Drug and alcohol support and your mental health

When you access one of our drug and alcohol services, we're very mindful of your mental health. Here's how we will support you.

A smiling woman with a lanyard sits at a table holding a coffee mug, with informational pamphlets and a whiteboard visible in the background.

The connection between substance use and mental health

Substance use and mental health are closely connected, with one very much impacting upon the other. 

We understand that drugs and alcohol are often used as a coping mechanism for underlying mental health issues. In some cases, they are used to help cope with trauma that a person has experienced at some point in their lives. 

When you access one of our services for support with your drug or alcohol use, we are incredibly mindful of your mental health. This is both in regards to how drugs or alcohol can impact your mental health, as well as how the experience of accessing support itself can heighten levels of anxiety or bring up difficult feelings.

We want to reassure you that whatever your situation, we’re here to support you and make you feel as comfortable as possible throughout your treatment experience. 

We’ve detailed below some of the ways we do this when you access one of our drug and alcohol services. 

Supporting your mental wellbeing

We know that some people find coming to an appointment difficult and worrying. To help with this, we offer lots of ways for you to connect with us, so that we can make you feel comfortable. 

You are welcome to come to our buildings, but we can also meet you in a community location, or carry out your appointments remotely through digital access. 

If you want, you can bring a friend or family member to your appointments with you.

The assessment process involves asking you some questions about your lifestyle and personal situation but it's important that you feel in control - if there is anything you find particularly difficult to talk about, please let us know. We only need enough information from you to help you decide the best treatment programme for you.

If there is some information that you want to give us but you find it difficult to talk about, you can put us in touch with a person who can share the information on your behalf, such as a family member or another agency. You can also write the information down and share it with us that way - whatever feels most comfortable for you. 

If you are accessing support from us then you will have the opportunity to access interventions which are focused on improving mental wellbeing. 

This includes interventions which aim to improve sleep, exercise, diet and nutrition, and address lower levels of depression and anxiety. 

If you require more specialist support for your mental health then we can help you identify the type of support you might need and the provider who delivers this support in your local area. 

This includes not for profit organisations such as Mind, as well as organisations who provide talking therapies - which are often accessed through your GP, and specialist units. 

We work closely with mental health providers so that the treatment you receive for your mental health and your substance misuse works effectively together. With your consent, we can share information and progress updates with your mental health provider and can carry out joint appointments if you prefer, to help reduce the number of appointments you need to attend.

Find a drug and alcohol support service near you

Looking for support?

Contact one of our 80 local services across England and Scotland for free, confidential support and advice.

Not ready for an in-person service? Chat to one of our trained recovery workers online to get free, confidential advice and information.

Talk to a trained recovery worker

1-2 miles - Considered within walking distance threshold, however, cycling, public transport, or a personal vehicle is advised if no safe walking routes.
10-15 miles - Generally between a minimum of 30 mins to 1 hour travel time expected via public transport or personal vehicle. This may depend on form of transport, time of day and/or road layouts.
20-25 miles - Generally between a minimum of 50 minutes to 1.5 hours travel time expected via public transport or personal vehicle. This may depend on form of transport, time of travel and/or road layouts