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Where to Find Help for Mental Health Issues Related to Alcohol Use
Alcohol and Mental Health

Where to Find Help for Mental Health Issues Related to Alcohol Use

Published:
July 5, 2024
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7 min read
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Reframe Content Team
A team of researchers and psychologists who specialize in behavioral health and neuroscience. This group collaborates to produce insightful and evidence-based content.
July 5, 2024
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Certified recovery coach specialized in helping everyone redefine their relationship with alcohol. His approach in coaching focuses on habit formation and addressing the stress in our lives.
July 5, 2024
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Recognized by Fortune and Fast Company as a top innovator shaping the future of health and known for his pivotal role in helping individuals change their relationship with alcohol.
July 5, 2024
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7 min read
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Reframe Content Team
July 5, 2024
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7 min read

Alcohol consumption, when done in excess, can significantly impact mental health, leading to conditions like depression, anxiety, and even severe mental illnesses. Recognizing the interplay between alcohol and mental health is crucial in seeking appropriate help and support. This article explores various resources and strategies to assist those grappling with mental health issues related to alcohol use.

Understanding the Impact of Alcohol on Mental Health

Where to Find Help for Mental Health Issues Related to Alcohol Use

Alcohol is a depressant that disrupts the brain's delicate balance of neurotransmitters, which affect our feelings, thoughts, and behavior. While it might produce short-term feelings of happiness or relaxation, the long-term effects are often negative. Heavy drinking can lead to increased stress, anxiety, and depression.

According to research, heavy drinkers are more likely to develop mental health problems, and individuals with severe mental illnesses are also more likely to have substance abuse issues. This bidirectional relationship means that addressing both alcohol use and mental health simultaneously is essential for effective treatment.

For more detailed insights into how alcohol can worsen mental health, you can refer to the article How Alcohol Worsens Your Mental Health.

Recognizing When to Seek Help

The first step in seeking help is recognizing that you might have a problem. Here are some signs that alcohol might be negatively impacting your mental health:

  • Using alcohol to cope with stress or difficult emotions.
  • Drinking more than you intended or feeling unable to control your drinking.
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when not drinking.
  • Neglecting responsibilities at work, school, or home due to drinking.
  • Continuing to drink despite knowing it’s causing problems in your life.

If you notice these signs, it’s crucial to take action. The earlier you seek help, the better your chances of recovery.

Where to Find Help

1. Therapists and Counselors

Therapists and counselors can provide professional support to help you understand the underlying causes of your alcohol use and develop healthier coping mechanisms. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is particularly effective in treating alcohol use disorders and co-occurring mental health issues.

2. Support Groups

Support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) offer a community of individuals who share similar experiences. These groups provide a supportive environment where you can share your struggles and successes, which can be incredibly therapeutic.

3. Rehabilitation Centers

For those with severe alcohol dependence, rehabilitation centers offer comprehensive treatment programs that include medical detoxification, therapy, and support to help you achieve and maintain sobriety.

4. Online Resources and Apps

There are numerous online resources and mobile apps designed to help you manage your drinking and improve your mental health. The Reframe App, for example, offers a science-backed program to help individuals cut back on drinking and adopt healthier lifestyle habits. It provides daily readings, activities, and a supportive community to help you on your journey. Learn more about how Reframe can help you rethink your drinking habits.

5. Medical Professionals

Consulting with a medical professional, such as a primary care doctor or a psychiatrist, can be an essential step. They can assess your physical and mental health, provide medication if necessary, and refer you to specialized treatment services.

Steps to Take Right Now

Evaluate Your Drinking

Take a moment to reflect on your drinking habits. Ask yourself why you drink and how it makes you feel. This self-awareness is the first step toward change.

Try a Period of Abstinence

Consider going a week or more without alcohol to see how it affects your mental and physical health. You might find that you sleep better, have more energy, and feel less anxious.

Develop Healthier Coping Mechanisms

Explore healthier ways to cope with stress and negative emotions. This could include exercise, meditation, journaling, or engaging in hobbies that you enjoy.

Build a Support Network

Surround yourself with supportive friends and family who understand your goals and can provide encouragement. Consider joining online forums or local support groups to connect with others who are on a similar journey.

Set Realistic Goals

Set achievable goals for reducing your alcohol consumption. This could mean limiting the number of drinks you have per week or designating alcohol-free days.

Conclusion

Addressing mental health issues related to alcohol use is a multifaceted process that requires self-awareness, support, and professional help. By recognizing the signs of problematic drinking and taking proactive steps to seek help, you can improve your mental health and overall well-being.

For more information on how alcohol affects your health and tips for responsible drinking, check out the article How Does Alcohol Affect Your Health?.

Moderate Your Drinking Effectively

Although it isn’t a treatment for alcohol use disorder (AUD), the Reframe app can help you cut back on drinking gradually with the science-backed knowledge to empower you 100% of the way. Our proven program has helped millions of people around the world drink less and live more. And we want to help you get there, too!

The Reframe app equips you with the knowledge and skills you need to not only survive drinking less, but to thrive while you navigate the journey. Our daily research-backed readings teach you the neuroscience of alcohol, and our in-app Toolkit provides the resources and activities you need to navigate each challenge.

You’ll meet millions of fellow Reframers in our 24/7 Forum chat and daily Zoom check-in meetings. Receive encouragement from people worldwide who know exactly what you’re going through! You’ll also have the opportunity to connect with our licensed Reframe coaches for more personalized guidance.

Plus, we’re always introducing new features to optimize your in-app experience. We recently launched our in-app chatbot, Melody, powered by the world’s most powerful AI technology. Melody is here to help as you adjust to a life with less (or no) alcohol. 

And that’s not all! Every month, we launch fun challenges, like Dry/Damp January, Mental Health May, and Outdoorsy June. You won’t want to miss out on the chance to participate alongside fellow Reframers (or solo if that’s more your thing!).

The Reframe app is free for 7 days, so you don’t have anything to lose by trying it. Are you ready to feel empowered and discover life beyond alcohol? Then download our app through the App Store or Google Play today!

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At Reframe, we do science, not stigma. We base our articles on the latest peer-reviewed research in psychology, neuroscience, and behavioral science. We follow the Reframe Content Creation Guidelines, to ensure that we share accurate and actionable information with our readers. This aids them in making informed decisions on their wellness journey.
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