If you would like advice on alcohol misuse, please contact 0300 200 2400 (adults) – Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm or 0300 123 3360 (young people) – lines open 24/7. For advice on how to cut down on alcohol please see below:
- Replace your usual alcoholic beverage with a non alcoholic alternative such as a mocktail, or another soft drink.
- Always keep a soft drink / water in your hand.
- When you get an urge to drink, distract yourself either with an activity, call someone you trust, or practice mindfulness.
- Monitor how many units of alcohol you consume and keep a record of these to keep track of your consumption and help identify when it heightens so you can control this.
- Have non drinking days and only drink every other day, with limited alcohol and slip slowly.
- Alternate each drink you have with a non-alcoholic drink. For example if at a social setting, try to have a non-alcoholic beverage for every other drink.
- Make your non-alcoholic alternatives fun and interesting, such as mixing different juices and soft drinks to create a combination you like so that you enjoy these more than alcohol
- Remember easy does it. Depending on the amount of alcohol you are drinking, it will be safer and more accomplishable for you to gradually decrease your alcohol consumption and eventually abstain from drinking altogether rather than abruptly as this can be too drastic and even dangerous
- Identify your triggers for drinking, many people find that stress, anxiety and other mental health issues are the main cause for their drinking. Try to identify your causes and seek advice on how to tackle these.
Unsure about your units?
Check your units with this unit calculator from Alcohol Change UK
For advice on drug misuse, please contact 0300 200 2400 (adults) – Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm or 0300 123 3360 (young people) – lines open 24/7. For advice on how to reduce your drug consumption please see below:
- Remain busy and build/maintain a schedule so that you have less time to use drugs.
- Keep a record of your outgoing finances so that when you are not using, you are able to visually see how much money you are saving.
- Delete all contact information of your dealer or any other known people who may tempt you into contacting them for drugs.
- Surround yourself in a safe space. Your environment matters, as this is your safe haven. Keep positive reminders around you such as photographs of loved ones, positive affirmations for yourself and achievements so that when you are thinking of using you can look around and be reminded of your worth and love.
- Keep a record of when you are using so that you can track when this heightens and then control it.
- Limit how much you are using as well as which days you use, and fit in days where you do not use at all.
- When you get an urge to use, distract yourself immediately or even pop a sweet into your mouth and eat it slowly.
- Practice mindfulness and take deep breaths.
- Keep a goal in your mind and focus on that. It also helps if you keep this goal written down in your wallet, phone case, or anywhere else on your person at all times and when you have an urge to use, look at this to remind yourself of the progress you have made and will make further.