Lakeview Health’s Chief Clinical Officer Explains New Year’s Eve in the Mind of an Addict

New Year’s Eve is notoriously difficult for those in recovery. This time of year adds many layers of stress and can mean facing multiple triggers that have previously led to dangerous drinking or drug use. Social gatherings bring constant questions about how the year has gone, which often brings up feelings of guilt about the past. In addition to these stressors, the ubiquitous presence of alcohol at parties brings greater temptations. When everyone else is drinking heavily, severe misuse is camouflaged.

It is also at this time, however, that many recognize they need help. Sometimes the realization comes from extended binges. Other times, concerns raised by family and friends—whether in casual conversations or planned interventions—can lead someone to acknowledge they have a problem.

Lakeview Health offers the following five signs of alcohol addiction:

  • Tolerance, which is the ability to drink more alcohol before intoxication is achieved
  • Driving under the influence
  • Frequently drinking to deal with stress
  • Putting your marriage, friendships, or job at risk as a result of alcohol-related behavior
  • Frequently drinking to excess at social gatherings

The new year can be a time to deal with addiction. Many people make resolutions, but dealing with this brain disease is not simply a matter of deciding not to use. “Long-term recovery from addiction requires treatment by professionals,” explains Dr. Philip Hemphill, Chief Clinical Officer at Lakeview Health. “Just as importantly, detoxing from drugs or alcohol without medical supervision is dangerous and can even be fatal. It is not a matter of having the will to go cold turkey. The body has developed a dependence on drugs or alcohol. The sudden absence of those substances can frequently cause extremely high blood pressure, seizures, and even cardiac arrest.”

For more information about addiction and safe recovery, visit

About Lakeview Health

Lakeview Health in Jacksonville is a leading provider of drug and alcohol rehabilitation services in northeast Florida and a nationally recognized addiction treatment center serving clients from across the country. Since it was founded in 2001, it has helped countless individuals and families begin their journey of recovery. Lakeview’s caring and committed staff is dedicated to helping clients and their families find their “True North.”