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#Lockdown: How to assist family members who are addicts, especially alcoholics

31 March 2020 2:51 PM
Tags:
Drugs
Alcoholism
withdrawal
Lockdown

Substances disorder specialist Dr Duncan Laurenson shares what you can do if you are in lockdown with an addict.

Government has placed regulations, not only restricting movement but banning the sale of alcohol and cigarettes during the Covid-19 lcokdown.

What happens if you are confined to a space with a family member who is an addict?

Ray White, standing in for Azania Mosaka, spoke to substances disorder specialist Dr Duncan Laurenson on the impact of withdrawal and how to assist an addict.

He says the most dangerous drug in terms of withdrawal is alcohol, followed by heroine and then possibly sleeping tablets or tranquilisers.

The risks regarding withdrawal from alcohol are dependent on how long you have been drinking, how much you have been drinking and also your age is a big risk factor - if someone is over 50 or 60 years old you are at much more risk of going into severe withdrawal.

Dr Duncan Laurenson, Substances disorder specialist

Withdrawal from alcohol can result in ultimately seizures, heart attacks , strokes and a confused state called encephalopathy as well.

Dr Duncan Laurenson, Substances disorder specialist

In terms of alcohol, if one is going to go into severe withdrawal one would probably have some sort of a history of withdrawal anyway. Someone would have shakes in the morning, get very sweaty during the day, they might become irritable and confused.

Dr Duncan Laurenson, Substances disorder specialist

Laurenson says the first step to helping someone with severe withdrawal on any drug is to phone your local practitioner.

They can phone one of the rehab clinics directly and ask for advice.

Dr Duncan Laurenson, Substances disorder specialist

You can be admitted to most private clinics. I am not sure what the status is with the different public sector facilities in different provinces but I think most of them you can be admitted certainly for severe alcohol withdrawal. You can call an ambulance just like anything if you are really worried about someone.

Dr Duncan Laurenson, Substances disorder specialist

Click on the link below to find out more about other drugs....


31 March 2020 2:51 PM
Tags:
Drugs
Alcoholism
withdrawal
Lockdown

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