Drug Rehabilitation Blog

Holidays and Addiction: Who Suffers Most?


Holidays are often a dangerous time for substance abusers and their families. Holidays and addiction do not make a good combination, especially holidays that remind people of better times in the past and lost loved ones. The holidays can be very depressing for many individuals. For those who are in recovery, the stress of the holiday season can lead to relapse. For those who have not yet tried to stop their substance abuse, the holidays can cause them to overindulge at times, leading to overdose or death.

Substance abuse also impacts innocent lives. For example, an analysis of all official U.S. death certificates between 1979-2004 by researchers revealed a spike on New Year’s Day in the number of deaths from SIDS by alcohol-consuming mothers compared to non-alcohol consuming mothers. This may be due to a rise in caregivers’ alcohol consumption during holidays. Other studies show that 44% of women and 34% of men suffer from substance abuse issues, but help is available for both the drinker who wants to stop drinking and the family who wants out of the cycle.

Holidays and Addiction with Suicide Rates

Studies show that suicide rates do not rise significantly during the holidays due to more emotional support;  however, when holidays end, the reasons people drank or used drugs still exist. No matter where you fit in the life of an alcoholic or drug addict, what to do now is get the right help for you. Unfortunately, only about one-third of people facing mental health issues actually seek treatment. Most of them are in need of inpatient treatment that addresses co-occurring health issues that may be wearing out the body and mind.

Health problems like liver or kidney damage, diabetes, mental health issues, severe malnutrition, simultaneous, multiple substance use, or a combination coupled with toxic amounts of drugs or alcohol wage heavy tolls on a body’s ability to continue tolerating heavy consumption. Left untreated, worsening bouts of accompanying guilt, shame, and hopelessness continue bearing down already weathered roads in the body and mind leading to despair, delusion, and tragic, untimely death. After holidays is a crucial time to get help to recover permanently from addiction.The habits you’ve been in for years will take time to change, but you can do it with the right help.

Benefits of Inpatient Treatment Centers

Trained, experienced professionals at inpatient treatment centers team up to help you detox safely and recover. With other clients also receiving the help they need, you can take the next steps into your drug-free lifestyle. You will learn and practice new ways of thinking and acting on life that can help you stay in your lane on the road of recovery. You no longer have to live with addictive substances controlling your mind, body, and daily life.

If you can’t imagine putting down the drug or alcohol and feeling joy again, think about the benefits of entering an inpatient treatment center as a lifestyle investment. Maybe you’re thinking:

I might lose my job. Most health insurance plans cover inpatient treatment. Many companies offer confidential employee assistance getting help with addiction. Your employer doesn’t need to know the reason for your medical leave of absence. If you work for a small business, your employer likely is aware of your overuse of addictive substances and may be relieved that you’re willing to get help you need. New opportunities open with living sober.

I’ll miss my family and friends. Initially, you will spend some time without contact between friends and family. This gives you a refuge from the distractions and triggers of living sober. It gives them time to get the help they need too and focus on changing their own unhealthy habits of living with your addiction. You and your loved ones deserve time and space needed to begin healing and make changes.

It’ll be lonesome there. Probably you already feel lonesome in the isolation of your addiction. In recovery as they practice new tools of sober living, clients often form lasting friendships that become a safety network against temptations to “use” again that inevitably come.

It won’t work. It can work once you know what to do instead of taking that next drink. You may be unable to fathom what to do instead of drink now. Working with an expert team of professionals who specialize in your particular type of case affords you space to discover tools that work best for you and together design a plan for living sober that fits your new lifestyle. You’ll have support from people who know first-hand what you’re going through and can help you do what seems hard to do as you get the hang of it.

How do I know things will be different afterward? The beauty of completing inpatient treatment is that you will be different. Able to reason and think clearly with new perspectives, you will make and follow through with choices that keep you living the recovery lifestyle you want. Some things may remain unchanged, but you will be healthier and better able to make decisions addressing them.

Another Crucial Benefit of Inpatient Treatment to Consider

Addressing the physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of addiction for you and your family, in that order, is the goal of a tailored treatment plan. Completing your program equips you and your family to live lives free from the pain and consequences of active substance abuse.

Have a safe and happy holiday!


  1. http://news.nationalpost.com/2010/12/20/christmas-the-deadliest-day-of-the-year-study/
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3998158/
  3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3052346/
  4. http://www.texashospitalityassociation.com/2012/holiday-p-a-s-s-campaign/


  • Diane C

    I have heard that people tend to get depressed over the Holidays. I have never experienced this myself but I have always had family, friends around and have not had to try and cope with life all by myself. Learning how this is a problem is good information. I can see where if someone is experiencing problems, then the Holidays come around and friends and family are there and there are things to do and people to see, etc it can take your mind off the problems. Then the Holidays end and you’re on your own again with the same problems to bring you down. Getting in-patient help for this would be very beneficial as you are not alone. There are people there to help you.

  • Amanda

    I had no idea that woman had a higher addiction rate then men. I mean 10 % more! The holidays can be stressful, but the holidays can also be nice because you have more family around to be supportive and help you through a tough time. I think that inpatient though is the best idea for anyone addressing addiction. Being able to remove your self from the life situation that you are in and having a support system be able to keep you on track it is , I believe, the most important thing. I love the Best Drug Rehabilitation offers that program and gives each individual the help that they need!

  • Walter

    I agree that it is a stressful time to be around everyone and especially if you are struggling with an addiction. I had no idea that women were more susceptible to that than men were. It also has a factor of being possibly alone and feeling like you are missing out. Aside from the obvious threat of bingig during the holidays because of the usual “everyone drinks/uses during the holidays.” I have seen this be true data, and I would also recommend if there is someone that you know that is struggling with addiction that you help them by getting them into an inpatient rehab facility. It can be a scary thought going to rehab, but I think that the enduring of the hardship that can lead them to being clean and making it in life.

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