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Tips for staying sober on New Years

New Year’s Eve celebrations can be synonymous with alcohol-fueled excess, or at least a champagne toast. But for those struggling with alcoholism, it’s a high-risk situation.

Bradford Health Services Addiction Treatment administrator Timothy Robinson and community representative Amanda Lewis suggest techniques for staying sober and socially comfortable at a party where alcohol is served.

HOW TO MAINTAIN SOBRIETY:

– If you haven’t told the host or friends, bring an in-the-know friend for support.

– Drive yourself. If you get uncomfortable or don’t think you’ll be able to withstand temptation, you can make an exit without asking someone else to take you home.

– Keep your nonalcoholic drink in your hand at all times. This will avoid an alcoholic top-off by an unknowing host.

– Don’t be self-conscious. “People don’t care whether or not you’re drinking,” Mr. Robinson said.

– Fake it. If you are concerned about social anxiety, camouflage with a piece of fruit on the side of your nonalcoholic beverage.

– Ready some excuses. If someone asks why you’re not drinking, think of your response in advance. You might say that you’re the designated driver or that you’re having health problems.

HOW TO AVOID EXCESS:

People often use the holidays as an excuse for substance abuse, Ms. Lewis said. Here are ways to avoid abuse if you do decide to imbibe tonight:

– Make sure you eat beforehand.

– Pace yourself. If you want to monitor yourself closely, you can even buy a breathalyzer. Remember that alcohol affects women more than men, and carbonated beverages can speed up alcohol absorption slightly.

– Black coffee and cold showers don’t work. Your liver will process an average of one ounce of alcohol per hour, and there’s no way to speed up the process.

source:  augustachronicle.com

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