The lives of millions of people have been disrupted by the hardships caused by the
coronavirus pandemic. Some individuals have been forced to work from their homes
while others have lost employment. In some instances, individuals are struggling to
balance work and the virtual education of their children.

With the progression of the quarantine, some individuals started missing social
gatherings and the normalcy they enjoyed before the pandemic. Increased isolation and
reduced social interaction combined with the stressors of daily life make life more
challenging for many people.

For individuals that were struggling with substance abuse before the COVID-19
pandemic, the sudden life changes have made it hard to cope with addictions. What’s
has made life more challenging is the fact that these individuals can no longer attend
physical NA meetings (you can check at

More Struggles Have Made More People Turn to Substance Abuse

It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused job uncertainty and closure of
businesses. This has led to financial stressors for individuals and households. Different
stresses are often associated with an increased risk of substance abuse and mental
health issues. Mental health professionals have warned that the pandemic is having
psychological effects on many people.

Research indicates that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought anxiety and fear across
the globe. Economic stressors combined with mental health issues like depression and
anxiety that people face due to isolation can have a long-term impact. According to
mental health professionals, the stress caused by these factors increases the risk of
substance abuse.

Essentially, the COVID-19 pandemic is causing an increase in substance abuse the
same way other major financial downturns and recessions did. Early indicators show
that how people opt to drink is changing. The drinking habits and preferences of most
people have changed.

For instance, individuals that used to drink at home just to relax or deal with stress
before the pandemic are drinking more. Some individuals are now drinking more as a
way of coping with stress related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Others are using drugs to
relieve the boredom caused by social isolation. In some instances, individuals are using
substances like alcohol to cope with symptoms of mental disorders like depression and

People that were already struggling with addiction are some of the most affected by the
pandemic. That’s because some of them have difficulties attending the meetings of NA support groups due to social distance restrictions. This has left some of them bored and
lonely without people to share their struggles with.

It’s not surprising that some people increased their spending on alcohol immediately
after their governments announced restrictions at the beginning of the pandemic.
Increased alcohol stockpiling led to increased drinking.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, loneliness was the most common
personal stressor caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Women were almost two times
likely to experience loneliness as compared to men.

What’s more, some people have difficulties maintaining their lifestyle during the
pandemic. This can be attributed to the financial stressors that many households are
experiencing during the pandemic due to job loss and business closure.

What a Spike in Drug and Alcohol Use Means

Governments have implemented measures like social gatherings and movement
restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19. However, the increasing drug and
alcohol use during this pandemic shows that technology use is increasing. Today,
people are using the internet to order alcohol and have it delivered right into their

Increased drug and alcohol use during the pandemic as a way to deal with stress and
mental health issues is likely to cause more problems. For instance, when a person
develops a substance abuse disorder, they can also have a co-occurring mental health

Eventually, more people will be looking for different types of NA meetings hoping to get the required assistance to recover from addiction. Treatment facilities will have more patients seeking help with addictions. Some individuals that may have undergone
treatment before the pandemic may also have to go back to rehab. That’s because
some of them have relapsed after using addictive substances to cope with life stressors.
How to Deal with Increased Drug and Alcohol Use during the Pandemic
COVID-19 has indeed disrupted the lives of many people. It has brought about the
stress that has prompted many individuals to turn to drugs and alcohol. However, there
are ways that people can minimize the stress caused by this pandemic.
For instance, setting limits for the alcohol amount that an individual drink can help.
What’s more, spending more time with family members and limiting news and social
media exposure can also help. Individuals should avoid excessive watching of news
that can feed them with negative information during this pandemic.

Additionally, online webinars and NA meetings USA sessions can help people cope with
daily stressors. Individuals should also incorporate healthy living activities like meditation and exercise into their daily routines. For instance, walking for at least 30
minutes every day can help a person lead a healthy lifestyle.

Instead of drinking alcohol, individuals should drink more water to stay hydrated. This
can help with snacking, appetite, and other health issues. Also reading good materials
and avoiding devices like phones during dinner can help. Individuals should spend more time talking about their stresses and worries at home.

Families can also start new hobbies or go back to the old ones. Being creative and
spending more time with loved ones can help deal with the stress brought about by
COVID-19. And this can prevent relapse or the temptation to turn to drugs or alcohol to
cope with stress.

The Bottom Line

Nobody wants to develop an addiction to a drug or alcohol. However, the increasing
number of people searching for phrases like “how long do NA meetings last” indicates
that more individuals are developing this problem. If you or a person you care about has relapsed or started using drugs or alcohol due to the stress caused by the COVID-19
pandemic, all is not lost. Simply locate a virtual recovery program and treatment that
can provide the assistance you or the person you care about needs to recover.