- Drink slower
When you drink, sip slower and drink juice or water between alcoholic drinks. Make sure you are not drinking on an empty stomach and eat food when you drink.
- Search for coping strategies
There are numerous stories that people share with others of how they overcame the addiction. One of those will take place on our Mental Health & Wellbeing Show 2022. Charlotte Hopkins will introduce you to the complexity of needs of people using substances.
Make sure you book your spot for this seminar and check out our offer to find other seminars dedicated to mental health.
Strength doesn’t come from what you can do.
It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t.