Therapists are ‘begging people to ask for help’, with the latest drug and alcohol death toll ‘higher than ever’, according to the UK Addiction Treatment Group (UKAT).
Recovery Lighthouse, a Worthing-based drug and alcohol rehab facility, has revealed it’s treatment admissions for last year were the highest they’ve had whilst Public Health England revealed its highest ever alcohol and drug death tolls across the region.
New data shows that last year, Recovery Lighthouse — which is ran by UKAT — admitted 226 clients into its residential rehabilitation facility.
Nuno Albuquerque, consultant treatment lead for Recovery Lighthouse, said: “We said all throughout 2020 that although the pandemic was frightening and uncertain, one thing remained unchanged; that addiction would not stop, and that if those who were struggling then didn’t get access to the help they needed, their situation would ultimately worsen.
“We’re seeing off the chart calls for help from people whose lives have been turned upside down by addiction, which is why we’re admitting more people than ever before.”
In the last four years, admissions have risen by 22 per cent when 184 addicts checked in to the rehab in 2017.
Last year, addicts from across the region admitted into the rehab for a range of addiction types, including alcohol, drugs, prescription drugs and behavioural disorders like gaming, gambling and sex addiction, resulting in the highest number of annual admissions on record.
This figure is up 17 per cent from 192 in 2020. This has been described as ‘staggering’ despite the Covid-19 pandemic, in which therapists warned that the Government’s ‘stay home’ message would ‘exacerbate the addiction crisis’.
UKAT’s analysis of recent Public Health England data shows that since 2017, alcohol-related mortality rates across the South East have risen from 2,971 in 2017 to 3,132 in 2020 — a 5 per cent increase.
Similarly, the analysis of recent drug poisoning death data for the region shows a 12 per cent rise, from 516 drug poisoning deaths in 2017 to 575 recorded in 2020.
Mr Albuquerque added: “It saddens us to know that mothers, fathers, grandparents, neighbours and friends lose their lives to addiction when there is help available that could save them.
“More people than ever lost their lives to drugs and alcohol in 2020, but thankfully, we’re seeing more people than ever now asking for help.
“If you or your loved one is struggling with addiction, we are here. Get in touch.”
A free 24/7 confidential live chat service for help and support with addiction is available on the Recovery Lighthouse website.
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