Extern is encouraging people to make the most of their Dry January efforts at cutting down on alcohol by continuing into a ‘Feelgood February’.

Extern, which supports thousands of people every year across NI through a range of alcohol and wellbeing programmes, says that many people who have successfully taken part in Dry January – in which participants cut down or eliminate alcohol from their daily consumption - revert to unhealthy or even harmful habits once February begins.

Some people may even be putting their health at risk by going back to consuming excess alcohol too swiftly. By continuing to cut down on their drinking and by adopting healthier daily habits during February people can expect to see a range of benefits including weight loss, lowered blood pressure and increased energy levels.

“Many people begin the new year with the best of intentions for leading a healthier lifestyle, but often by the end of January their willpower has dwindled or other priorities have presented themselves,” says Dianne McMullin, from Extern’s BDACTS service, which supports people with problem alcohol usage.

“While Dry January is a great way to focus on your alcohol intake, it is only by adopting a longer-term approach to reducing consumption that the real benefits can become apparent.”

Extern is offering access to a range of events and activities to help promote wellbeing, as well as signposting to other services which can support those hoping to tackle problem alcohol usage.

Diane said: “Quitting completely is often difficult for many people, given the social pressures we face in our lives, so it is important to find ways of supporting your journey through self-help mechanisms. We offer a range of free, easily accessible resources and activities to support people with leading a healthier lifestyle.”

For details of self-help resources and details of upcoming health and wellbeing events in your local communities, visit www.drugsandalcoholni.info