With a national, alcohol-centric sporting event following a string of back-to-back holidays, it doesn’t come as a shock that industry leaders are saying the days after Super Bowl Sunday are “active” for calls to treatment facilities. But just how active are we talking about?
Brad Sylvain, admissions director for Origins Behavioral HealthCare, says that the center's call volume typically spikes to 40 percent or higher than then the average amount.
"For many addicts, it's a time when their behavior reaches a breaking point,” says Origins’ CEO Drew Rothermel. “Family and friends recognize that a problem exists and begin to seek help."
In fact, he adds, Origins’ records indicate that these call patterns continue through February and March—months with other drinking-based holidays like Mardi Gras and St. Patrick’s Day—until after Easter in April.
Origins spokesperson, Tami Brehse, says call volume is a direct indicator of who is seeking help and when, and is more accurate than measuring when admissions actually take place.
“Actual matriculation to admission can depend on so many factors,” she says. “For example, the person realizes they need help and call today but don't actually commit to checking in until a month from now.”
Figuring out finances and insurance can also take time, she says, and other variables may come into play that lead individuals to seek help elsewhere.
According to a study supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, at-risk male drinkers reported greater alcohol consumption on Super Bowl Sunday than a typical Saturday, which is on average the heaviest drinking day of the week.