Holiday parties, hectic schedules, the close of another year – it’s easy to put off starting addiction treatment. But promising yourself that you’ll get help for addiction just as soon as the New Year rolls around may not be the best course of action.
By delaying treatment, you’re prolonging your suffering and taking unnecessary risks. Here are five reasons that it’s a good idea to get help for addiction now.
1. Alcohol and substance use picks up around the holidays, meaning added risk of DUIs, overdoses and other bad outcomes. Eat, drink and be merry, right? People who abuse drugs and alcohol may mistakenly believe they’re the life of the party, when in fact their substance use causes stress or embarrassment for themselves or family members. Don’t let substance use cause any more damage to your life or those you love.
2. The holidays can trigger depression and anxiety in those who are vulnerable. Holiday TV and Christmas cards depict the holiday season as a time of joy and family togetherness. But for people who are struggling with substance abuse or co-occurring mental health conditions, their feelings may not match up with what’s going on around them. They may feel lonely and isolated, which can contribute to making their alcohol or substance use even worse.
3. Getting free from work or school may be easier. Work and school commitments tend to slow down this time of year. It may be easier to take some time to focus on your health and sobriety, or to take time off without feeling you need to explain where you are.
4. Sobriety is the greatest gift you can give those you love. There is nothing more important to the people you love than knowing you’re healthy and safe. Give them that peace of mind by entering treatment and making the changes that will allow you to be totally present for your family in the months to come.
5. January 1 is just a date on the calendar. Many people resolve to get sober after one last holiday hurrah. But there is nothing special about January 1, which is one of the reasons why most New Year’s resolutions are soon forgotten. For those who are serious about changing their life for the better, the best day to start is today.