As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread across the world, the economic consequences have begun to be felt. Even now, many in the U.S. have lost their jobs. We’ve seen in past recessions that unemployment and economic uncertainty can impact substance abuse and addiction. Learning about the link between recession and substance abuse can help you make the right decisions about seeking treatment and reversing the damaging effects of addiction.
What is the Connection Between Economic Recession and Substance Abuse?
Many who struggle with substance abuse have experienced trauma in the past. For some, stressors like job loss and financial uncertainty can even trigger PTSD. When the loss of an income leads to the loss of a home, some use drugs or alcohol to cope. Homelessness is tied to drug use. According to the National Institute of Health, homelessness can be both a cause and a consequence of substance abuse.
Some individuals might turn to cheaper drugs during a recession while they have less purchasing power. Unfortunately, cheaper drugs such as heroin and fentanyl can also be more dangerous. This can lead to more overdoses and loss of life.
Finally, those who struggle with depression and anxiety are more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol. Conditions like an economic recession can bring about feelings of anxiety and depression. To seek comfort from these feelings, some people turn to drugs and alcohol to cope.
As we enter this uncertain time with a likely economic recession, substance abuse is likely to rise. However, staying educated about substance abuse treatment programs and signs of substance abuse can help you find or stay in recovery.
Some signs of substance abuse include the following:
- Risky behavior such as driving under the influence
- Being secretive towards family members
- Spending money on drugs and alcohol even when you can’t afford it
- Needing more of the same drug or alcohol to feel intoxicated
- Lack of energy or motivation
- Sudden changes in behavior
- Problems in relationships or job loss
- Inability to stop using drugs or alcohol
If you or your loved one is suffering from an economic recession and substance abuse, it’s important to reach out and find help. Early interventions can help you turn your life around.
Unemployment and Addiction
During a recession, it’s likely that many will struggle to find or maintain steady employment. The daily reality of unemployment can feel overwhelming and unbearable. During a recession, not only do many find themselves out of work, but there are fewer jobs available. Job loss can not only lead to financial worries, but to greater amounts of free time as well. For some, this free time can be a factor in substance abuse.
People need help not only to find a new job but to cope with anxiety and stress. And finding a job while struggling with substance abuse issues might be difficult as well. During these times, even those with steady employment might feel more stress at work or from the loss of a partner’s income.
However, even without a steady income, help for substance abuse is available. Although the coronavirus pandemic has placed restrictions around travel and gatherings, virtual therapy and telemedicine are options for support during your recovery.
Economic Recession and Substance Abuse Help
If you or someone you love is struggling with economic recession and substance abuse, there is help. Overcoming addiction alone is not just difficult, but can actually be dangerous. However, at WeRecover, we can connect you with addiction treatment centers so you can develop healthy coping skills so you can get back on your feet. If addiction has kept you from getting or keeping a job, reach out for help. While the world feels uncertain, don’t let substance abuse spiral out of control. Contact us today.