ResLife: Alcohol Awareness Week
I hope you are all doing well and excited for a well-deserved holiday!
It has undoubtedly been the most stressful time mentally in the UK and around the world.
Alcohol and mental health are the themes for this week’s Alcohol Awareness week.
Here are 3 tips for your well-being during this pandemic:
- Stay connected with your loved ones; you’re never alone
- Mind what you eat and exercise
- Treat yourself whether that’s ordering dessert, having a lay in or even drinking
Why do people choose to drink?
Drinking can be great, a great way to relax, let loose and get your mind off things… But track your drinking. There’s nothing worse than going off track.
Alcohol doesn’t help in the long term of anything; loneliness, depression or boredom. Overuse of alcohol can seriously worsen the symptoms of mental health problems. Especially Low mood and anxiety.
Why do people choose not to drink?
Some people choose not to drink simply because there are other ways to relax, cope and have fun. Others have had negative experiences with alcohol, and found alternatives from drinking. Such as, eating chocolate, a hot bath/shower, playing video games, trying out a new hobby, and even yoga. Some people may not drink for religious or cultural reasons, but the choice is yours.
How much is too much?
Most alcohol ‘creeps up’ on us and over time find ourselves more drunk than we expected.
- It's safest not to drink more than 14 units per week.
- It’s better to spread this number of units over 3 days
- Alcohol is harmful for the development of the brain, bones and hormones.
- Alcohol is linked to 60+ medical conditions counting liver disease, 6 forms of cancer and depression.
- Yes, alcohol can make you more open and confident BUT It slows your mental and physical reactions and reduces your ability to think, reason and remember.
- Frequent drinking in early adulthood may also increase your risk of developing early-onset dementia
- long-term alcohol-health risks are generally higher for women than men, men face much higher risks of immediate harm, like injuries.
- Can cause ARBD (Alcohol-related brain damage)
If you think you have drinking habits there are ways to cut down and get help.
Scoring 15 and more, it’s best to discuss further details with your GP or your local alcohol service. Scoring 20 and more, you are at risk of alcohol dependence and should speak to GP ASAP.
Suddenly stopping drinking can be dangerous and can even lead to death, if your body is dependent on alcohol. If you are thinking about cutting down or stopping consuming alcohol as a whole please do so cautiously and gradually. Please speak to your GP for advice.
Keep track of your drinking using the free app ‘Try Dry’ it helps track your intake with charts and graphs, plus see your units, calories and money saved when you cut down. You can also earn badges for days off or reducing your units.
Finding support remotely
- Alcoholics Anonymous, whose helpline is open 24/7 on 0800 9177 650. If you would prefer, you can also email them at firstname.lastname@example.org or live chat via their website at www.alcoholics-anonymous.org.uk.
- If you are looking for urgent support please contact the Samaritans, who are available 24/7 on 116 123 or email@example.com.
- Drinkline, a free, confidential helpline for people who are concerned about their drinking, or someone else's. Call 0300 123 1110 (weekdays 9am–8pm, weekends 11am–4pm)
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