Alcohol and taking control

It’s the holidays, which for many people means time to relax often with a drink. Australia has lots of famous and historical associations with alcohol. Beers, wine, rum, they’re all popular Australian drinks.

However it is too easy to drink an unsafe amount.

Government health guidance describes standard drinks and how many you should have in a week. Labels on the alcoholic drinks tell you how many SDs are in the drink.

What is the right amount?

This link to the Australian Government Department of Health website states a safe amount is two standard drinks a day to avoid long term harm to health. This applies to both men and women.

What do you do when you have been drinking more than this?

Life events, particular friends, easy access, lots of factors can lead to an increase in consumption and for some people it can remain high beyond the trigger event.

I’ve helped multiple people regain control of their drinking. It can be very difficult and some people are more prone to addiction than others but I have found that it is helpful to think about what you are gaining rather than what you are losing or giving up. Examples of what you might be gaining are a better quality of family life, more control of your work and usually less alcohol usually means an improved financial situation.

Where to start ?

Hello Sunday Morning

Hello Sunday Morning is an online service which is growing in popularity through it’s easy to use website and Daybreak app giving people information and support to help them achieve their goals in either reducing or stopping drinking.

GP/Family Doctor

Your GP should be your first point of call in accessing local services to help you reduce or stop drinking. Some services need a referral, many don’t but it’s helpful to speak to a health professional to make a plan on how to proceed.

If you live in Sydney, East Sydney Doctors have a dedicated clinic called Clean Slate for safely stopping drinking through a home detox approach.

AA (Alcoholics Anonymous)

This is one of the oldest and best known services for stopping drinking. There are meetings everywhere and if one group doesn’t suit you there will be another one nearby. Each one has a different vibe so it’s worth trying more than one. You can find your nearest meeting at:

Smart Recovery

Smart Recovery is a health promotion charity that has a group meeting approach and is an alternative to AA. They have groups for all forms of addictive behaviour. You can find your nearest meeting on their website:

Declaration and disclaimer: I do not have any affiliation with any of the services described above. This post is not a substitute for medical advice. You should not make any sudden drastic changes to your drinking without speaking to a healthcare professional first

Dr Amit Patel