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Your Healthy Family: Why you should try "Dry January" or consider sobriety

Posted at 9:35 AM, Dec 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-31 09:35:44-05

Many people make the New Year's Resolution to have a "dry January," where they drink no alcohol for the whole month, or to get completely sober. Experts say not drinking alcohol — even if just for a month — has instant benefits.

Patrick Cronin with ARK Behavioral Health has been in long-term recovery since 2005.

“When someone puts down a drink or a drug, I'm not saying everything comes back, but your life should get better and usually it's better the day you put that down," Cronin said.

He's spent the last 15 years counseling others.

Daniel Gasser — a recovering addict, author, and self-help coach — said he’s seen his life improve in many ways since he gave up drinking.

"I can remember names. I can remember phone numbers. Physically, I sleep better. Appetite much better; I don't need to eat junk food anymore. It's not just about me anymore. When you're drinking, it's all about me," Gasser said.

Dr. David Mendez is an addiction expert with UCHealth Cedar, and said people with a serious substance abuse disorder who struggle to over-come cravings for even a day can find benefits through getting help.

"You get to see people reconnect with family and relationships, and get wherever they want to be with their work, and really see people change their lives in a dramatic way," he said.

If you or someone you love is having trouble with alcohol, don't be afraid to reach out for help. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has a hot line you can call for free, 24/7 at 1-800-662-HELP.