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  • Matt McTeague

Depression and Anxiety are Always Tough around the Holidays - As is Alcohol Abuse.


The holidays are here again! For many people, it’s a time for merriment, togetherness, social activities, music, and parties! However, according to surveys, the holiday period is also a time of increased alcohol abuse, depression, and anxiety. This is because individuals often face several pressures planning for the perfect holiday and meeting various financial burdens, which often send them into a tailspin. The number of social activities also increases during the holiday. And many people are unable to say no to alcohol offers, which can be disastrous, especially for those already battling alcohol abuse, anxiety, and depression.





Common Holiday Triggers

  • Family stress

  • Financial burdens

  • Parties

  • Changes to routine

Here are some tips on preventing depression, anxiety and avoiding alcohol abuse during the holidays.


#1. Say No or Stay Home


Alcohol is usually a huge part of the holiday festivities, and it might be tempting to take just a glass of alcohol and inadvertently travel down the path of alcohol abuse. If you don’t think you can say no when offered alcohol, it’s better for your health to stay at home. If you must attend, it’s helpful to have a simple preplanned response to decline an alcohol offer. You can also go along with a teetotaler who’ll ensure you stay sober. You could also go with your own non-alcoholic beverage to beat the temptation. Remember, your health is important and is solely your responsibility.


#2. Avoid or Manage Your Triggers


The holiday is filled with family and social obligations, expectations, and interactions that can trigger a relapse into alcoholism, depression, and anxiety. As such, it is essential to identify and manage situations before they arrive. ​If engaging in certain social activities or seeing certain family members can take a toll on your mental health, you may avoid them altogether and engage in other activities so that you can have fun during the holidays. You can also practice mindfulness meditation, take a walk, breathe deeply, and use other techniques that help you manage your stress.


#3. Stay Active During the Holidays


While the holiday period is often a season of high social interaction and togetherness, many people suffer from depression, anxiety, and alcohol abuse due to loneliness. If you decide to avoid social interactions with friends and family because they can be stressful to your health, it’s important to stay active. ​You can do this without compromising your health by engaging in community work. You can also connect with and support others in recovery.


#4. Don’t Skip Meetings


You might be tempted to skip meetings during the holidays. Finding support and confiding in others who’re also in recovery can help you prevent a relapse. Therefore, keep attending meetings in your area, and if you are out of town, find a meeting where you can find the needed support and encouragement.



Having fun during the holidays is essential. But it’s crucial to care for your health. If you need more help preventing alcohol abuse, depression, and anxiety this holiday period, do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

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