Today (October 4th) is National Vodka Day—as if we needed the holiday.
A 2018 study found that almost 61% of people ages 18-29 had drunk vodka in the past three months. In general, Americans don’t need a reminder to drink. The 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) found that almost 27% of adults reported binge drinking.
We don’t need any extra days to celebrate alcohol; our culture is obsessed with it. Go to any store that sells shirts with slogans and you’ll find plenty of jokes about using alcohol to solve one’s problems. A quick google search shows a shirt with a picture of a shot glass; the shirt says: “Drinking might not solve all your problems, but it’s worth a shot.” Yikes.
Many of us with Alcohol Use Disorder used alcohol to cope with problems in our life. In sobriety, we have to unlearn this behavior and practice healthier coping skills. This takes work, but the work is worth it. Seeing jokes like the aforementioned t-shirt can be unhelpful to those ready to put in that work.
Even the COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t slowed down alcohol sales; by May, online alcohol sales had increased by 400%. While this was because people were now buying everything—including booze—online rather than in-person, sheltering in place didn’t stop people from drinking. It may have even exacerbated it.
That same 2018 NSDUH data found that 14.4 million adults had an Alcohol Use Disorder. That number seems to only have increased since the pandemic. At Amatus, our contact center has seen a 20% increase in calls about alcohol use since COVID-19 hit the US.
Last month was National Recovery Month, an awareness campaign about the importance of support and resources for recovery and mental health. This is a celebration that TruHealing Centers can get behind. An estimated 22 million Americans are in recovery from addiction. It’s hard to find statistics for how many of those have Alcohol Use Disorder, but there are many of us.
National Recovery Month is a great way to bring awareness to an important issue, but for those of us in recovery, it’s not just one month. It’s lifelong. Today is a good opportunity to keep the spirit of last month alive and celebrate your recovery. If you aren’t sober yourself, now is as good a time as any to check in with the people in your life who are.
If you want to celebrate National Vodka Day but you’re sober, you could make a mocktail (if you are comfortable with that) using seltzer and some fruit juices. You could also celebrate the fact that you’ll never have a vodka hangover again.
If you are worried about your alcohol use, there is hope. TruHealing Centers offers high-quality treatment for addiction and mental health disorders in facilities across the country. Our staff—many of whom are in recovery themselves—will help you build the coping skills to face problems in your life sober. You will learn to thrive in long-term recovery. To learn more, call an admissions specialist at 410-593-0005.