Feeling sad after christmas

SAMHSA’s National Helpline | SAMHSA

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  • SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.

    Also visit the online treatment locator.

SAMHSA’s National Helpline, 1-800-662-HELP (4357) (also known as the Treatment Referral Routing Service), or TTY: 1-800-487-4889 is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations.

Also visit the online treatment locator, or send your zip code via text message: 435748 (HELP4U) to find help near you. Read more about the HELP4U text messaging service.

The service is open 24/7, 365 days a year.

English and Spanish are available if you select the option to speak with a national representative. Currently, the 435748 (HELP4U) text messaging service is only available in English.

In 2020, the Helpline received 833,598 calls. This is a 27 percent increase from 2019, when the Helpline received a total of 656,953 calls for the year.

The referral service is free of charge. If you have no insurance or are underinsured, we will refer you to your state office, which is responsible for state-funded treatment programs. In addition, we can often refer you to facilities that charge on a sliding fee scale or accept Medicare or Medicaid. If you have health insurance, you are encouraged to contact your insurer for a list of participating health care providers and facilities.

The service is confidential. We will not ask you for any personal information. We may ask for your zip code or other pertinent geographic information in order to track calls being routed to other offices or to accurately identify the local resources appropriate to your needs.

No, we do not provide counseling. Trained information specialists answer calls, transfer callers to state services or other appropriate intake centers in their states, and connect them with local assistance and support.

  • Suggested Resources

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    It's Not Your Fault (NACoA) (PDF | 12 KB)
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    Explores the role of family therapy in recovery from mental illness or substance abuse. Explains how family therapy sessions are run and who conducts them, describes a typical session, and provides information on its effectiveness in recovery.

    For additional resources, please visit the SAMHSA Store.

Last Updated: 08/30/2022

Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs

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Misusing alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs can have both immediate and long-term health effects.

The misuse and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, illicit drugs, and prescription medications affect the health and well-being of millions of Americans. NSDUH estimates allow researchers, clinicians, policymakers, and the general public to better understand and improve the nation’s behavioral health. These reports and detailed tables present estimates from the 2021 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).



  • Among the 133.1 million current alcohol users aged 12 or older in 2021, 60.0 million people (or 45.1%) were past month binge drinkers. The percentage of people who were past month binge drinkers was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (29.2% or 9.8 million people), followed by adults aged 26 or older (22.4% or 49.3 million people), then by adolescents aged 12 to 17 (3.8% or 995,000 people). (2021 NSDUH)
  • Among people aged 12 to 20 in 2021, 15.1% (or 5.9 million people) were past month alcohol users. Estimates of binge alcohol use and heavy alcohol use in the past month among underage people were 8.3% (or 3.2 million people) and 1.6% (or 613,000 people), respectively. (2021 NSDUH)
  • In 2020, 50.0% of people aged 12 or older (or 138.5 million people) used alcohol in the past month (i.e., current alcohol users) (2020 NSDUH)
  • Among the 138.5 million people who were current alcohol users, 61.6 million people (or 44.4%) were classified as binge drinkers and 17.7 million people (28.8% of current binge drinkers and 12.8% of current alcohol users) were classified as heavy drinkers (2020 NSDUH)
  • The percentage of people who were past month binge alcohol users was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (31. 4%) compared with 22.9% of adults aged 26 or older and 4.1% of adolescents aged 12 to 17 (2020 NSDUH)
  • Excessive alcohol use can increase a person’s risk of stroke, liver cirrhosis, alcoholic hepatitis, cancer, and other serious health conditions
  • Excessive alcohol use can also lead to risk-taking behavior, including driving while impaired. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 29 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver daily


  • STOP Underage Drinking interagency portal - Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking
  • Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking
  • Talk. They Hear You.
  • Underage Drinking: Myths vs. Facts
  • Talking with your College-Bound Young Adult About Alcohol

Relevant links:

  • National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors
  • Department of Transportation Office of Drug & Alcohol Policy & Compliance
  • Alcohol Policy Information Systems Database (APIS)
  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism



  • In 2020, 20. 7% of people aged 12 or older (or 57.3 million people) used nicotine products (i.e., used tobacco products or vaped nicotine) in the past month (2020 NSDUH)
  • Among past month users of nicotine products, nearly two thirds of adolescents aged 12 to 17 (63.1%) vaped nicotine but did not use tobacco products. In contrast, 88.9% of past month nicotine product users aged 26 or older used only tobacco products (2020 NSDUH)
  • Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death, often leading to lung cancer, respiratory disorders, heart disease, stroke, and other serious illnesses. The CDC reports that cigarette smoking causes more than 480,000 deaths each year in the United States
  • The CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health reports that more than 16 million Americans are living with a disease caused by smoking cigarettes

Electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use data:

  • In 2021, 13.2 million people aged 12 or older (or 4.7%) used an e-cigarette or other vaping device to vape nicotine in the past month. The percentage of people who vaped nicotine was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (14.1% or 4.7 million people), followed by adolescents aged 12 to 17 (5.2% or 1.4 million people), then by adults aged 26 or older (3.2% or 7.1 million people).
  • Among people aged 12 to 20 in 2021, 11.0% (or 4.3 million people) used tobacco products or used an e-cigarette or other vaping device to vape nicotine in the past month. Among people in this age group, 8.1% (or 3.1 million people) vaped nicotine, 5.4% (or 2.1 million people) used tobacco products, and 3.4% (or 1.3 million people) smoked cigarettes in the past month. (2021 NSDUH)
  • Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2020 National Youth Tobacco Survey. Among both middle and high school students, current use of e-cigarettes declined from 2019 to 2020, reversing previous trends and returning current e-cigarette use to levels similar to those observed in 2018
  • E-cigarettes are not safe for youth, young adults, or pregnant women, especially because they contain nicotine and other chemicals


  • Tips for Teens: Tobacco
  • Tips for Teens: E-cigarettes
  • Implementing Tobacco Cessation Programs in Substance Use Disorder Treatment Settings
  • Synar Amendment Program


  • Truth Initiative
  • FDA Center for Tobacco Products
  • CDC Office on Smoking and Health
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Tobacco, Nicotine, and E-Cigarettes
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: E-Cigarettes



  • Among people aged 12 or older in 2021, 3. 3% (or 9.2 million people) misused opioids (heroin or prescription pain relievers) in the past year. Among the 9.2 million people who misused opioids in the past year, 8.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers compared with 1.1 million people who used heroin. These numbers include 574,000 people who both misused prescription pain relievers and used heroin in the past year. (2021 NSDUH)
  • Among people aged 12 or older in 2020, 3.4% (or 9.5 million people) misused opioids in the past year. Among the 9.5 million people who misused opioids in the past year, 9.3 million people misused prescription pain relievers and 902,000 people used heroin (2020 NSDUH)
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Understanding the Epidemic, an average of 128 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose


  • Medication-Assisted Treatment
  • Opioid Overdose Prevention Toolkit
  • TIP 63: Medications for Opioid Use Disorder
  • Use of Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder in Criminal Justice Settings
  • Opioid Use Disorder and Pregnancy
  • Clinical Guidance for Treating Pregnant and Parenting Women With Opioid Use Disorder and Their Infants
  • The Facts about Buprenorphine for Treatment of Opioid Addiction
  • Pregnancy Planning for Women Being Treated for Opioid Use Disorder
  • Tips for Teens: Opioids
  • Rural Opioid Technical Assistance Grants
  • Tribal Opioid Response Grants
  • Provider’s Clinical Support System - Medication Assisted Treatment Grant Program


  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Opioids
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Heroin
  • HHS Prevent Opioid Abuse
  • Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America
  • Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) Network
  • Prevention Technology Transfer Center (PTTC) Network



  • In 2021, marijuana was the most commonly used illicit drug, with 18. 7% of people aged 12 or older (or 52.5 million people) using it in the past year. The percentage was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (35.4% or 11.8 million people), followed by adults aged 26 or older (17.2% or 37.9 million people), then by adolescents aged 12 to 17 (10.5% or 2.7 million people).
  • The percentage of people who used marijuana in the past year was highest among young adults aged 18 to 25 (34.5%) compared with 16.3% of adults aged 26 or older and 10.1% of adolescents aged 12 to 17 (2020 NSDUH)
  • Marijuana can impair judgment and distort perception in the short term and can lead to memory impairment in the long term
  • Marijuana can have significant health effects on youth and pregnant women.


