Tipsy? Expert's tips for reining in holiday drinking

December 7, 2012 by Molly Mcelroy in Medicine & Health / Health

It can hardly be the holiday season without a nip in the air and a nip of 'nog. A family gathering goes down a little easier with a glass, or three, of wine. And we might go to a festive work party thinking "I'll just have a ginger ale," only to end up reasoning "On the other hand, one cocktail can't hurt."

Oh, the slippery slope. And it's not just when snow is falling.

The omnipresence of at holiday gatherings and the social ease that a little buzz provides make it hard to limit ourselves. Risk of relapse among alcoholics is greater this time of year, when stress and may mix at gatherings where alcohol has a central role.

Dennis Donovan, director of the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute at the University of Washington, says that alcohol is a major issue around the holidays for both and those recovering from alcoholism. He's spent more than three decades treating people with alcohol and other addictions. He has advice for how to drink moderately, and treatment approaches he's used with people recovering from alcohol problems.

So perhaps we can strive to be home, but not hammered, for the holidays.

For social drinkers and people hoping to curb their , Donovan suggests following these guidelines:

For people struggling with alcohol use or in recovery, Donovan advises:

Provided by University of Washington

"Tipsy? Expert's tips for reining in holiday drinking" December 7, 2012