Why alcohol is not a good coping strategy during COVID-19
Dr Matthew Cullen, Psychiatrist, St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney
Well, as most of you know, alcohol sales have gone through the roof during the COVID-19 period, and is this a good coping strategy or not?
Well, the evidence suggests that alcohol is really not an effective way to help during periods of high stress such as we’re experiencing at the moment.
The problem with alcohol is it interferes with your sleep. The more you drink, it disturbs your ability to fall asleep, and of course interferes with that very important part of sleep REM sleep.
Secondly, alcohol, although temporarily, might provide some relaxation or reduction of worry or concern, actually has a progressively negative effect. So, the short-term benefit is well exceeded by the long-term negative impact.
So, how does one use alcohol during these periods? Like at all times, sensibly. Drink within the recommended limits, make sure that you don’t drink to excess, and then you’ll get that happy balance between what is an acceptable amount of alcohol in your system without it disturbing your sleep, or increasing your anxiety.
Last Reviewed: 03/06/2020
Alcohol: how much is too much?
Too much alcohol can be bad for you. Find out the recommended Australian limits for men and for women, and for specific groups such as pregnant women.
Bipolar disorder (sometimes called manic-depression) is an illness, a medical condition.
Sleep problems and snoring
Insomnia is the inability to fall asleep or remain asleep for an adequate length of time. Find out what products are available for sleep problems and snoring.
Alcohol: are you drinking too much?
Many people are confused about how much alcohol they can drink before it could be harmful to their health and wellbeing.
Alcohol: what is it?
Alcohol is a depressant drug, which means it slows down the activity of the central nervous system.