I think you will agree, the UK has seen an increase in alcohol consumption during COVID-19. The bigest increase was during the 1st furlough period in the summer. Many people use alcohol to deal with stressful events, such as losing a job or bereavement. Events like this can trigger heavy drinking,which can lead to alcohol dependence and health problems.
Do you find it difficult to enjoy yourself or relax without having a drink? It’s possible you’ve become dependent on alcohol.
The NHS estimates that just under 1 in 10 (8.7%) men in the UK & 1 in 20 (3.3%) UK women show signs of #alcohol dependence.
Being dependent on alcohol means you feel you’re not able to function without it, that drinking becomes an important, or sometimes the most important, factor in your life.
Like many other drugs, alcohol can be both physically and psychologically addictive.
Alcohol dependence can run in the family, it could be in your genes or it could be a result of family attitudes to alcohol.
These are some signs to look out for that may suggest you’re becoming dependent on alcohol:
- Worrying about where your next drink is coming from & planning social, family & work events around alcohol
- Finding you have a compulsive need to drink & it hard to stop once you start
- Waking up & drinking – or feeling the need to have a drink in the morning
- Feelings of anxiety, alcohol-related depression & suicidal feelings – these can develop because regular, heavy drinking interferes with neurotransmitters in our brains that are needed for good mental health
- Suffering from physical withdrawal symptoms, such as sweating, shaking & nausea, which stop once you drink alcohol.
Concerned? Talk to your GP who can refer you to local alcohol services.
If you have a issue with alcohol in the workplace, please contact us.
Links to websites that can offer personal support.