|Anxiety and worry about the pandemic have caused many people to turn to substances as coping mechanisms. PTSD-sufferers have increased substance use during Covid-19. Working from home and distancing policies create loneliness and depression for most of us.
This is nothing new—Higher substance use has correlated with large-scale crises in the past.
It’s more important than ever to be sure we’re using alcohol, tobacco, and other legal drugs safely and avoiding illegal use. For alcohol, the question to ask is: “Why am I drinking?” Research suggests that those who begin or increase alcohol use for emotional relief are more likely to develop a substance use disorder (SUD). This was also true of cannabis.
People with SUD are often more susceptible to Covid-19 and its symptoms. Additionally, those who initiated substance use during the pandemic are at a higher risk than those who were already using before.
The scientists who studied Covid-19 and substance use describe the necessity of prevention, especially now.