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December is National National Drunk and Drugged Driving Awareness Month

December is National 3D Month or National Drunk and Drugged Driving Awareness Month, which stemmed from MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), and the mission statement expanded to include drug-impaired driving. This particular month was selected due to the spike in traffic-related deaths between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day.

At the beginning of this year’s holiday shopping, there was a decrease in online purchases and an increase in face-to-face purchases, which reflects that many people are interested in being around others verses than being online. It can also be an educated guess that there is probably an increase in social gatherings with the options of drinking or using drugs since social groups or anything face-to-face was not encouraged last year.

North Carolina is one of the eighteen states that adopted the standard; if any detectable amount of controlled substance is found in a driver’s system, other than legally prescribed medicine, the driver will be charged with drugged driving. Compared to drunk driving, drivers are allowed a small amount of alcohol in their system and can still drive.

Anxiety, depression, PTSD, conduct disorder, anti-social personality disorder, and stress are some factors that may contribute to drunk and drugged driving.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a short-term, solution-oriented approach to help identify negative thoughts/behaviors and replace them with positive thoughts/behaviors. Motivational Interviewing is also a brief-client-centered approach concentrating on improving and strengthening a client’s motivation for change. This specific technique is selected when someone is less motivated or ready for a change in parallel with other therapy modalities.

The engagement of these two common modalities can help someone make better choices to avoid drunk and drugged driving.