COVID-19/Coronavirus and Drug and Alcohol Rehab (added April 30, 2020)
COVID-19 has caused unprecedented changes in the way that we live our lives. It has stopped a tremendous amount of personal and economic activity, at least in the short term. However, COVID-19, also known as coronavirus, has not put a stop to addiction, nor has it put an end to the need for drug and alcohol rehab.
How Has COVID-19/Coronavirus Impacted Addiction?
COVID-19/Coronavirus has impacted many aspects of addiction. For example, because of enforced social distancing guidelines and curfews, it is very difficult for many to acquire drugs. Similarly, the closing of bars and restaurants has limited the opportunities for many to drink socially, although alcohol is still available in most places.
Although COVID-19/Coronavirus may have put some obstacles in the way of acquiring a substance, it has not treated the underlying causes behind substance use, nor has it put an end to substance abuse. In fact, these obstacles may even add to the desperation of an addict who is unable to acquire their substance of choice.
For many, COVID-19/Coronavirus has added to the underlying mental and emotional issues that underlie their addiction. For example, stress, loneliness, depression, boredom, isolation, and more are becoming issues for many as a result of the impacts of COVID-19, all of which often are closely linked with substance abuse. COVID-19 and its fallout may trigger many to drink or use.
How Has Addiction Impacted COVID-19/Coronavirus?
Addiction has a significant impact on the spread of COVID-19, as well as its progression. When individuals abuse substances, especially alcohol, their decision-making and judgement are often impaired, as is their ability to properly gauge risk. For this reason, they may not follow social distancing guidelines and contribute to the spread of the virus.
Men, especially in countries like Italy and China, have a significantly higher rates of hospitalization and fatality than women. However, it appears that men and women are infected at roughly equal rates. It has been widely theorized that one of the primary factors at play is that men demonstrate significantly higher rates of smoking than women in these countries.
It is believed that the long-term long and respiratory damage caused by smoking weakens them and leaves them especially vulnerable to COVID-19/Coronavirus. It is unclear whether this applies to other smoked drugs such as Crack Cocaine, Marijuana, and Meth, but it is very likely.
Additionally, intravenous drug use, such as shooting Heroin or other opioids, is known to dramatically increase the risk of heart and other pulmonary infections, which also make an individual more susceptible to the worst consequences of COVID-19-Coronavirus.
Is Drug or Alcohol Rehab Still Open?
Yes, rehab is still open because rehab for drug and alcohol addiction is an essential service, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. For many people, the risks of alcohol poisoning or a drug overdose are more dangerous and urgent than the risk of coronavirus, so rehab cannot stop. Like the medical professionals in America’s clinics and hospitals, the treatment specialists who work in rehab centers are dedicated to helping the community during these uncertain times. Across the country, rehab centers remain ready and available to provide high-quality treatment to anyone who endeavors to overcome substance abuse.
Is It Still Safe to Go to Drug or Alcohol Rehab Despite COVID-19/Coronavirus?
Yes, rehab is still safe. Right now, rehab centers are taking preventive measures to ensure that their facilities remain coronavirus-free. More specifically, rehab centers are regularly testing patients and potential patients for COVID-19, adapting their programs to comply with social-distancing guidelines, and making sure that their facilities have adequate supplies of hand sanitizer at all times.
Should I Still Go to Drug or Alcohol Rehab Despite COVID-19/Coronavirus?
You might feel that now is the time to stay home and worry about your addiction later, but today is always the best day to start recovery. In fact, isolation and loneliness may worsen your substance abuse. If you’re already stuck at home, why not take this pandemic as an opportunity to improve yourself and get better? After all, before the pandemic started, you may not have been able to take time off from your job, classes, or social life to get treatment, but now you can.
Find drug and alcohol rehab resources during COVID-19/Coronavirus at addictioncenter.com/covid-19/.
