The rise of alcohol consumption during the pandemic

Reporter: Annalise Iraola Writer: Matias Abril
Published: Updated:

The pandemic was a tough time, and some people turned to alcohol to cope, but to double down, the pandemic made it easier to access booze.

A Florida law passed in 2021 allowed restaurants and other vendors to sell alcohol to go.

Recently released federal data shows that U.S. consumption of alcohol increased at an accelerated rate during the pandemic.

The number of alcohol related deaths also spiked across the nation, rising more than 45%

The pandemic placed strain on mental health. Loneliness and economic uncertainty contributed to exacerbating an already existing public issue.

The executive director of Drug Free Lee, Deb Comella, spoke about this issue.

“There were a number of issues at play,” Comella said. “People were unemployed; people were underemployed. People were isolated. Kids were home without supervision, and now you can get alcohol delivered. I think that if people were going to drink, they probably were going to find a way to get it, but it’s certainly the pandemic put a lot of stress on everybody in a lot of different ways.”

According to U.S. data, during the pandemic was the highest alcohol related consumption since 1988.

Fortunately, there are resources for people struggling with substance abuse.

There are numerous local non-profits that provide free counseling to people struggling with addiction.

If you’re still struggling with substance abuse, the first thing to do is seek help.

If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction, you can call the national hotline at 1-800-662-4357 for the substance abuse and mental health services administration.

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