Here are some tips to reduce drinking that may have escalated during the current situation. The coronavirus has changed so much of our lifestyle in recent weeks. One are that seems to have altered for many is alcohol consumption. Some have decided that they are drinking too much and have taken steps to change that. Others, unfortunately more than the changers, have began to drink too much, too often.
In some ways it is understandable as it may relieve the boredom in lockdown. However, it can increase tensions in the family and damage health. It can also lead to dependence as alcohol is used to alter mood. If you think that you may have a problem with alcohol check out the assessment tools that will tell you if you are dependent and if this website would benefit you. If you feel that you drink too much, you can get a comparison of your drinking against others of your age and gender by going to the Smart Drinker Assessment.
If you have decided that you just want to cut down your drinking on your own, rather than join this website and abstain completely or control your drinking. There are many things you can do, that will help you cut down your drinking. Quite small changes in how and when you drink can have a large effect.
General Tips to Reduce Drinking
- Plan to have at least two alcohol free days during the week.
- Try changing your drink, if you drink shorts then dilute them with mixers to make them a long drink or, better still, drink beer or low alcohol drinks instead.
- Pace your drinks and take smaller sips. Consume no more than one drink an hour, it keeps your blood alcohol content low.
- Don’t mix your drinks, for example, beer and spirits.
- Drink for the taste, rather than for the effect.
- Have non-alcoholic drinks in between your drinks.
- Don’t hold your glass in your hand all the time put it down between drinks, it lasts longer.
Tips to Reduce Drinking At Home
- Remember that if you are drinking at home, the measures that you tend to pour for yourself are larger than you would normally get in a bar. So, it is worth buying yourself smaller glasses or a drinks measure.
- Also, if you are going to be drinking at home, it is worth buying yourself low alcohol beer or wine or even non-alcoholic drinks.
Although less relevant at the moment during lockdown, some of the tips to reduce drinking below are nevertheless useful. And, of course, lockdown won’t last forever, bars and restaurants will reopen and social lives will begin again.
Before going out
- Before you go out, set rules about the number of drinks that you’re going to have and stick to it.
- Delay having your first drink of the evening, by going out later and delay even further by having soft drinks first.
- Avoid drinking on an empty stomach, if you anticipate heavy consumption have a large meal before you go out or make sure that you eat while you drink.
Tips to Reduce Drinking on a Night Out or Party
- If you’re in the company of other drinkers imitate the speed of the slowest drinker not the fastest.
- Tell your friends that you will not buy rounds, and just buy your own drink.
- Learn to refuse a drink when offered. You don’t have to take a drink just because it is offered.
- Learn to lose unwanted drinks that are given to you. For example you can set them down and later walk away.
- Tell your friends that you are cutting down your drinking, that way, they will give you some support. Of course you may be embarrassed to say that you’re drinking too much or you’re cutting down your drinking. So you don’t have to sayyou have a drink problem, you can say that you are trying to lose weight or that you have a medical problem or some other excuse. If you don’t tell your regular drinking companions that you are trying to cut down then it will make it very difficult for you.
- Stay away from people who give you a hard time about not drinking as much as they do.
- If you’re at a party or drinking at home it is worth drinking out of cans or bottles to prevent other people topping up your glass. This way you can keep a track of how much you are drinking.
If you feel that you need, or that you want, help to address a drinking issue, you can get help at this website.
If you need help to change your drinking – click this link
If you need help because of a family member’s drinking – click this link
If you want to talk to someone or would like advice or coaching – click this link