Alcohol, Drugs and Smoking

As a young person, you’re often faced with difficult decisions when it comes to alcohol, drugs and smoking. You might want to experiment. Maybe your friends are pressuring you to try it. Perhaps you’re worried that a family member or friend is becoming addicted. You might want support to quit or you just want more information about it.

TheSprout is here to help by showing you all the advice, information and support services out there in Wales.

National Services

SchoolBeat – SchoolBeat has information and resources for teachers, pupils and parents to follow up on lessons given in schools by the School Community Police Officers. There are activities for children and young people about drug and substance misuse, social behaviour and community and personal safety grouped into different age brackets (5-7, 7-11, 11-14 and 14-16).

Alcohol Change UK  – Working to change attitudes towards alcohol by improving knowledge about the harms of alcohol, calling for better policy and regulation, changing social norms, improving drinking behaviour and working with organisations and practitioners to find better support and treatment. There lots of information on the website including quizzes about your drinking, tips on how to cut down and how to find help for you or your family/friends.

DAN 24/7 – Wales Drug and Alcohol Helpline – A free and bilingual telephone drug and alcohol helpline providing a single point of contact for anyone in Wales wanting further information or help relating to drugs or alcohol. Freephone: 0808 808 2234 or text DAN to: 81066

Help Me Quit-The free NHS stop smoking service in Wales. They have loads of information on all the NHS stop smoking services and a contact centre that makes it easier for smokers to choose the best support for them. Freephone: 0808 2506885

ASH Wales – Their mission is to achieve a smoke free Wales by working to toughen up policies and campaigning across Wales. They raise awareness of the health, social and economic effects of smoking by working with communities, young people and partners in Wales. .

Young Minds – Information about how drug use can have an effect on your mental health and where to get help and information.

Re-Solv – Working to end solvent abuse (gases, solvents and other legal highs). Information, advice to reduce harm and confidential help. Helpline: 01758 810762, Monday to Friday 9:30am-5pm. Text or WhatsApp – 07496 959930. Live chat.

Drinkaware – Working to reduce alcohol misuse and harm and help people make better choices. Facts, advice, trackers and calculators for those who are worried about their own drinking or worried about someone else. They also have Drinkline and Drinkchat that you can contact confidentially and free for information and advice about your own drinking, or someone else’s. Helpline: 0300 123 1110 Monday-Friday 9am-8pm, Saturday and Sunday 11am-4pm.

Alcoholics Anonymous – A group of people sharing their experiences, strength and hope with each other to stop drinking and stay sober. Find a meeting in Cardiff. National Helpline: 0800 9177 650.

Al-Anon – Al-Anon Family Groups supports anyone whose life is, or has been affected by someone else’s drinking. They don’t offer advice or counselling, but hold regular meetings for people to share their experiences of living with alcoholism and support each other. Find a meeting in Cardiff.

Talk to Frank – Talk to Frank offers friendly, confidential drugs advice. They have an A-Z glossary of drugs on their website listing the key effects and risks and the law for each one. They also have videos, stories, articles and a helpline. Helpline: 0300 123 6600 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Live chat – 2-6pm daily. Text 82111

Dear Albert – Helping people to stop taking alcohol and drugs. Founded by John Roberts following recovery from his own addictions, a service claiming to have ‘been there, done that’. Helpline: 0800 880 3153. Text: 07712 707 999

E-DAS (Entry into Drug and Alcohol Services) – A service to help anyone who thinks they have an issue with alcohol or substances. Deciding the best pathways for you to get the help you need and helping you to access substance misuse services. Call: 0300 300 7000

Chat Health – If you’re 11-19 years old you can text your school nurse on 07520 615718 between 8:30am and 4:30pm weekdays for confidential advice and support on all kinds of things including smoking, drugs and alcohol.

Recovery Cymru – A community of people helping each other to recover from drug or alcohol misuse. Developing skills and interests and improve your quality of life.

Platfform (NewLink Wales) – Running courses and projects for those that have struggled with substance use or other wellbeing challenges in the past, working with people to find a new sense of purpose, new skills, or renewed confidence.

Mind – Mind Cymru offers advice and support to anyone experiencing a mental health problem. Drug and alcohol addiction is often linked to mental health problems. They have an addiction and dependency section with information on where you can find support.

Meic – An advocacy and helpline service to support you whilst you are in care and to help you to deal with any problems you might be having. Contact Meic daily from 8AM – Midnight on: Freephone (080880 23456), Text (84001) or Instant Message.

Useful Apps

Drinkaware: Track and Calculate Units App – Change the way you drink. Track the units and calories in drinks and the savings you make.

Pocket Rehab: Get Sober and Addiction Recovery – Connect with other people trying to overcome addictions. A community of peers helps each other through text, voice or video at the touch of a button.

Smoke Free – An app to learn techniques to stop, see how much money you’ve saved, how long you’ve been smoke free, how many cigarettes you’ve not smoked and watch how your health is improving.

I Am Sober: Motivation for Tracking Sobriety – Counts the days you’re free from drugs, alcohol or smoking addiction. Sends you daily reminders of why you quit and motivational quotes.

Blogs and guides

5 Steps Towards Addiction Recovery You Should Know – Our Young Addicts

10 Self Help Tips To Quit Smoking – NHS

Benefits of Stopping Smoking – NHS

Am I Alcohol Dependent? – Drinkaware

My Lifetime Hangover – theSprout


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