Can the new “Lockdown light” lead to an alcohol or tobacco problem? Dr. med. In an interview, Reingard Herbst reveals what those at risk of addiction now have to pay attention to.
Since the beginning of the corona pandemic, especially during the first isolation phase in spring, experts have warned of an increase in drug consumption. In times of stress, worries and boredom, alcohol and tobacco are often used more often. Could the new partial lockdown in November have similar consequences?
Addiction expert Dr. med. Reingard Herbst, chief physician at the NESCURE private clinic on the lake, reveals in an interview with the news agency spot on news what those at risk of addiction now have to pay attention to in order not to slip into addiction again.
Many people have to spend most of the partial lockdown at home. How can we avoid alcohol and cigarette addiction caused by boredom or stress?
Dr. med. Reingard Herbst: Developing addiction also has something to do with “losing structure”. It is therefore important now to develop a daily structure, i.e. to plan the day so as not to lose focus. It also helps to set goals. For example, the goal can be to do everything necessary together so that everyone can live normally again as soon as possible. The feeling of self-efficacy is also important, which is why it makes sense to do things that give positive feedback.
One can try to see boredom as an opportunity as there is room for creativity. Creative processes could be set in motion for which one otherwise has no time. When everything is well planned, the stress that homeschooling and home office bring with them is seen as temporary and is eased when it is accepted as a challenge.
Why is there more drinking and smoking in the current situation, even though the social framework is missing?
Herbst: People sometimes have less distraction and come more to their own issues, to their loneliness, to their problems, to their futility, to their worries, to their burdens, to their challenges, to their core. This is hard to bear for some, and alcohol supposedly and temporarily helps make all the difficult parts of life easier.
Can the partial lockdown ensure that the number of addicts increases?
Herbst: In my current experience, yes. However, it also primarily affects those people who deal with the elementary issues of their own existence and are often faced with sobering facts. This also includes fears about economic survival, about the family and the experience of being a little powerless or feeling powerless in the face of a previously unknown danger.
Is the “after-work beer” already a danger if it sticks to one beer every day?
Herbst: The “after-work beer” can be a reward at the end of the day if it stays with the one beer. Not having a beer for a few days and then observing yourself is a small test to see how important this ritual is and whether it has already taken up more space than desired.
What strategies are there to ignore alcohol when you feel cravings?
Herbst: Strategies against alcohol are fundamentally easier to implement for people who are not at risk of developing an addiction than for people who have always been closer to alcohol. Distraction through movement, preferably outdoors, through hobbies that may have been buried, through conversations with people close to you, through mindfulness exercises that can be found in abundance on the Internet, through relaxation training such as yoga, through body contact (this can also be a shower) , through intense stimuli (preferably also with a chilli pepper in the mouth), would be some ideas.
Who can people turn to if they are concerned about smoking or drinking too much?
Herbst: Anyone who is afraid of ingesting too much of an addictive substance and wants advice can do so at the addiction advice centers of the city or church organizations. These also offer telephone advice centers that can be reached 24 hours a day.
This article was written by (eee / spot)
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