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Alcohol and Drug Abuse Hotlines

Finding the right recovery center for drug or alcohol addiction can be difficult, but the right addiction recovery program for you is out there. This is where recovery helplines come in. Contacting a helpline is a brave first step in getting the help you need to live a life free of drugs and alcohol.

What Is a Drug or Alcohol Addiction Hotline?

A drug or alcohol addiction treatment hotline or helpline is a great way to connect with someone who has experience with addiction and related issues, and who can help you find rehab and recovery centers in your area. You can get information on treatment facilities, substance use, and additional addiction-related topics.1

Recovery.org is an American Addiction Centers Resource and can help you or a loved one find the treatment you need. If you are ready to learn more about your rehab and recovery options, contact our compassionate team of admissions navigators who are ready to help at .


Who Are Addiction Hotlines For?

Anyone struggling with substance misuse or addiction and wants help quitting can benefit from calling a substance abuse hotline.

Family members and loved ones can also call to find out more about addiction, addiction rehabilitation, and other addiction treatment options. Many alcohol and drug abuse helplines are available 24 hours a day and are staffed with caring and knowledgeable individuals who want to help, some of whom have personally experienced addiction recovery.

Calls are anonymous and no personal information is required. You will not be scolded, judged, or reprimanded for drug or alcohol use.


How to Prepare for a Call to Substance Abuse Hotline

Before you call a substance abuse hotline, have the following information ready:

  • Age of the person who needs treatment
  • Location
  • Substances they’re using
  • How long they’ve been using
  • Frequency of use/amounts
  • Physical and mental health conditions that may need additional support
  • Insurance information if a person has it

When calling, it’s helpful to be as honest as possible with the navigator so they can provide the most useful resources and treatment information. You might also want to prepare some questions of your own about addiction treatment and the recovery process.


Common Addiction Helpline Questions

Below are some of the commonly asked questions that alcohol and drug addiction helplines receive.

Am I addicted to drugs or alcohol?

Drug and alcohol addiction look different for each person, but there are certain signs that are common among people with substance use disorder, including:2,3

  • Spending a lot more time alone than normal.
  • Sleeping at odd hours.
  • Losing interest in their favorite activities.
  • An inability to stop using the substance.
  • Spending a lot of time in obtaining, using, or recovering from a substance.
  • Engaging in illegal activities to obtain substances.
  • Having trouble maintaining healthy relationships.
  • Neglecting responsibilities.
  • Experiencing an increased tolerance to the substance (needing more to experience the effects).
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms.

This list includes some of the signs of alcohol and drug addiction, but there are more. If you are concerned that you or a loved one is abusing drugs or alcohol, you can reach out to a helpline to speak to someone who can assist you.

What methods of addiction treatment are there?

There are various approaches to treating substance use disorders depending on the needs of the individual and level of care. These approaches include:4,5

  • Behavioral therapy helps the individual dealing with addiction by teaching them the skills they need to make important changes in their life. Therapy will help them learn why their thoughts and beliefs are influencing their addiction. It will also help them develop problem-solving skills to help them avoid substance abuse in the future.
  • 12-step programs can help many people continue their sobriety using fellowship, social support, and spirituality.
  • Motivational interviewing helps the recovering individual develop their own motivations to remain sober and create plans to stay away from drugs or alcohol.
  • Contingency management uses rewards to reinforce behavior, including staying drug and alcohol free.
  • Medication is useful in some cases to block the effects of drugs of use, relieve cravings, or alleviate withdrawal symptoms.
  • Alternative methods of treatment are also available, including holistic treatments, wilderness programs, art therapy, and equine therapy.

Addiction has its root in many places, and there are many treatment strategies that can help an individual achieve sobriety.

Why should I call a drug addiction helpline?

If you or someone you care about is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, calling an addiction helpline is an important step in the recovery process. There is no shame or harm in making the call whether it’s to ask a question or start treatment. It takes a great deal of strength to admit you have a problem and begin the recovery process.

You are not alone, and it is very important that you call to speak to a sympathetic, well-trained individual who knows what you’re going through right now and how it feels to finally make the leap.

This person can provide resources about rehab centers near you and information about other recovery services like support groups.



Additional Hotline Resources

This list includes hotline numbers that may provide you with the information and support you need. If you are facing an immediate crisis, please call 911.

  • Boys Town National Hotline
  • Crisis and resource line staffed by counselors to provide information about a variety of issues, including chemical dependency.
  • Covenant House Teen Hotline (NineLine)
  • General hotline for adolescents, teens and their families. Assistance with any kind of problem—including alcohol and drug use. Covenant House specializes in homeless and runaway youth.
  • Partnership for Drug-Free Kids
  • 1 (855) DRUG-FREE (378-4373)
  • While not a crisis line, this hotline provides information to parents about adolescent and teen drug use, prevention, and treatment.

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  1. National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. (n.d.). The Nation’s Number One Health Problem.
  2. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing.
  3. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2021). What Are the Signs of Having a Problem With Drugs?
  4. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2020). Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment: A Research-Based Guide (Third Edition): Behavioral Therapies.
  5. National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2019). Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction.