Alcohol and Mental Health: 5 Alternatives that Won’t Kill You

bartender making cocktail

Many people do not believe alcohol is a drug, but the reality is that it is the most frequently used and readily accessible drug in Australia.

Alcohol is the most frequently used legal drug in Australia. It is a depressant, which means it slows down the mind.

Many young people feel the need to be part of a big group, and frequently drinking is a huge part of socializing. But you should understand your limits and not drink more than you need to.

Sometimes the pressure to drink comes from friends and loved ones. But choosing to consume alcohol should be in your terms since there’s no ‘safe way’ to use alcohol.

Alcohol should not be used as a coping mechanism for mental health issues as it only worsens the problem and will grow into a damaging addiction.

Here are some alternatives instead:

  1. Go for a nice long walk. Take your dog if you have one. Or even better, ask a mother with a baby or toddler if you could help her by walking her dog.
  2. Meditate. This takes some practice to not sit in silence and overthink your thoughts- but instead to empty your mind and think of nothing.
  3. Make a mocktail. This is more so to soothe your urges more so than helping your mental health.
  4. Exercise. Swimming, biking, running, and hiking are all easy exercises that anybody can do. Exercises cause your body to release endorphins (the happy hormones) that make you feel better.
  5. Listen to podcasts. This allows you to focus on some other things that people are talking about and take your mind off whatever was causing you stress. It could also allow you to approach your problems in a new way.

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