Health experts have urged people in Hull not to let drinking become a daily activity as Government restrictions relating to the coronavirus pandemic continue.
Drinking alcohol in excess can suppress the immune system, lower mood and increase the risk of a range of health problems.
With pubs and bars closed for the foreseeable future, national figures show supermarket alcohol sales are increasing.
Gilda Nunez, programme lead for drugs and alcohol for Hull City Council’s Public Health team, said: “This is a stressful time for all of us and it can be tempting to use alcohol as a reward, to break up the day or because you feel stressed or anxious. The problem is that long term, drinking will reduce your ability to cope with the situation.
Whilst getting face to face support isn’t possible right now – help is still available
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“It affects the amount of deep sleep you get and can make you anxious and depressed – it also lowers your immune system. There is also a risk of developing a dependency on alcohol, if you are using it daily and in high quantities as a coping mechanism.
“There are simple things you can do to lower your intake. Make sure you take days off – the advice from Public Health England is to have at least three days off drinking every week and to have a maximum of 14 units of alcohol – which is around six or seven pints of beer or glasses or wine.
“You can get a free app to help you track this. There is a great range of low and no alcohol drinks, including beers and spirits, which have all the flavour but can be enjoyed without the risks alcohol carries.
“You can do small things to make sure drinking doesn’t creep up when you do have alcohol, including using smaller glasses, and not starting too early.”
Support is available in Hull for anyone concerned they may be drinking too much. Find more information and advice here or search in your app provider to download the Days Off app and track your drinking. Call 0800 6126126 for specialist advice on alcohol.