Alcohol or Drug Use During Pregnancy - Topic Overview
What can you do to stop using alcohol or drugs?
You may already know that alcohol and
drugs can harm you and your baby. But it can still be hard to stop. Changing
your behaviors isn't easy. Some people need treatment to help them quit using
drugs or alcohol. Here are some things you can do:
Take the first step. Admitting that you need help can be hard.
You may feel ashamed or have doubts about whether you can quit. But your
treatment can be successful only if you make the choice to stay sober. Remember
that many people have struggled with these same feelings and have recovered
from substance abuse. Quitting now will help you and your baby.
Tell someone. If you can't stop drinking or using
drugs on your own, tell someone that you need help. There are people and
programs to help you. Your doctor is a good place to start. He or she can talk
to you about treatment options. Your doctor may be able to give you medicines
that can ease withdrawal symptoms. Or he or she may be able to find a hospital
or clinic that you can go to for treatment.
You might also want
to tell a friend or loved one. Having someone on your side that you know well,
telling you that you can do this for yourself and your baby, is a very
important part of recovery.
Make changes to your life. It can be hard to stop using alcohol or drugs when it has become a
part of your life. You may need to make changes to your routine, like not being
around certain people, or not going to places where you used to drink or use
drugs. Ask friends and family to support your changes.
Consider counseling. Counseling helps you make changes in your life so you can
stay sober. You learn to cope with tough emotions and make good choices. You
may get counseling in a group or one-on-one.
Join a support group. Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics
Anonymous were formed to help people who want to stop doing things that add no
value to their lives. You may have more success quitting if you share your
story, hear the stories of those who may be struggling and those who have
successfully quit, and find someone to partner with.