Addiction is Going to be the Second Pandemic

In a recent interview, Nick Conn of Help4Addiction voiced his thoughts on the massive leap in addiction advice service use in the UK.

Nick Conn has been clean for twelve years. As a former police officer, he was under constant pressure to perform. With long hours and the constant threat of danger, he eventually wound up addicted to cocaine. 12 years ago, he made a choice: get off drugs, get out the job, and make a radical change to his life by going through the rehab process.

Now an addict in recovery and 12 years clean, Nick has dedicated his life to helping others to do the same. Conn sits at the head of Help4Addiction, which is a nationwide addiction advisory and paid private rehab selection service. They offer help to both private and NHS patients that seek to quit using drink or drugs… and Nick shoulders a large part of the burden on his own.

Family Man and Carer

Recently having fathered his second child, Nick is now in a position where he can look back on his life and be a little proud of himself. He speaks to dozens of addicts every day, not just through his site but through his own private Instagram account – @dadinrecovery. Even as he was giving a recent Telegraph interview, Conn was private messaging with a 41-year-old father of two, in a similar position to himself. This father was a small business owner that had been closed during the pandemic. The resulting stress had seen the man turn to ketamine… an addiction that will only ever spiral downwards.

Nevertheless, and despite the dozens of messages waiting for him on IG each day, Nick tries to help every single one of them. Some of them don’t really want the help, some are just inquiring, and some people approach him to see how they can help a spouse or loved one. Whatever they reach out to him for, Nick is the kind of guy that will always do them a good turn, if he can.

In recent weeks, Nick was contacted by a 39-year-old man who had been laid off. His wife had called him a loser for drinking all day and not supporting his family. When things escalated, his wife had turned him out, effectively making him homeless with nowhere to turn. Within a 48-hour period, Nick had found him a two-year residential rehab stint by way of his connections in the industry… it’s not what you know, but who!

Free Help for Addicts

Nick’s organisation can help those in private healthcare find the right rehab clinic for them, or it can offer advice and limited support to those who are waiting to go through rehab on the NHS. However, Nick Conn knows that not all of us can afford to pay, or to wait. To this end, he offers a series of free web talks with industry professionals over on YouTube. He also runs a podcast which you can get to over on Spotify.

If you are in recovery from addiction, you can engage the HALT technique to manage those triggers. Think:

H – are you hungry? Eat something and see if you still feel like turning to drugs or alcohol.

A – are you angry? Anger triggers the same hormones to release as those that cause us to use. Are you angry? Taking a brisk walk in the cool air could solve your urge to use drugs.

L – are you lonely? Some of us go back to using because it feels nostalgic. It is something you did when you were younger, fitter, and had more friends.

T – are you tired? By far the biggest trigger of all is tiredness. Even an hour less sleep than normal can leave you feeling grumpy. Grumpiness escalates into anger and so on.

Use the HALT trick to modify your behaviour and self-manage your addiction recovery, to prevent a relapse.

For everything else? Reach out to Help4Addiction and start getting the support you need, today.

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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