Overusing Alcohol & Cannabis During COVID-19

Being confined at home, along with the loss of our daily routines can feel like emotional dizziness to a majority of people. The physical condition of ‘Vertigo’ is defined by WebMD as “ a sensation of feeling off balance. If you have these dizzy spells, you might feel like you are spinning or that the world around you is spinning.”

For some, these times do create significant unbalance, where one’s world is spinning, feeling off balanced, out of control, and creating the emotional dizzy sensation of “Emotional Vertigo.”

The ‘emotional vertigo’ effect from the loss of daily routine, structure, boredom, stress and disconnection lead to using substances to cope. You might find yourself either drinking more frequently or earlier than usual. As life continues to feel more closed in, confined, and less connected, we all look for some means to connect. Alcohol, THC and other substances do become a connection. Rather than feeling boredom, stress, anxious or alone, the perception of the substance becomes a functional fit and connection to feel different emotions that are more pleasurable, numbing and relieving.

According to the Canadian Centre For Substance Abuse, they report “Canadians who report consuming more alcohol most often cite a lack of regular schedule, boredom and stress, and those who report consuming more cannabis most often cite the same reasons. Canadians who report consuming less alcohol most often cite a lack of social gatherings and opportunities to drink. Younger Canadians (18 to 34) are more likely than Canadians 55 plus to report their consumption of both alcohol and cannabis has increased.”

Substance use in these times can lead to future greater dependencies, of which can create new challenges in your life. If you are having difficulty coping with the emotional vertigo of COVID-19, and experiencing stress, anxiety, and find yourself using substances to cope, please refer to the following link by CCSA for information on coping without using substances and consider speaking to a professional.

Be well,

Ian

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Ian Robertson Therapy & Counselling

6150 Valley Way
Suite #108
Niagara Falls, ON
L2E 1X9

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