Today marks the end of Alcohol Awareness Week in the UK, raising awareness of the link between alcohol and mental health, and encouraging discussion about alcohol issues and the stigma surrounding them.
A poll released earlier this year from alcohol charity Alcohol Change UK showed that more than a quarter (28%) of people who have ever drunk alcohol think they have been drinking more during lockdown. And as lockdown eased over the summer, two in three (66%) expected to continue drinking as they had been during lockdown (49%), or even drink more (17%).
One in five (19%) of those surveyed said they had drunk alcohol as a way to handle stress or anxiety during lockdown. Of those who drank more heavily during lockdown (nine plus units on each drinking day), 40% had drunk as a response to stress or anxiety.
In Shetland, the Recovery Hub and Community Network offers support to anyone, about their own or others alcohol use.
Amanda Pearson, from the Recovery Hub and Community Network, said: “It’s been a difficult year for everyone, and with continued uncertainty around the pandemic and our dark winter months ahead, it’s not set to get any easier. Across the UK, many people are turning to alcohol to cope with stress and anxiety and there’s a real risk of more mental health problems as a result. We’re here to help those who are struggling with alcohol to take control of their drinking and support people on the path to recovery.”
You can take the “Check your Drinking” quiz on the Alcohol Change UK website at: https://alcoholchange.org.uk/alcohol-facts/interactive-tools/check-your-drinking
To contact the Recovery Hub and Community Network in Shetland, call 01595 744402 or email email@example.com or the NHS Shetland Substance Misuse Recovery Service at the Lerwick Health Centre on 01595 743006.
More information is also available on the Shetland Alcohol and Drug Partnership Facebook and Instagram pages.
- Alcohol Awareness Week (16-22 November) is a chance for the UK to get thinking about drinking. It’s a week of awareness raising and campaigning for change, with this year’s theme being alcohol and mental health. For more information please look up: www.alcoholchange.org.uk/alcoholawarenessweek
- The research quoted was commissioned by Alcohol Change UK and released earlier this year - https://alcoholchange.org.uk/blog/2020/drinking-in-the-uk-during-lockdown-and-beyond