With the festive season upon us, the drinks will be flowing more than usual for some. But just round the corner is Dry January. Dry January is the annual movement through which millions of people give up alcohol for the month of January. It is run by the charity Alcohol Change UK and is an ideal opportunity to give the body and mind a break from all of that festive booze.
Why do Dry January?
Taking part in Dry January is a chance to ditch the hangover, reduce the waistline, and save some serious money by giving up alcohol for 31 days. You can read more about why doing Dry January is a good idea at www. alcoholchange.org.uk/get-involved/campaigns/dry-january/about-dry-january/what-is-dry-january
But does it work?
Yes, according to the alcohol AUDIT, 72% of people who did Dry January are still drinking less riskily six months later. Giving your body a break from booze for January is pretty good for it, but Dry January helps people cut down longer term too. Alcohol is linked with more than 60 health conditions, including liver disease, high blood pressure, depression and seven types of cancer. In fact, alcohol is the biggest risk factor for death, ill-health and disability for people aged 15-49 in the UK. Cutting back on alcohol reduces your risk of developing these conditions. You can check out the Alcohol Change website for more details.
Is there a safe drinking limit?
The UK’s top doctors (they’re called the Chief Medical Officers) recommend drinking no more than 14 units per week, spread over three or more days, and with at least two days off. The good news is that Dry January is the perfect training ground for helping you cut down from February onwards! Cutting down permanently is, for many people, very hard, because habits are hard to break. Therefore, Dry January is an excellent way of learning what your habits are and how to break them, enabling you to cut down longer-term. You can think of it as a boot camp for drinking self-control!
Where can people get support?
Grimsby’s drug and alcohol service, Addaction are running four alcohol awareness drop-in sessions in the community throughout the month of January. This is a non judgemental space giving people the opportunity to find out more about alcohol, discuss what changes you’ve made and whether you’re finding it easy or hard work giving up the booze.
It’s also a place to come and listen to someone who has battled with addiction and lost everything he had in life due to alcohol. Learn how he came back from an induced coma and is now over 4 years sober.
Most of us have been touched by addiction in one way or another. If you are concerned about a family member or friend’s drinking habits then come along and talk to us to find out what support is available. Drop in sessions will take place on:
- Tuesday 7th January at St.Peters Church Hall, St.Peters Avenue, Cleethorpes from 11 till 12 noon.
- Monday 13th January at The Roxton Practise, Pelham Road, Immingham from 11 till 12 noon.
- Tuesday 21st January at the Neighbourhood centre, Wellington Street, Grimsby from 1 till 2pm
- Tuesday 28th January at Scartho community centre, Scartho, Grimsby from 11till 12 noon
Alternatively, if you would like Addaction to come to your workplace and give an informal talk about alcohol then please email firstname.lastname@example.org
In the meantime if you are worried or concerned about your or someone else’s drinking, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Addaction on 01472 806890 or via their webchat where you can talk anonymously to a trained advisor - www.addaction.org.uk.