The law profession, beyond its prestige, is a sedentary profession that can be psychologically and emotionally sapping. Found among lawyers are significant levels of anxiety, stress, and depression arising out of the pressure to keep up with the high demands of the legal profession.

Hence, some lawyers have turned to drugs and other substances such as caffeine, steroids, or nicotine to help them relax and be more productive.

To prevent addiction among lawyers, below are some health tips:

1. Set healthy limits: The emotional involvement of lawyers can often make them forget to live healthily. As a lawyer, you tend to deprive yourself of sleep or get anxious over the problems of your client that you may eventually develop depression and high blood pressure. In handling legal matters, be wise enough to separate your personal life from client matters. Set time limits.  

2. Exercise: Always take time to exercise no matter how impossible it may seem because lack of exercise could gradually kill your body and mind. Exercise is a healthy way to relieve the stress that comes with the legal profession.

3. Socialize: To prevent addiction as a lawyer, you could develop the habit of socializing by spending time with people, especially those you love. You could also build close relationships with your colleagues at work who would check on you often and whom you can hang out with during times of high stress.

4. Sleep: Sleep has its way of relaxing the mind so, you should not be deficient in sleep if you aim to prevent addiction as a lawyer.

The importance of your health as a lawyer cannot be over-emphasized as your health status affects your level of productivity. Keep your mind healthy by learning to forgive yourself when you make mistakes and not pressure yourself to always attain perfection.

How Lawyers can prevent addiction in their cycle

An American Bar Association study from 2016 showed that 20.6 percent of lawyers reported problems with drinking. Other research from the Canadian Bar Association estimates that alcohol addiction rates among lawyers range between 15 and 24 percent.

Prescription drugs and illicit drugs are also a problem for many lawyers. They utilize substances like cocaine, OxyContin, and Valium to achieve a competitive edge, prevent stress, or cope with mental health disorders.

Many lawyers who suffer from substance use disorders sacrifice their health to accomplish their work goals. In addition, family and social relationships may be affected.

Lawyers tend to be good at dominating conversations, meetings, and relationships. The skill they have at diverting attention away from themselves makes it more challenging to convince them to obtain treatment for their substance use disorder.

If you are an attorney who is struggling with a substance use disorder, there are ways to recover from this disease and save your career. Professionals in high-demand professions are catered to by many rehab treatment facilities that offer specialized programs.

To reduce substance abuse, attorneys and law firms need to take reasonable steps. Taking proactive steps to address addiction can prevent lawyers from developing addiction problems in the future. A few of these steps are:

Managing Stress

Attorneys are vulnerable to mental health disorders due to stress, a common element in substance abuse. The stress level of attorneys can be reduced significantly by properly training them on how to manage their time and clients. Counseling and peer support can be helpful for attorneys suffering from severe stress. Working fewer hours can reduce stress as well.

Policy and Attitude Changes towards Drinking in the Workplace

Lawyers are often surrounded by an environment that encourages substance abuse, especially alcohol abuse. Young lawyers are most at risk of developing alcohol dependence, according to a study by the American Bar Association in 2016. The study reported that 31.9% of lawyers 30 or younger took part in problematic drinking.

Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease study’s authors suggest law firms can address this issue by implementing formal policies for handling substance abuse in the workplace. Researchers found that preventing permissive attitudes towards substance abuse at work can be effectively prevented through team-based interventions.