1. A lack of family and friends who offer support during this time can lead to a sense of loneliness and being isolated. Often the addict has already pushed away everyone who wants to help, and so the holidays are a time of sadness and emotional upheaval. The individual mat turn to drugs, alcohol, or other addictive behaviors in an attempt to cover these emotions.
2. The stress of the holiday season can be intense, and this stress can accelerate substance abuse or other addictive behaviors. Since it is one of the biggest and most influential factors involved in a relapse or an increase in addiction stress should be minimized and relieved whenever possible.
3. The hectic pace of the Christmas season and the sheer number of engagements and invitations may be a factor in an increase in substance abuse. When you become tired or overwhelmed you are more likely to give in to temptation, and to drink or abuse other substances more frequently and in larger amounts.
4. Isolation can play a big role in substance abuse increases. When the individual feels isolated and shut off from the rest of society they tend to become depressed. Depression is one of the main contributing factors in numerous cases of substance abuse or addiction.
5. The emotional whirlwind that these holidays can bring can increase the negative outlook and reinforce the substance abuse. The individual addicted may feel like they do not fit in, and that everyone else is happy but that their life never changes. This can lead to substances being abused more frequently in order to eliminate these emotions.