  • Know the Risks of Marijuana
  • Marijuana and Pregnancy
  • Tips for Teens: Marijuana

Relevant links:

  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: Marijuana
  • Addiction Technology Transfer Centers on Marijuana
  • CDC Marijuana and Public Health

Emerging Trends in Substance Misuse:

  • Methamphetamine—In 2019, NSDUH data show that approximately 2 million people used methamphetamine in the past year. Approximately 1 million people had a methamphetamine use disorder, which was higher than the percentage in 2016, but similar to the percentages in 2015 and 2018. The National Institute on Drug Abuse Data shows that overdose death rates involving methamphetamine have quadrupled from 2011 to 2017. Frequent meth use is associated with mood disturbances, hallucinations, and paranoia.
  • Cocaine—In 2019, NSDUH data show an estimated 5.5 million people aged 12 or older were past users of cocaine, including about 778,000 users of crack. The CDC reports that overdose deaths involving have increased by one-third from 2016 to 2017. In the short term, cocaine use can result in increased blood pressure, restlessness, and irritability. In the long term, severe medical complications of cocaine use include heart attacks, seizures, and abdominal pain.
  • Kratom—In 2019, NSDUH data show that about 825,000 people had used Kratom in the past month. Kratom is a tropical plant that grows naturally in Southeast Asia with leaves that can have psychotropic effects by affecting opioid brain receptors. It is currently unregulated and has risk of abuse and dependence. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that health effects of Kratom can include nausea, itching, seizures, and hallucinations.


  • Tips for Teens: Methamphetamine
  • Tips for Teens: Cocaine
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse

More SAMHSA publications on substance use prevention and treatment.

Last Updated: 01/05/2023

Post-holiday syndrome: why we feel sad after the holiday and how to avoid it


Post-holiday syndrome: why we are sad after the holiday and how to avoid it

January 8, 2020 22 503 views

Natalia Shirokova

We are so looking forward to the New Year: we pack gifts, come up with a menu, prepare outfits, make a wish list, buy sparklers. And a magical night - once again! - and it passes. Like one moment. And now, on January 1, there is a mountain of dirty dishes in the kitchen, and a miracle ... a miracle did not happen.

Sound familiar? Waiting for the holiday intoxicates stronger than champagne, and then comes a breakdown and disappointment. This can be avoided. Let's prepare in advance so that the blues don't ruin the holidays.

Where does disappointment come from

Our complex and mega-intelligent brain is to blame. A lizard, for example, never thinks that something is wrong in our world. She does not feel disappointed even when she sees that a predator is eating her cubs. There just aren't enough neurons in her brain to imagine some other world. She does not imagine that there is a world without predators, so she is not offended that it does not meet some expectations.

We always expect something more from life. Therefore, we focus on our disappointments instead of rejoicing at achievements.

Hormones also affect us. When we expect something pleasant, the body produces hormones of happiness - we feel uplifted and euphoric. But very quickly they split and the brain returns to its usual business: the search for potential threats. Hormones of happiness are replaced by hormones of stress - and disappointment is right there.

Fortunately, this can be dealt with.

Goals instead of expectations

On New Year's Eve, we are waiting for something very big and beautiful - sometimes we don't even know what. That life will suddenly change, Santa Claus will come, a wizard will fly in a blue helicopter, a pumpkin will turn into a carriage, and what else happens in fairy tales. But life is not a fairy tale, and waiting for something I don’t know what will surely lead to disappointment.

Review expectations and change them to goals. Source

Therefore, we change abstract expectations for specific goals. The goal is the result we want to achieve. We have written a lot about how to set and achieve them, and now is the best time to practice this. Think about what exactly you want in the new year and how you can achieve it. Break everything down into tiny steps, and let the first ones be scheduled for January 1st. Then the new year will begin with victories and achievements, which means that there will be no place for disappointment.


Switching involves breaking the circuit of signals in our brain. Anything that will distract you from "looping" on unjustified expectations will help. Get out your favorite stamp collection, watch a good movie.

Physical activity distracts from sad thoughts and stimulates the production of endorphins. Source

It's even better to do something active: go visiting, go skiing or skating, play with the kids, just take a walk. Physical activity stimulates the release of endorphins. Make it so that you have no time to mope and feel sorry for yourself. New Year holidays were not invented for this at all.

Create miracles with your own hands

Research shows that people become much happier when they do something for others: buy gifts, give help, do charity work.

Don't wait for Santa Claus - become him.

You yourself can become a miracle and Santa Claus for others. Retrieved

Opportunities for charity and help often lie right under our noses. To do this, it is not necessary to go to third world countries or cities affected by a natural disaster. Help out a friend who is moving into a new apartment, offer neighbors to babysit, smile at a passer-by, skip someone in line, or call someone who is lonely right now.

