How those struggling with alcohol addiction can prepare for the holidays

How those struggling with alcohol addiction can prepare for the holidays. (Source: WEAR-TV)

Alcohol is a part of many holiday traditions, and some may turn to it during times of stress.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says December is the most dangerous month for drug and alcohol-related deaths.

Lakeview Mental Health Therapist Sweneda Berrian agrees.

"A big one is because they don't have a plan or support. Emotions are followed by urges," Berrian added.

Berrian says those factors include seasonal depression, holiday parties and loneliness, they all can be triggers making the holidays harder for people who struggle with addiction.

But she says for those in recovery there are plenty of tricks to help survive the holiday fun.

"There is always hope and that is something we don't want to lose, an individual who is struggling with recovery can have just a wonderful time during the holidays than someone who is not, its just about strategizing beforehand," said Berrian.

She suggests first, have a recovery kit heading into the holidays.

That includes, having the numbers of your sponsors or other friends in recovery programmed into your phone.

If you go to a party, try to arrive early and leave early, and drive yourself so you can leave when you need to.

"This is a wonderful time like right now to be sitting down and thinking about what are the people, places, and things that I can help prevent a relapse," explained Berrian.

But in the end, some may decide its best to celebrate without alcohol.

"Making the recovery a priority as an individual who is struggling and as a support system is going to be key to maintaining that."

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