Why do I drink or use drugs?

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About This Tool

People use drugs or engage in risky behaviors because it helps them fill a void or meet a need that they’re not getting somewhere else. The void often leaves people feeling very empty—and feeling empty is hard to cope with. Do you feel empty in a way that makes you want to turn to drugs or risky behaviors? Where does it come from—maybe an experience or physical health condition? This worksheet helps explore some of those thoughts and feelings.

About the Creator

Mental Health America (MHA) – founded in 1909 – is the nation’s leading community-based nonprofit dedicated to addressing the needs of those living with mental illness and to promoting the overall mental health of all Americans. Our work is driven by our commitment to promote mental health as a critical part of overall wellness, including prevention services for all; early identification and intervention for those at risk; integrated care, services, and supports for those who need it; with recovery as the goal.

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Other Disclaimers

The information and exercises included are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with questions pertaining to your medical condition(s), treatment and care, and any other aspects relating to your health.

Contact for Questions or Concerns: [email protected]

Want to know more about how drugs and mental illness are related? Listen to this episode of Mental Health America’s podcast, In The Open.