Being stuck at home is hard on us all, but lack of routine can be worse for some than loneliness. Experts warn that lockdown may see many in New Jersey realizing they have hidden substance problems.
With the state social distancing, many of us have grown familiar with isolation and boredom. The American Addiction Centers warns that, for some, these feelings can reveal a dependence on alcohol and drugs.
Addiction experts state that many addicts turn to rationalization, when they claim that their drinking or drug use is normal. This often involves saying that their behavior is strictly social. It’s easy to hide unhealthy habits in big groups, where binge drinking and taking drugs can be seen as “just for fun.”
However, with New Jersey shut under coronavirus, being stuck at home eliminates the shelter of partying and weekend hangouts. While people can still buy alcohol at many stores, bars and clubs being closed—and large gatherings canceled—means that alcoholics in denial are left facing an ugly reality.
“Because social gatherings are now prohibited…they may discover that when they are alone, their dependency on alcohol or drugs [is] more apparent,” says Dr. Lawrence Weinstein, Chief Medical Officer of American Addiction Centers.
Experts also warn that many in recovery will find lockdown especially hard. Boredom and loneliness can be strong triggers for falling back on old habits, and those recovering may need extra support to stay sober.
For more on signs of addiction and how to get help, visit the American Addiction Centers’ website.
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