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Coping with Life's Struggles: Alcohol & Drug Taking

Index to articles:

Alcohol and other drugs

Drugs refer to substances that change the way the brain works and affect how a person thinks, behaves and feels. Many people have tried alcohol or other drugs for a variety of reasons. However, it is easy to underestimate the effects that they have on the body and mind.

All drugs have adverse effects and if you are considering using a drug it is important that you know how it will affect your body both in the short and long term.

As well as impacting on your health, drug and alcohol use may lead to other problems for example, relationship breakdown, violence, crime and financial strain.

A person using drugs regularly and over a period of time can result in physical and psychological dependence. Subsequently, they need to have more of the drug/alcohol to have the same effect.
Continued drug/alcohol use occurs even when there are negative consequences to one’s health, relationships, work and finances.

If you are finding that your drug/alcohol use is too frequent, or that you and others are recognising the negative effects on you, it could be helpful for you to talk to someone for example, a counsellor. Your readiness and co-operation in counselling is essential. The counsellor will work with you to attain your goals.

Detoxification is part of the process. Many lifestyle adjustments are required to maintain a drug/alcohol free existence. These changes may require social and psychological support.
Many people are affected in different ways by the drug/alcohol use of someone close to them. They go through a range of emotions, as does the person who is using. These feelings may include sadness, guilt, fear, disappointment etc.

It is important to remember that it is not possible to stop someone from using drugs/alcohol or to force them to seek treatment. This must be the decision of the person using. The person using however, must not be protected from the consequences of their drug/alcohol use. For family members it could be helpful to find support for themselves and to be better informed about drug/alcohol use.

Your family doctor may be of assistance with treatment and referral. The Greek Welfare Centre may be contacted for information and support.

Useful websites:

* radar.org.au
* consellingonline.org.au
* beyondblue.org.au
* health.nsw.gov.au
* fds.org.au
* adf.org.au

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