Treatment Center Offers Tips for an Alcohol-Free Holiday Celebration
The July 4th weekend fast approaches. Barbecues, fireworks, and family fun dot the nation as Americans celebrate Independence Day. Unfortunately, festivities frequently take a dangerous turn. Drunk driving makes the July 4th holiday one of the deadliest days of the year. This holiday weekend, Mountainside treatment center encourages safe and sober celebrations nationwide.
For those in recovery, the heavy drinking at the core of the festivities can make holidays difficult to navigate. This is especially true for the July 4th holiday, which can lead to risky behavior – even for people without identified addictions. During the July 4th period in 2012 (6 p.m. on July 3 to 5:59 a.m. on July 5), there were 179 people killed in crashes, and 44 percent of those crashes were alcohol-impaired. NHTSA data also reveals that 46 percent of young (age 18-34) drivers were drunk while driving in fatal crashes over the July 4th period in 2012(6 p.m. on July 3 to 5:59 a.m. on July 5).
Mountainside suggests the following for a safe and sober Fourth of July:
- Choose events and parties carefully. Find celebrations that are already alcohol-free, such as city-run fireworks displays or parades. Or, host a sober party instead, focusing on family fun and the true meaning of the holiday.
- Avoid H.A.L.T. Many poor decisions, like excessive drinking, are made when in one of these states: hungry, angry, lonely, and tired. Stay in the moment and be emotionally self-aware.
- Have a list of meetings, if in recovery, and a list of numbers of those people who support sobriety.
- Go early, have an exit strategy. Park the car where it will not be blocked in. Bring a sober friend. Plan a way to safely get home at the end of the night.
- See an intoxicated driver is on the road; contact the local police. This small action could save a life.
According to the Drinkinganddriving.org, 90 percent of all impaired driving happens after drinking with family, friends, and co-workers. Mountainside urges Americans to keep the holiday festive and avoid putting their lives and the lives of others at risk by driving under the influence.
To learn more about Mountainside’s treatment programs for alcohol and drug abuse, visit Mountainside.com.