Addiction issues can be complex and, for someone who struggles with substance use disorder, different events can trigger substance use disorder or lead to a relapse. Isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic has affected people in many different ways – fear of infection, financial concerns, or worries with uncertainty about the future.
Being homebound for many months can be challenging, especially since loneliness is often an addiction trigger. If you are struggling with the effects of isolation during the pandemic and are experiencing signs of addiction to alcohol or another substance, your best option is to seek out treatment. Fresh Start Recovery Center can help identify if you have a substance use addiction and, if you do, provide treatment.
The Pandemic’s Effect on Mental Health
After the seriousness of the coronavirus spread was realized, many government officials quickly issued quarantine mandates with little time for people to adjust to the idea. Americans across the country were abruptly laid off, shifted to remote work, or were given shelter-in-place orders. As a result, many people have had to live in isolation for all or part of the last nine months. During quarantine, they may have felt bored, lonely, depressed, anxious, or even angry. If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Millions of adults in the United States alone will struggle with their mental health at some point in their lives.
Negative Health Effects Stemming from Addiction
Knowing COVID-19 is highly contagious, many people are worried about being infected. In response, they may turn to substance use as a coping mechanism to avoid their fears. What people often don’t realize is overindulging in substances can affect their bodies in ways that increase their risk of contracting or experiencing complications from COVID-19:
- Impacts the immune system
- Harms the respiratory system
- Changes to the pulmonary system
These types of changes in a person’s body can increase susceptibility to COVID-19 as well as create complications if they are infected. Overcoming addiction can help you stay safe from this and other diseases.
Dealing with Addiction Risk Factors During the Pandemic
The pandemic has disrupted everyday life. Substance use may start as voluntary, but repeated use can lead to addiction. Over time, substance use becomes involuntary as it affects the brain, which, in turn, increases urges to use. Eventually, dependency on the substance emerges.
Isolation is a risk factor for substance use disorder or, for someone in recovery, a relapse because these negative feelings can trigger a need to escape through substance use. In a quarantine situation where people may be combating the negative feelings associated with isolation, increased substance use can progress rapidly because people often continue using substances despite the harm they cause; they just try to get themselves through each day.
Contact Fresh Start Recovery Center Today
If you are dealing with strong cravings or an inability to stay sober, contact a treatment provider immediately. Living in isolation during the pandemic can be difficult, and your family and close friends may not realize how much you are struggling. Be sure to talk to them and let them know what is going on so they can offer their support. Or, if you suspect a loved one has a problem, seek help for them.
The pandemic has created conditions of isolation, but this doesn’t mean anyone has to struggle alone. Fresh Start Recovery Center has a range of addiction treatment program options to help get people struggling with substance use disorder on a new path. We offer a wide range of therapies that can help you begin to heal. To learn more about our patient-centered approach for addiction treatment, contact Fresh Start Recovery Center at 833.625.0398 today.