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Alcohol and Aging: Getting Help

August 1, 2013 by HealthyFamilies BC

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If alcohol is having a negative impact on you, your family, or others, there are people and programs to help you.

You can also think about making lifestyle changes to support your own health and well-being.

Who to Call

If you or an older friend needs help, talk to your doctor or call one of the toll-free numbers below.

The B.C. Alcohol and Drug Information and Referral Service is confidential, multilingual, free, and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week:

  • Call toll-free, 1-800-663-1441, or dial 2-1-1 in Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley and Squamish-Lillooet regional districts
  • Text: 604-836-6381
  • For deaf and hearing-impaired assistance (TTY), call 604-875-0885
  • Email us from the BC211 contact form

Visit HealthLink BC to learn about HealthLink BC’s toll-free 8-1-1 phone line and visit the B.C. Government Directory for other toll-free health information lines in B.C.

Lifestyle Changes

Think about your “triggers” – the things that make you want to take a drink. For example, maybe you drink to relax after a stressful day. Think about another way to relax, such as taking a walk or going to a movie.

  • Making certain lifestyle changes can help improve your health and well-being, and may even take your mind off drinking.
  • Focus on your accomplishments and the good things in your life.
  • Consider volunteering – it’s a great way to share your knowledge, talents and experience, and make new friends.
  • Reach out and learn something new.
  • Consider taking a class or joining a seniors’ organization.
  • Take up a hobby.
  • Adopt a pet.
  • Learn to meditate.
  • Be more physically active: take a dance, exercise or yoga class.
  • Enjoy the great outdoors: go for walks, grow a garden, golf or swim.
  • Learn stretching exercises with the Move for Life DVD for older adults. Order your own free copy from the Physical Activity Line (PAL) at 1-877-725-1149, or borrow a copy from your local public library.
  • Eat a healthy diet, with more fresh vegetables and fruit, and less fat, sugars, and fast foods.
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