The holidays are meant to be a time of joy, but they can also cause some people to feel stressed and unhappy. People with the “holiday blues” may want to turn to substance use as a coping mechanism. Fatigue, high expectations, and over-commitment can lead to mood swings and heightened emotions. Being away from a support network and routine can enhance feelings of isolation.
“If you know someone with addiction issues, urge them to get help by calling 211 for treatment options, or the 24-hour hotline at (440) 989-4900 for crisis issues,” said Elaine Georgas, BA, executive director at the Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services Board of Lorain County.
There are ways to prepare for this high-risk season. Naloxone (also known as Narcan®), a nasal medication that can reverse an overdose caused by an opioid drug, is available at no cost from the Lorain County General Health District (LCGHD). Narcan® kits are available weekdays (excluding holidays) between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. at the health district, 9880 S. Murray Ridge Rd., Elyria.
“The heroin epidemic is affecting people from all walks of life,” said David Covell, RS, MPH, LCGHD health commissioner. “That’s why it’s important for naloxone to be more available for parents, partners, and all other persons who want to prevent the overdose of a loved one.”