More than 20 million Americans suffer from substance abuse disorders and many are in recovery. The holidays can be a stressful time that make it too easy to leave a sober lifestyle. Thomas Corman from Lakeside Behavioral Health joined Amy Speropoulos to talk about tips to stay in control this holiday season.

First, take inventory of your triggers or things that you know make you think about using. These are important to keep in the forefront so you can do your best to avoid them. Share these triggers with the people around you so they are aware of them as well. This is not the time to re-hash old arguments or issues. Keep the conversation light and try not to have debates about heated topics.

Second, be consistent. If you are working a program such as AA or NA, keep attending your meetings. Even if you are out of town, find a local group you can attend. If you are in therapy or seeing a professional, do not skip your appointments. Make sure you continue to stay regular with your therapist or provider.

Finally, ensure that you have accountability. Identify safe physical spaces you can go if you are feeling overwhelmed. This could mean going for a walk, driving around in your car, or just being in a different room. Stay in contact with your support person. This could be your sponsor, a friend, or family member. This person can help hold you accountable to stay sober and be available if you need to talk anything through.

Lakeside is always here to help. They have programming 7 days a week and are available for admission 24 hours/day.