(Green Bay, Wis.) – It’s been two years since COVID-19 struck and we continue to see the impact. April is National Alcohol Awareness Month, a perfect time to take a look and assess whether the pandemic has led you down the road to addition.

“In the two years of the pandemic we have seen increased depression, anxiety and substance use,” said Tina Baeten, Clinical Supervisor of the Jackie Nitschke Center. “In fact, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) reported that 13% of Americans started or increased substance use as a way of coping with the stress of the pandemic. Meanwhile, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse & Alcoholism (NIAAA) recently reported that that alcohol-related deaths jumped 25% from 2019 to 2020.”

How do you know if you’ve crossed the line into alcohol addiction?  Here are some warning signs:

  • You often drink more than you intend to, and over a longer period of time than you thought
  • You have a strong desire or urge to drink alcohol
  • Most of your activities are focused on drinking; you pass on events or activities that don’t include drinking
  • You’re experiencing problems at work or in your personal life as a result of your drinking.
  • You have to drink more to feel intoxicated

“If any of those warning signs apply to you, it’s time to seek help,” Baeten added. “It can certainly be difficult to take that first step. Getting sober isn’t easy, but it is possible with the right help.”

The Jackie Nitschke Center offers treatment, support and education to individuals and families through inpatient and outpatient services for those facing substance addictions. More information is available at www.jackienitschkecenter.org.

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