By Holly Fitting LMHC, LCDP, Vice President of Residential and Recovery Services, The Providence Center

April is a time filled with many joyous occasions. With spring in full bloom, we look forward to the celebration of upcoming events just around the corner; sporting events, outdoor barbeques, and summer parties, just to name a few. April is also the month that we raise awareness about alcohol consumption and substance use.

It’s been reported that nearly 90,000 people die every year from alcohol-related deaths. This month, we take the opportunity to raise public awareness about the use of alcohol and how it may be affecting individuals, families, businesses, and communities.

While 86.4 percent of individuals, age 18 and older reported having a drink at least once in their life, it’s no surprise that the dangers of overindulging can be fatal. By raising awareness about alcohol misuse and abuse, individuals, organizations, and health professionals can take action to prevent it, both within their own homes and by serving those in their community.

Below are some of the common signs and symptoms to watch for regarding alcohol and/or substance abuse:

  • Being unable to limit the amount of alcohol you drink.
  • Trying to cut down on how much you drink but making unsuccessful attempts.
  • Spending large amounts of time buying, consuming, or recovering from alcohol use.
  • Failing to fulfill obligations at work, home, or school due to repeated use.
  • Giving up or reducing social and work activities or hobbies.
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms ­ such as nausea, sweating, and shaking — when you don’t drink, or drinking to avoid these symptoms.

If you or someone you know is in need of help, The Providence Center (TPC) can help, with a variety of programs that are specially designed to meet the needs of each individual and make their recovery a reality. From residential programs to intensive services and outpatient counseling, TPC has made recovery possible for 50 years through more than 60 programs and wraparound services that meet each individual’s unique needs for healthy living.