How to Avoid Alcohol & Drugs Over the Holidays During COVID


People recovering from drug or alcohol addiction already have a lot to think about when the holidays roll around. Christmas and New Year’s Eve are some of the nation’s most popular drinking holidays, as they bring with them plenty of opportunities to host parties and reconnect with loved ones over celebratory drinks. Even workplaces will host festive happy hour events for coworkers. If you’re recovering from addiction, it’s understandable that you may be anxious about navigating this season and avoiding a relapse. What can make this time especially difficult, however, is the fact that our nation and the world are still dealing with the presence of COVID-19.

In the United States, COVID-19 cases have skyrocketed in the last couple of months. There have now been more than 15.5 million reported cases in the country and over 290,000 deaths. To combat these rising numbers, countless states and localities have imposed stay-at-home orders and are maintaining social distancing guidelines, meaning there will be fewer parties and family gatherings this year.

While it can be beneficial for people in recovery to not have to attend any Christmas parties this year, it can also be dangerous to be alone. It’s well known among recovery centers that a major part of the recovery process is connection. The connection is why facilities like Decision Point Center offer group therapy and other activities that encourage group discussion and bonding. Being able to talk with someone about your struggles and lean on loved ones for support is important in getting past the particularly tough obstacles you’ll face throughout your life.

Our team has helpful tips for you to keep in mind as you enter this holiday season with the intent of staying sober.

1. Have a Zoom even with loved ones or hold an outdoor picnic – without alcohol

You can still have family and friend gatherings in a safe manner. Consider having a game night over Zoom so you can still have facetime with the people you love, or even meet up outdoors for a fun daytime lunch. Having events during the daytime and avoiding referring to them as “parties” can be a good way to discourage the use of alcohol, if you’re not comfortable with asking people to refrain from drinking.

2. Look up online therapy or support group options

Plenty of therapists are continuing to offer virtual sessions so they can see clients, and support groups are meeting online, too. If you don’t already have a therapist or group, it could be helpful to research your options so you have extra support even if you’re confined to your house or live alone.

3. Give back to the community

There are many opportunities for individuals to volunteer or give back to nonprofit organizations or charity drives during the holidays. Volunteering with a local food shelter or community center can be a great way to serve others and keep yourself busy so you have less idle time to think about drugs, alcohol, or other destructive habits.

There may be many triggers and temptations to abuse drugs and alcohol, but being prepared, maintaining your relationships, and remembering to access the healthy coping mechanisms you learned in your program can help you get through this holiday season.

Hope Begins Here

Our team at Decision Point Center has been dedicated to improving lives through alternative addiction treatment since 2004. From inpatient and outpatient programs to family therapy and EMDR trauma therapy, we offer a wide range of treatments to design to address your every need and concern. We also have relapse prevention programs to prepare you or your loved one for a successful recovery. Our team can help you identify potential triggers and develop healthy coping skills so you can navigate tough situations and learn to seek help when you’re in danger. We can give you the tools and confidence you need to stay sober and reclaim ownership of your life.

Call Decision Point Center if you’re ready to commit to sobriety today at (844) 292-5010, or contact us online. Our facility offers treatments for a variety of drug and alcohol addictions and substance use disorders.

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