Monday, April 6, 2020

Gateway Foundation: April is Alcohol Awareness Month

April is Alcohol Awareness Month
With warmer weather fast approaching April is associated with the beginning of spring and new beginnings. This month we are all in an unprecedented situation and one that requires us to work together to keep the focus on our mission ? treating people with substance use disorder. 

April is also designated as Alcohol Awareness Month. Unlike many other substances, alcohol has less of a taboo around it, and has become a staple in many social situations. Alcohol?s prevalence is not questioned today as our society glamorizes alcohol through media, pop-culture, company happy hours, etc. The acceptance of this substance can mask who has an alcohol use disorder (AUD). 

During our new reality, many are turning to ?virtual happy hours? and alcohol can be an easy escape for those abiding to ?stay-at-home? order. This is concerning and something we should be keenly aware of as we spend time with our loved ones and support each other.

The effects of alcohol and the development of AUD are not regarded as being as harmful as other substances. In fact, at Gateway Foundation, we see over 30,000 people annually suffering from various substance use disorders each year. What is the most common disorder we see you may ask? You guessed it?Alcohol Use Disorder. 
The Statistics Related to AUD Are Shocking and Should Not Be Ignored
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Social Distancing Does Not Mean Social Isolation
One of our biggest worries at Gateway Foundation is the potential negative impact of social distancing to those who struggle with substance use disorders. Addiction is a disease of isolation and with people spending more time at home, alcohol can be an easy escape for many. I have said it before in previous emails, but I feel it is necessary to scream it to the world?social distancing does not mean social isolation.
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We Are a Resource For You and Your Clients Needing Help
As we partner together, please know that we are able to complete assessments and screenings over the phone and virtually, as well as provide treatment ? both in our residential locations and through our virtual outpatient programs. Our specialty program for AUD at Aurora is currently accepting clients if there are individuals who would benefit from its specialty focus. 

This year?s alcohol awareness month is more important than ever to recognize. Let us join together this month to bring our services into people?s homes, such as our online self-assessment which can help you and your loved ones take charge of your life and future. We encourage you to share our resources with someone you know that may need the education and awareness. Gateway Foundation is here for you now and going forward.  Let?s unite now so we can be stronger in the future.

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