The Link Between COVID-19 and Relapse

Isolation and Relapse

Coronavirus has turned our world upside down. It has changed almost every aspect of how we live our lives. As we continue to mitigate transmission and do what we can to keep hospitals within their capacity, many of us are working from home for the foreseeable future.

Those venturing into their places of employment are doing so with ample safety precautions that, understandably, limit person-to-person interactions. 

While these precautions are necessary, we must acknowledge that this isolation can make it easier than ever to hide addictions.

Those in recovery from substance use disorder and alcohol use disorder may be finding themselves facing new types of triggers and temptations brought on by factors related to living during coronavirus.  

The Overlooked Impact of Isolation

Isolation and social distancing can be hard on anyone, but this is especially true for those in recovery from substance use disorder and alcohol use disorder.

A study by Well Being Trust, a national public health group, estimates “as many as 75,000 more people will die from drug or alcohol misuse and suicide” due to the pandemic

According to Well Being Trust, the main factors leading to this increase are, “unprecedented economic failure paired with massive unemployment, mandated social isolation for months and possible residual isolation for years, and uncertainty caused by the sudden emergence of a novel, previously unknown microbe.

The difficulties of simply living during a pandemic are exponential.

Relapse Rates Are Going  Up

Addiction treatment centers are experiencing an increase in the number of relapses among patients. Without having to see co-workers, friends, and family face-to-face, hangovers and withdrawal symptoms are easier to hide; relapse is easier to hide. 

Social distancing and isolation also create a physical separation between those with substance or alcohol use disorder and their support person, and even their recovery resources. 

You can maintain recovery during COVID-19. If you are feeling isolated, you are not alone. Please seek help. 

Getting Treatment During COVID-19

For many, the pandemic is serving as the perfect time to address their addictions. Coleman Addiction Medicine is continuing to treat patients during COVID-19. We are taking extra precautions with our new COVID-19 Safe Care Protocol so you don’t have to delay treatment. 

Schedule a callback below if you have questions about our unique treatments for opioid and alcohol dependence. 

Deborah Reich, MD

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