The ongoing stress and uncertainty brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic has led to two intersecting health crises – the battle to vaccinate and prevent the virus from spreading, and the personal and societal struggle in coping with anxiety, depression and apprehension without resorting to excessive drinking and substance abuse.
Overdoses have spiked since the onset of the pandemic. Many Americans report resorting to alcohol or have increased the quantity of alcohol and drugs they ingest as a way of coping with pandemic-related stressors. The demand for mental health services has increased but depression isn’t the only health issue people are facing. Experts say misuse of opioids and stimulants is also on the rise. What we now see, a year after living with Covid19 is a “Pandemic in a Pandemic”….
Our objective is to remind the public that there is a strong connection between the stress of the pandemic and the increase in substance abuse in our state. We want to remind people that they are not alone, and we want to share simple ideas and suggestions on what we can all do to help each other.