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Wellness Wednesday: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan on the Impact of Alcohol on Mental Health

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This last year has been a lot for all of us to handle.
We have all found different ways to handle our stress and cope with anxiety.

Many have turned to alcohol.

In fact, 16% of adults say they’re drinking more during the pandemic. Many people use alcohol to deal with stress because it temporarily boosts feel-good chemicals. But it is not always helpfun as heavy drinking can increase anxiety and alcohol is a depressant.

wants people to understand the impact of alcohol on mental health.

If you are concerned about your mental health and alcohol use, what can should you do?

  •  Identify problematic habits
    • Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is a treatable, chronic disease.
    • Review criteria for AUD diagnosis to see if alcohol has become a bigger problem.
  • Finding healthy ways to cope with stress
    • Address the root cause of chronic stress by seeking help from a mental health professional.
    • Try healthy ways to unwind:
      • Exercise
      • Hobbies such as art, crafts, music or reading
      • Meditation
      • Talking to a friend, partner or loved one
  •  How to get help
    • Talking to a primary care physician is a good first step in assessing whether alcohol consumption is problematic and for referrals to additional treatment, if necessary.
    • Call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s national helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

To learn more about mental health with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, .