April is Alcohol Awareness Month
Alcohol use in the U.S. has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many individuals are using alcohol to cope with fear, anxiety, boredom and loneliness.
Women have especially been impacted, with some studies finding that binge drinking among women increased by 41% during 2020.
April is Alcohol Awareness Month. It’s an opportunity to increase your awareness about alcohol misuse, the possible causes, and how to prevent it.
Reducing or abstaining from alcohol
Whether you choose to reduce your alcohol use or abstain altogether, support and resources are available year-round to help faculty, staff and their adult dependents manage alcohol use:
- Want help with cutting back on drinking alcohol or quitting altogether? Brief, confidential health education and one-on-one counseling is available through the Alcohol Management Program.
- The new MHealthy Portal, powered by Asset Health, includes the self-guided Path to Wellness: Substance Abuse program, focused on alcohol or other drug use. Available to benefits-eligible faculty, staff and their U-M health plan enrolled spouses/OQAs.
- Making a small change, like keeping track of your alcohol use (on an app like Saying When), setting limits, or drinking water in between alcoholic drinks, can make a big difference.
- If you’ve ever wondered if life would be better without alcohol, you might be “sober curious.” This article from Verywell Mind helps you understand what it means to be sober curious.
Coping with feelings that may contribute to alcohol misuse
Feeling stress, fear and anxiety or dealing with loss can all be reasons why someone turns to alcohol. Instead of using alcohol to cope, services and resources are available to help with how you’re feeling, including:
- Free and confidential counseling services, as well as support groups and workshops for mental and emotional wellness are always available to you through the Faculty and Staff Counseling and Consultation Office (FASCCO) and the Michigan Medicine Office of Counseling and Workplace Resilience.
- All U-M health plans cover mental and behavioral health services like counseling, therapy and substance abuse treatment.
- Feeling COVID burnout? Instead of drinking alcohol, check out these helpful tips from the CDC.