David McCartney: Take a LEAP to recovery

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A Leap year is a time of great opportunity and hope. For example, there’s the tradition that woman can propose on a leap year.

The list of opportunities afforded by having an extra day in the year is endless.

For those suffering with an addiction, Wednesday was an extra day to drink or take drugs even though many will desperately want to stop. Most will not be able to do that on their own and may even be bewildered by how to stop.

That is where the Lothians & Edinburgh Abstinence Programme (LEAP) can help. The team treat many people who because of repeated failed attempts may have very little hope left that things can get better.

But there is always hope for recovery. Evidence tells us that it is easier to make the recovery journey with help. Treatment works to help people move on and you can ask your GP for details.

Recovery is something much more easily done in the company of others. Getting connected to mutual aid groups like Alcoholics Anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, SMART Recovery or the Serenity Café greatly increases your opportunity for success. There are over 100 self-help meetings every week in Lothian. They are full of recovering people and you can find out more about them online.

A leap year is a great time to launch a journey that may transform your life. We see it happen all the time in our service and the journey begins with a little bit of hope. Why don’t you take a leap and go for it?

Dr David McCartney is cinical lead for LEAP