Muse Treatment and Recovery Center Reports Alcohol and Drug Abuse Are on the Rise During COVID-19 Pandemic

Los Angeles, Ca. – The stress and isolation of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to a marked increase in substance abuse, recent studies have shown. Muse Treatment Center in Los Angeles warns the pandemic has removed or restricted many healthy coping mechanisms that usually help recovering addicts and alcoholics maintain their sobriety. Precautions intended to protect community health may also be contributing to many overdoses, including fatal ones.

Substance Abuse During the Pandemic was rampant. Addiction experts say COVID-19 has led to increased substance abuse for multiple reasons. The pandemic has increased susceptibility to substance abuse, addiction, and relapse, according to one report. Social distancing shut down many of the personal connections that are crucial for substance abuse recovery and good mental health in general. Many of those in recovery need real interaction with other people, which online therapy and support groups just don’t provide for them. Once they relapse, users are more likely to overdose if they’re alone – and with no one to help them when they do, death is more likely.

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Financial worries caused by job losses or reductions in work hours are adding to the emotional struggles felt by many trying to manage drug and alcohol abuse. Concerns about contracting COVID-19 also are taking an emotional toll. Many former substance abusers may relapse when they lose loved ones, especially if the deceased had been part of their support network.

Job loss doesn’t just hurt financially. Some will turn to drugs or alcohol to soothe feelings of low self-worth. Others will drink or use drugs out of boredom. Being stuck at home with little social interaction adds to the temptation to drink or use drugs just to have something to do.

Many clinics and community-based organizations decreased their services in the early days of the pandemic, either because they were receiving less financial support or due to a desire to protect workers from infection with COVID-19.

Isolation may be the biggest factor in the rise in substance abuse. Experts say even short periods of isolation can negatively impact emotional well-being, often causing anxiety, depression, and sleep disorders. Isolation adds to the struggle of dealing with those conditions, by removing most healthy means of coping with the stress.

As people have turned to drugs to cope with the stress and isolation required during the pandemic, overdoses are also on the rise.

More than 40 states have seen increases in opioid-related deaths, according to the American Medical Association (AMA), citing data from national, state, and local public health agencies, law enforcement, emergency medical services, hospitals, treatment centers, research journals, and other sources.

“The AMA is greatly concerned by an increasing number of reports from national, state, and local media suggesting increases in opioid- and other drug-related mortality — particularly from illicitly manufactured fentanyl and fentanyl analogs,” the medical association said in the report.

Another study found a 16.5% increase in overdoses, comparing March-June 2019 with the same period in 2020.

The substance abuse professionals at Muse Treatment Center in Los Angeles understand that isolation can be dangerous to someone struggling with a substance use disorder or other mental health condition. Connecting with other people is an important element of long-term recovery. Muse offers group therapy in both residential and outpatient programs. Community-based assistance like 12-Step programs are another important tool for long-term recovery.

For those who are struggling with substance abuse, contact Muse for more information on how they can help, call 800-426-1818.


For more information about Muse Treatment, contact the company here:

Muse Treatment
(800) 426-1818
1251 Westwood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90024