AddictionCenter.com is a referral service that provides information about addiction treatment practitioners and facilities. AddictionCenter.com is not a medical provider or treatment facility and does not provide medical advice. AddictionCenter.com does not endorse any treatment facility or guarantee the quality of care provided, or the results to be achieved, by any treatment facility. The information provided by AddictionCenter.com is not a substitute for professional treatment advice.
Faces & Voices of Recovery
Faces & Voices of Recovery is dedicated to organizing and mobilizing the over 23 million Americans in recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs, their families, friends and allies into recovery community organizations and networks.
GPB: What You Need To Know: Dealing with Substance Abuse While Self Isolating
(From the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse, gasubstanceabuse.org.)
Georgia Public Broadcasting’s new series What You Need To Know: Coronavirus provides succinct, fact-based information to help you get through the coronavirus pandemic with your health and sanity intact.
Jeff Breedlove, chief of communications and policy at the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse, speaks with Virginia Prescott about the ways to stay in touch with those in substance abuse recovery during the coronavirus shelter-in-place orders.
Watch the interview and read the full story here: https://wjsp.drupal.publicbroadcasting.net/post/what-you-need-know-dealing-substance-abuse-while-self-isolating.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA) is the primary funder of substance abuse prevention services in Georgia. SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) delivers prevention services through a comprehensive, multi-strategic prevention approach by:
- Providing national leadership in the development of policies, programs, and services to prevent the onset of illegal drug use, prescription drug misuse and abuse, alcohol misuse and abuse, and underage alcohol and tobacco use and
- Promoting effective substance abuse prevention practices that enable states, communities, and other organizations to apply prevention knowledge effectively.
SAMHSA’s National Helpline – 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.
What are the hours of operation?
The service is open 24/7, 365 days a year.
Do I need health insurance to receive this service?
The referral service is free of charge. If you have no insurance or are underinsured, we will refer you to your state office, which is responsible for state-funded treatment programs. In addition, we can often refer you to facilities that charge on a sliding fee scale or accept Medicare or Medicaid. If you have health insurance, you are encouraged to contact your insurer for a list of participating health care providers and facilities.
Will my information be kept confidential?
The service is confidential. We will not ask you for any personal information. We may ask for your zip code or other pertinent geographic information in order to track calls being routed to other offices or to accurately identify the local resources appropriate to your needs.
Do you provide counseling?
No, we do not provide counseling. Trained information specialists answer calls, transfer callers to state services or other appropriate intake centers in their states, and connect them with local assistance and support.
- What Is Substance Abuse Treatment? A Booklet for Families
Created for family members of people with alcohol abuse or drug abuse problems. Answers questions about substance abuse, its symptoms, different types of treatment, and recovery. Addresses concerns of children of parents with substance use/abuse problems.
- Alcohol and Drug Addiction Happens in the Best of Families
Describes how alcohol and drug addiction affect the whole family. Explains how substance abuse treatment works, how family interventions can be a first step to recovery, and how to help children in families affected by alcohol abuse and drug abuse.
- It’s Not Your Fault (NACoA) (PDF | 12 KB)
Assures teens with parents who abuse alcohol or drugs that, "It’s not your fault!" and that they are not alone. Encourages teens to seek emotional support from other adults, school counselors, and youth support groups such as Alateen, and provides a resource list.
- It Feels So Bad: It Doesn’t Have To
Provides information about alcohol and drug addiction to children whose parents or friends’ parents might have substance abuse problems. Advises kids to take care of themselves by communicating about the problem and joining support groups such as Alateen.
- After an Attempt: A Guide for Taking Care of Your Family Member After Treatment in the Emergency Department
Aids family members in coping with the aftermath of a relative’s suicide attempt. Describes the emergency department treatment process, lists questions to ask about follow-up treatment, and describes how to reduce risk and ensure safety at home.
- Family Therapy Can Help: For People in Recovery From Mental Illness or Addiction
Explores the role of family therapy in recovery from mental illness or substance abuse. Explains how family therapy sessions are run and who conducts them, describes a typical session, and provides information on its effectiveness in recovery.