National Addictions Awareness Week: Tips for the Defence Team for coping with stress and anxiety when substance use is a concern during COVID-19

November 17, 2020 - Defence Stories


National Addictions Awareness Week

National Addictions Awareness Week, led by the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA), takes place from November 22 to 28, 2020. This year’s theme is Change Begins with Me which puts the focus on the efforts and actions of individuals. It’s about making a choice to play a part in reducing the stigma surrounding substance use and people who use substances and committing to one change.

According to the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA), individuals experience the following when stressed or anxious: fear or constant worry, anger or being easily irritated, difficulty sleeping, difficulty concentrating, struggling with decisions, and/or consuming alcohol, cannabis, or other substances more than usual.

Alcohol is one of the most commonly used drugs. According to the CCSA, 1 in 5 Canadians who drink alcohol have reported drinking more since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Individuals who use drugs or have a substance use disorder have also been identified as having greater risks related to COVID-19 including risk of infection for those with underlying health conditions, withdrawal risks for those who must self-isolate or quarantine related to illegal drug supply, and increased risk of overdose due to using alone.

Canada’s Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines provides support for individuals in making informed choices about alcohol consumption, while reducing the short and long-term health risks. Knowing Your Limits with Alcohol provides further information and direction for anyone who may be thinking of changing their alcohol use to a lower-risk level.

The CCSA has developed a collection of regularly updated resources regarding the impacts of COVID-19 on substance use. In addition, the CCSA also has several tips on how to cope with stress and anxiety when substance use is a concern:

Get in touch with us!

Reach out to the EAP Corporate Office, the Mental Health and Well-being Corporate Office, or the Office of Disability Management.

Subscribe to the EAP distribution list to stay informed on mental health and wellness topics that matter to you, special events, and much more!

How can I access help?

Defence Team members have access to:

DND Civilian employees have access to:

CAF Members and their families have access to:

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