North Yorkshire’s drug and alcohol service is supporting a national campaign in Alcohol Awareness Week to help people who may have increased their drinking during the pandemic.

Mark Vidgen, Operations Director at North Yorkshire Horizons said: “The stresses and strains of lockdown and the pandemic have seen more people in England consuming more alcohol.

“Lives have been turned upside down. People have new financial worries. The people we’re seeing can feel more lonely and cut off from family and friends.”

Alcohol Awareness Week, which runs from 16th to 22nd November aims to encourage people to become aware of the health consequences of how much they are drinking. This year it has a theme of alcohol and mental health.

Mark encouraged local people who may be concerned about their alcohol consumption to get in touch. They were also now able to take an Alcohol Test to review their consumption and monitor it with a free DrinkCoach app.

The Royal College of Psychiatrists estimates that in June, more than 8.4 million people in England were drinking at higher-risk levels, up from 4.8 million in February 2020.

Mark Holmes, of DrinkCoach: “If you’re concerned about your drinking, you can monitor your drinking on our free app, reflect on it and set yourself some goals. Our website has lots of information, especially around mental health and on there you can take the Alcohol Test to get some honest feedback on your drinking, and that’s really important.”

The North Yorkshire Horizons service is joining over 3,000 other organisations across the country to raise awareness of the link between alcohol and mental health for Alcohol Awareness Week.

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