Live in the present

Avoiding a hangover from expectations is easy if you live in the here and now. Focus on today, think about what is wonderful about it. There was a delicious salad left in the fridge. Friends are calling. There is a decorated Christmas tree, and under it are brand new gifts. Do the exercise: find at least 10 reasons to be happy in the present moment.

Maybe a miracle happened after all?

Based on the materials of the books "Manifesto of Twenties", "Hormones of Happiness"

Post cover — unsplash. com

Christmas depression. Psychologist's advice on how to survive the January holidays

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Children are looking forward to the New Year and Christmas - the time when parents hide gifts under the tree, allow them to watch their favorite cartoons and surround with attention. But with age, joy becomes less, but stress and worries - more at times.

January 4, 2022 08:008 575

Lady Gaga

New Year is a holiday that should be filled with magic, family warmth and comfort. Elegant Christmas trees, no less bright guests, a feast, making wishes to the sound of chimes…

Stress remains behind the façade of the celebration: frightening deadlines, pre-holiday race, fuss due to preparations for December 31st. Next comes the January weekend, from which we sometimes expect too much. Hence - disappointments, a feeling of emptiness, even depression, but it seemed that it was worth enjoying 10 days of rest. Why do we feel sad and how to deal with it? Let's ask the psychologist of the sixth season of "Tomboy" - Lyubov Rozenberg.

Emotional trauma

Alena Sviridova always preferred to work on holidays

A couple of years ago Alena Sviridova admitted that she is not one of those stars who are in a hurry to decorate the Christmas tree and arrange a luxurious feast. “I can’t stand the New Year,” said the Pink Flamingo performer. — I hate strained tyagomotinu. And in fact, the frenzied hype infuriates me. Sometimes, like everyone else, I cook Olivier salad, but I do it with disgust. On New Year's Eve I like to work. When I speak, I feel that the mission has been fulfilled.”

Since Sviridova's birthday is in August, it is in September that she begins to feel a certain renewal. But on January 1, the singer does not feel anything. By the way, the artist is skeptical not only about the New Year, but also about the stamps in the passport: after two failed unions, Alena said that marriages are “bullshit”. After four years of relationship, the star broke up with her beloved Dmitry Miroshnichenko. Now the blonde is happy with David Vardanyan, but she is not going to marry him.

So, can disappointments in personal life affect skepticism about family holidays? “Disappointments can be safely attributed to emotional trauma, which means that their consequences are reflected in a person’s entire life for a long time,” Lyubov Rosenberg is sure. “If more than one holiday has been spoiled and a persistent negative attitude has been received (fear of a recurrence of depression, unjustified expectations and unfulfilled hopes), then the holidays themselves become undesirable.”

There were rumors that the singer secretly married Vardanyan, but Alena denied the speculation

The Gestalt therapist explained that the general fuss and excitement with the implementation of a bunch of obligatory pre-holiday procedures lead to premature emotional burnout, which often reaches its climax on the eve of the holiday.

“But I believe that this is not the only and not the most important thing that influences the attitude towards family holidays. In any family there are traditions, rules in which children grow up. In adulthood, we often repeat the scenario of the life of the parental family. If childhood holidays are associated with warm memories, filled with a sense of miracle and love, then this will be a tradition in your family. Another story, when there were no holidays in childhood, but I really wanted them. Then unmet needs often lead to a real script being written for every celebration. Careful preparation and holding of the event is like a tribute to the inner child, helping to close the gestalt from childhood,” the expert clarified.

It should be noted that by "family holiday" everyone means something different. For many adults, we are talking about the classic unit of society - mom, dad, children, grandparents - and the time when relatives got together. “No family, no holiday. Someone has died, someone is far away ... It is in this situation that the holiday is colored with sad memories of an irrevocable and carefree childhood. In the case of Alena Sviridova, this is a conscious rejection of traditional family values ​​in favor of free relationships and personal comfort. It is difficult to say exactly what caused this, but there are certainly reasons. Everyone has the right to make such a choice, ”concluded Lyubov Anatolyevna.

Working on holidays

10 days off is a luxury for workaholics

Not everyone can afford to rest according to the production calendar. We dare to assume that some stars do not like the New Year and the January holidays simply because for them this is a time of active work for double fees at corporate parties, and not at all because of some personal beliefs.

