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Holidays hard for addicts

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The holidays can be a stressful time for everyone, but one substance abuse counselor says it's particularly difficult for recovering addicts. Often it's the stress, and availability of drugs or alcohol at parties that challenge the recovery process. Substance abuse experts say it doesn't have to be that way. Creating new traditions can help people stay sober. Substance abuse counselor Joanne Likens said, "We can do lots of things that don't have anything to do with drinking or drug use: visiting someone in a nursing home, baking cookies or making coupons to give people that give of your time." Likens also says if you're a recovering alcoholic, and headed to a Christmas party, bring your own non-alcoholic beverages. In order to help recovering addicts stay sober, many area AA and narcotics anonymous organizations meet all day on Christmas.

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