If you need immediate help, please call 911 or the Military Crisis Line at 800-273-8255 and press 1

Alcohol & Substances

Military life is tough. Deployments, trainings, injuries and even stress at home can all take a toll on your mind and body. This causes some service members to turn to alcohol or other substances to “self-medicate.”

Using substances may feel like a temporary escape. But they can threaten your career, personal relationships and health. In fact, substance abuse can cause or worsen physical or psychological health concerns.

It is important to remember that substance abuse can be related to alcohol, prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, illegal drugs, or even tobacco. If you think you or someone you know needs help, talk to a health care provider right away. The following resources can help you learn more and connect with care.

Recommended Resources

The Role of Family and Loved Ones in Substance Misuse

Studies have shown a link between stressful life events and substance misuse in the military. Service members frequently experience stress due to situations like training, combat or multiple deployments. Service members who have experienced these events may turn to substances to help them find relief. This can include using alcohol, tobacco, or prescription and non-prescription drugs.