The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is here.
It can be a stressful time for anyone, but for addicts…even more so.
“Some people call this hurricane season. It’s really difficult for people with all the stressors, it’s really emotional.”
“Stressors like seeing family, going through the holidays, feeling as though you can’t drink anymore and you’re the odd man out.”
CEO and founder of Longbranch healthcare Chris Mcmahon as well as Director of Admissions Holland Counce say there’s a definite spike in relapses around the holidays.
“You definitely see an uptick in people who have either relapsed or for the first time are starting to see a lot of consequences for their drinking or drug use.”
“For the addict they say well I’ll do it after this one more big blowout.”
Experts recommend addicts be in constant communication with their support team and reach out for help if you suspect a problem.
“I would tell your aa support group that you’re going, have an escape plan, stay in touch with your sponsor, call your sponsor before you go, if you feel weird leave. there is nothing wrong with telling people no.”
And for Mcmahon and Counce, the advice comes from personal experiences.
Both are recovered addicts.
“It took a village for me to get well. it took my family, it took really good treatment, it took being put in a good environment. if it wasn’t for that, i’m not sure i’d still be here.”
As for families of loved ones suffering from addiction, Mcmahon and Counce say the best thing to do is hold the addict accountable to follow their recovery program.
“And remind them, if a situation is too stressful or triggering for them, it’s okay to say no.”
“If it’s highly stressing you out, don’t do it. you can always do it next year.”