If you are struggling with substance use and thinking about getting help, don’t let the holiday season delay your treatment. Even though it might seem selfish or wrong to skip out on all of the family activities in December so you can focus on yourself, it isn’t. In fact, we could argue that getting yourself into treatment during the holidays might be the best gift you could give your family. We’ll explore that in more detail, along with four other reasons to enter addiction treatment over the holidays. Share Now
1. Your Recovery is a Gift to Yourself and to Your Loved Ones
Holidays can be high-pressure times: buying and wrapping gifts, contributing to holiday meals, cleaning, having children around all day when school closes for the holiday, and more. These financial and familial pressures add to the stress you’re probably already feeling when you can’t control your substance use. Of course, stress leads to more substance use, creating a vicious cycle that will make it very difficult for you to truly be there for your family and friends in any reliable or meaningful way.
So rather than delay treatment because you don’t want to disappoint family members who might want you around for the holidays, think of it this way: your family members might very well be relieved to have you in a safe place where they don’t have to wonder if you’ll follow through on your promises or even survive each day. When you enter recovery, you’re giving yourself and your family permission to stop worrying about you for a little while.
2. Insurance-wise, Addiction Treatment in December is a Win
If you plan to use insurance coverage to help pay for treatment, starting a program at the end of the year might be more cost-effective. By this point, you might have already paid the yearly deductible and be able to get full coverage for your treatment program. If you aren’t sure what your insurance will cover, we can help you verify coverage and communicate with your insurance company.
3. You’ll Be Protected from Excess Substance Use During the Holidays
Remember all of the holiday stress we talked about in number 1 above? That stress might lead you to increase your substance use during December, putting you at risk for an overdose or other health complications. Stress isn’t the only factor involved: mental health disorders may intensify during the holiday as well. If you struggle with depression, for example, you might find that the holidays send you into a deeper spiral of hopelessness and lethargy.
According to NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), “64% of people with mental illness report holidays make their conditions worse.” What some call the “holiday blues” are brought on by high expectations, stress, and loneliness. Add substance use disorder to the mix, and you have a potentially dangerous situation.
When you enter treatment, you’ll be protected from your desire to “self-medicate” mental health symptoms with excess substance use. You may also discover, with the help of our professional therapists, that you have an undiagnosed mental health disorder. Co-occurring disorders are quite common in those who struggle with addiction, and your St. Gregory team will help you address both mental health and addiction simultaneously.
Want to feel safe and comfortable during the holidays, maybe for the first time in a long time? Enter treatment today.
4. You Can Celebrate the Holiday at Your Treatment Facility
If you’re in treatment over the holidays, you can trust that St. Gregory Recovery Center will help you celebrate. We offer special holiday programming and meals that help our residents connect with each other and with their unique holiday traditions. You’ll learn how much more meaningful it can be to experience the holidays when you’re sober. You may even discover a new tradition that you can take home to share with your family.
Speaking of family, your family will be able to visit with you during your stay, and our family program will help teach your loved ones about addiction. Together, you’ll learn how to communicate with each other, set firm and loving boundaries, and support each other emotionally. Over time, you’ll rebuild trust and restore relationships that may have been damaged by addiction.
5. You’ll Start the New Year with Sobriety and Hope
There’s no better gift to give yourself and your family than your health and sobriety. Coming out of treatment in time for the new year will motivate you to stay on track. You’ll leave treatment with an aftercare plan that includes a steady commitment to your recovery. This may include recovery support meetings in your community, weekly therapy appointments, outpatient therapy, involvement with St. Gregory alumni, and self-care strategies to keep your body and mind clear and healthy.
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Imagine yourself this time next year, or two, five, ten years from now. Will you look back on the holidays of 2023 with regret that you missed the festivities because you were in treatment? No way. It’s much more likely that you’ll look back on this holiday as the time when you made the best decision in your life.