Thirty-one days in January, no alcohol – 4.2 million people in the UK are taking on Dry January 2019. That’s 1 in 10 drinkers in Britain, who have kicked off the New Year alcohol-free.
Alcohol Change UK say that Dry January is about taking a month off drinking, to have a break from alcohol and create some healthier habits. Many participants do achieve positive and lasting changes.
If you’re one of the millions who have signed up to Dry January, how is it going? Are you already feeling the benefits of going alcohol-free this January? Or are you facing tougher challenges than you expected?
The Benefits of Dry January
According to research from the University of Sussex, drinkers who participated in Dry January 2018 were still drinking less alcohol in August. Their drinking days fell from 4.3 to 3.3 per week. The units consumed each day fell from 8.6 to 7.1 on average. Dry January participants said they got drunk less after the challenge too.
The Sussex University study was conducted with 800 participants of Dry January 2018. They found that 88% saved money, 67% had more energy, and 58% lost weight, amongst other findings.
There were also positive outcomes regarding people’s relationship with alcohol. 80% said they felt more in control of their drinking. 71% realised they didn’t need to have a drink to enjoy themselves.
These are all excellent, life-enhancing outcomes. Congratulations to all who made changes with alcohol through Dry January 2018. Good luck to everyone participating in 2019.
Аre You Struggling with Dry January 2019?
If you’ve signed up to Dry January 2019, is it proving to be a difficult or painful challenge? Are you shocked by how much you think about or rely on alcohol?
If you’re used to drinking every evening after work, how have you felt without alcohol so far? Are you more relaxed? Is your sleep better? Or do you feel anxious, angry or low? It might come as a shock, how you feel and act without alcohol. You might be experiencing stronger emotions than usual, which come on very suddenly and feel uncontrollable. You might find yourself thinking about past events, which you haven’t thought about for years.
Have you put down alcohol but you’re reaching for sugar instead? Is it hard to control how much you eat when you’re not drinking alcohol? If you’re dependent on alcohol, cross-addiction from alcohol to sugar is very common when you stop – especially as a source of comfort or a way to deal with strong emotions. Equally, you might have thrown yourself into work or exercise to overcome cravings for alcohol – is that beneficial for you? Or are you pushing yourself too hard in another direction?
Perhaps you have found it impossible to go without a drink in Dry January. You’ve already had a drink because it felt awful without alcohol. Was that a shock to discover? Are you talking to anyone about that?
You might also be one of 600,000 people in Britain who need alcohol addiction treatment. Maybe Dry January was your attempt at starting again. Perhaps you experienced withdrawal symptoms by stopping too quickly – daily, and heavy drinkers should always seek medical advice before stopping alcohol suddenly. Have you returned to drinking at the same level you were before attempting Dry January? Do you still want a way out of destructive drinking?
If you’re addicted to alcohol – psychologically or physically (or both) – Dry January may prove too difficult or risky for you. If that’s the case, please don’t feel you’ve failed. There is hope for alcohol-dependent people and their families too. Addiction Helper advise people every day about a wide range of alcohol treatment options in the UK and abroad. You can recover from alcohol addiction when you have the right support in place for you.
Phone, email, message or connect online with Addiction Helper today for alcohol addiction help.