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Think before you drink this holiday season

newYearsThe U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) reports that 40% of traffic-related deaths during Christmas and New Year’s involve drunk drivers — a 12% increase over the rest of the month of December.


  • More people drink during the holidays due to parties and other events.
  • People underestimate their level of impairment and get behind the wheel.
  • The holidays are very stressful. People who don’t usually drink might to cope with the stress that the holiday season brings. Non-drinkers have a lower tolerance to alcohol and may feel the effect much quicker.
  • People are rushing and there are more drivers on the road.  Pair this with bad weather and alcohol and you have a recipe for disaster.

The following are some ideas to help avoid alcohol related problems this holiday season:

  • Don’t feel like you HAVE to drink to have fun.  Although drinking is a part of most holiday celebrations, you don’t have to participate.  Pour yourself a glass of soda or sparkling water instead.
  • If you are hosting a holiday party, remember to offer non-alcoholic beverages.  And if you see someone who is drunk and plans on driving, take their keys and call them a cab.
  • Alternate an alcoholic beverage with a glass of water.  This will help you slow down and be more in control.
  • Do not serve alcohol to minors.
  • Designate a driver ahead of time. This may seem like the most common sense idea, but many people forget to do this.

Remember, anytime you consume alcohol and drive, you increase your risk of being in a car accident.

If you feel like the holidays are causing you excessive depression and/or anxiety or if you are drinking more, the team at Horizon can help. We offer private counseling services throughout Buffalo and also substance abuse counseling.  Call us today at (716) 831-1800 for more information.

From all of us at Horizon Health Services, we hop you and your family has a safe and happy holiday season!