Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) can be alienating, so establishing a strong support system is an essential part of recovery. Being a part of an uplifting community not only provides a sense of accountability and belonging but can also boost mental health and help prevent relapse. In the digital age, connecting with support groups and other people in alcohol recovery is can easily be done virtually — and in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual support is especially important.
Addiction Recovery Support During COVID-19
With the new social regulations in place due to COVID-19, finding healthy ways to commune with friends, family, and support groups is crucial for those in addiction recovery. Social isolation can affect the brain and lead to potential issues like depression and anxiety, which may trigger substance abuse. Fortunately, modern technology has presented many options for virtual human interaction, and recovery support is possible without close physical contact. With new digital advancements like Zoom, online recovery programs, and telehealth counseling, it’s possible to connect with a support system without even leaving the house.
Even though there are online communities available to those recovering from AUD, there are still many ways a person can receive face-to-face support safely during the COVID pandemic. From socially distanced recovery meetings with accountability partners, it’s still possible to get in-person support from loved ones, mental health professionals, and the sober community during this time. By taking advantage of the available resources and receiving in-person recovery support, a person can better build their recovery network and get the help they need to stay sober.
The Positive Effects of Having a Support System in Recovery
As the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to light, loneliness can be detrimental to mental health. Unfortunately, many people suffering from addiction do so in isolation as they keep their struggle private. This is precisely why having a support system in recovery is essential; It creates a sense of solidarity and reminds the person in recovery that they aren’t alone.
Connecting with others has shown to have profound physical and mental health benefits. It not only provides a feeling of purpose and belonging, it can help lower stress, reduce the likelihood of substance use, boost motivation, improve overall mood, and encourage healthy lifestyle choices.
In addition to the health benefits a support system can offer, it can also establish accountability. The recovery process can be full of temptation, and a community of encouraging people can be the difference between staying sober and relapsing. A support system is often there to offer encouragement, motivation, and emotional support when a person in recovery needs it most — and they’re also some of the first to celebrate when important recovery milestones are met.
How Soberlink Can Help You Connect With Your Support System
Effective support systems require trust. Unfortunately, AUD can often increase lies, broken promises, and secrets regarding their alcohol use which establishes a sense of distrust between the person struggling and their loved ones. Rebuilding the bond of trust is a critical step in recovery, and Soberlink alcohol monitoring can help.
Soberlink is a comprehensive remote alcohol monitoring system that uses a professional-grade breathalyzer and wireless connectivity to automatically document and share proof of sobriety in real-time. This handheld device uses testing schedules to help individuals attain structure and remain accountable during the recovery process. Soberlink devices have tamper-detection technology and are equipped with facial recognition software to confirm the identity of the user during each test.
Using Soberlink to document sobriety is easy and customizable. Monitored Clients can modify their testing schedule to fit their needs, often testing 2-3 times a day. The intuitive system’s Advanced Reporting™ software allows clients, loved ones, and Treatment Professionals to download easy-to-digest Advanced Reporting™ that can be used for milestone tracking and accountability.
Establishing an Online Support System
Given its intrinsic digital design, Soberlink can be a useful tool when used in conjunction with treatment or online support groups. In recent years, many online resources have been developed to support those in Addiction Recovery.
- Online Intergroup of Alcoholics Anonymous is a digital platform where people in recovery can participate in online AA meetings, chat rooms, and video and telephone conferences.
- SMART Recovery offers both local meetings and online meetings for addiction recovery. With message boards, free webinars, podcasts, reading recommendations, and other helpful resources, SMART Recovery offers a plethora of digital recovery support systems.
- ASAM (American Society of Addiction Medicine) focuses on a range of addictions and the prevention, treatment, and recovery by offering several services to those struggling with addiction.
While social isolation can increase the risk of relapse, there are now many digital resources available for those struggling with AUD. Building a strong support group — whether in-person or online — allows a person to boost their mental health, find a sense of belonging, and establish accountability. With modern tools like Soberlink, smartphone apps, and other digital resources, it can be easier to rebuild trust in relationships, connect with others, and get the support required for a long-lasting recovery.