“Hard work and an exhausting work schedule, in which there are famous and popular presenters, singers and musicians during the New Year marathon, and other publicly celebrated holidays, of course, affect the attitude towards family celebrations. But after the holidays, when the rest go to work, the stars can calmly and beautifully relax with their families. There are many examples of popular artists who always celebrate the New Year with their families, refusing to earn money in favor of closeness and observing traditions, ”said the psychologist.

Lyubov Anatolyevna emphasized that there is a need, work that affects the well-being of the family, and there is emotional burnout that always overtakes people before the holidays, after a long and intense preparation for them. “After all, there is a lot of not just financial costs, but also empty fuss, following some social norms and rules. The feeling of tension, fatigue and uselessness of all this often leads to post-New Year depression, when you don’t want anything but lying on the couch, watching TV and eating what it is not known how many people have been prepared and purchased for the celebration, ”summed up Lyubov Anatolyevna.

A period of loneliness and dashed hopes

After A Star Is Born, everyone was talking about Lady Gaga's romance with Bradley Cooper, but the artists refuted the gossip

For foreign stars, the main holiday of the year is Catholic Christmas. True, there are exceptions to the rule. At various times, Ozzy Osbourne, Hugh Grant, Colin Firth spoke about their antipathy to the winter celebration.

In 2010, Lady Gaga admitted that she hates Christmas, because during this period she feels especially lonely. Then the celebrity did not have a serious and stable relationship, so she can be understood.

So, is it true that we feel loneliness especially acutely in the pre-New Year/post-New Year period, and this can cause depression? “Definitely so! agreed the Gestalt therapist. - It's one thing to be a purposeful and self-sufficient person on ordinary days, and quite another to be alone, so self-NON-sufficient, when everyone around gathers in large families, goes to relatives. They meet with the closest and loved ones ... At these moments, everyone who surrounded and gave a feeling of being needed suddenly disappears and the person is left alone with his thoughts. And this applies not only to famous personalities, but also to many ordinary people.

Explosive temper not only for Miley Cyrus, but also for her family

Miley Cyrus noted that Christmas makes her sad because of the general hypocrisy and greed. “I just hope that people give love and acceptance only to their family, but also to those who do not get everything they wanted due to unfair life circumstances,” she wrote in a microblog.

The singer also admitted that when her family gathers at the festive table, real debates on sensitive topics flare up between relatives, which end with a “traditional fist fight”.

It turns out that the New Year is not only a general enthusiasm, but also a terrible stress. If relatives gather, whom we see only on holidays, there is a fear of drinking too much or saying something wrong. The celebration turns into a test of strength and takes away strength even from those who are lucky enough to have a strong family.

In addition, high expectations prevent us from being happy: we want to turn the evening into a fairy tale, but what if banality and boredom come out? It's the same with January weekends, when long-awaited meetings with friends become a routine, or we can't think of anything to do at all . ..

Despite the difficulties, Miley always spends the holidays with her family

So what are the real reasons for the New Year and January depression: high expectations, fatigue after hard work in December, aggravation of problems in the family, inability to occupy oneself on weekends, if a person is used to work without rest?

« All of the above can cause post-New Year depression, - commented Lyubov Anatolyevna. - We do not know how to distribute forces and prioritize ourselves and our own mental health. And in long preparatory and holidays, this is especially important. Add to this unmet needs, unjustified expectations, aggravated resentment and new experiences. After all, we are already delaying preparations for the holiday until the last, precisely because for many it is stress in itself. And not for everyone, a meeting with a family at a round table laden with dishes and drinks ends with declarations of love .... On holidays, not only the number of injuries increases, but also divorces, personal tragedies.

Advice from an expert

Lyubov Rozenberg is a well-known Gestalt therapist, TV expert of federal channels and psychologist of the sixth season of the show "Boys" on the Friday!

What will help restore the festive mood, forget about the fuss and worries?

“Give yourself permission to be something other than what others expect you to be. Be the way you want and feel personally you! You can not run around the shops, but put them into envelopes with holiday symbols, one bill at a time. You can not stand at the stove for two days, but buy everything you need before serving at the table in the nearest store. You can declare this New Year's Eve a time for communication, declarations of love and festivities along the festive streets, ”advises Lyubov Rozenberg.

It's not worth doing a celebration according to all the canons if it's hard work for you. “Track your inner state and be able to refuse what is not simple and easy for you at the moment. Get out of there, where something is annoying, where it is sad and lonely, where they can hurt and offend.

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