Tis The Season to be Perfect
Experts at Caron Treatment Centers Warn Rising Holiday Pressure Can Fuel Substance Use and Abuse
WERNERSVILLE, PA (December 3, 2018) — Media portrays the holiday season as a happy time filled with festive foods and celebratory gatherings. However, for many, the season creates a whirlwind of pressure to send the perfect holiday card, throw the most memorable parties and give the best gifts. From client outings to family functions, pressure to perform during the holidays is wreaking havoc on our lives.
“Whether you can’t stop looking at your neighbor’s flawless Instagram to your relatives texting last minute wish lists – research shows that technology has ramped up the pressure and created unrealistic expectations of perfection,” said David Rotenberg, Caron’s Chief Clinical Officer. “Unfortunately, this is a recipe for disaster with more people turning to alcohol, marijuana, illegal drugs or abusing prescription medication to cope and relax.”
In fact, polls conducted by Caron over the past decade highlight the reality that turning to substances to blow off steam at holiday parties can have serious repercussions. In one survey, for example, alcohol was a primary factor in flirtations with co-workers or supervisors, inappropriate text messages, aggressive behavior and drunk driving. And according to Caron’s medical experts, most people retain alcohol in their blood up to three hours after one drink increasing the risk of dangerous decisions with tragic consequences.
Misperceptions about the safety of marijuana has created additional hazards. Marijuana can cause drowsiness and an inability to judge speed and distance -- a sure recipe for disaster behind the wheel. With edibles emerging as a increasingly popular form of marijuana consumption – this is not a minor issue. In fact, a person who usually smokes marijuana may not realize that the body absorbs it differently when it’s ingested. They expect to feel the high immediately and instead experience the major effects of the edible a few hours later. If they are driving when that happens, they could be severely impaired. In fact, a report from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) found that marijuana was by far the most common drug in drugged-driving fatalities, identified in 38 percent of those tested.
“Drinking, using marijuana, abusing prescription medications or taking illegal drugs to change your mood is so widely accepted that many people fail to recognize it may signal a substance use disorder,” said Rotenberg. “A staggering report released last week from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC ) showed that drug overdose deaths killed 70,000 Americans last year, a record. During the holidays, people are particularly vulnerable to substance abuse and others are more willing to look the other way – a perfect storm for increased fatalities. We want families struggling with the disease of addiction to know that they are not alone and we urge them not to delay in reaching out for support.”
Learn more from Caron experts about healthy ways to manage holiday stress, tips for supporting family and friends in early recovery during the holidays and symptoms of substance use disorders.
Caron Treatment Centers
With 60 years in the field, Caron Treatment Centers operates lifesaving addiction and behavioral healthcare treatment. Caron is headquartered in Wernersville, Pennsylvania with Ocean Drive and Caron Renaissance located in Palm Beach County, Florida. Caron has recovery centers in New England, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., which offer community and recovery support. Caron’s recovery centers in Atlanta and New York City also offer pre- and post-treatment services. Caron has the most extensive continuum of care including teens, and adults, chronic pain, executives, healthcare professionals and legal professionals. Caron’s outcomes-driven treatment care plans are customized to meet the needs of individuals and families – with highly trained teams prepared to address co-occurring disorders. Caron offers an innovative approach to ongoing recovery care support for its former patients and their families with online peer groups and other resources during the first year of transition following discharge. For more information on Caron, please visit Caron at www.caron.org or follow us on Twitter @CaronTreatment.
Corporate Director of PR & Communications, Caron
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Senior Vice President, Gregory FCA
By Maggie Tipton, Psy.D.