Pilots
help pilots

Addiction

The meaning of our AntiSkid programme is to get the hang of to addictions and to enable a pilot to do his job, furthermore. For achieving rapidly the return to work, the interconnection between in-patient and out-patient therapy offers have been proven. Within shortest given time, we could offer to the person affected a place for therapy in a cooperating clinic. The main target there is to create the pre-conditions, both medically and technically, to enable the person getting back in the seat as soon as possible.

As a rule- the person affected can go back to flight-duty directly after the stay in clinic and when a valid medical certificate was given back to him. The subsequent out-patient supervision with experienced therapists, will support the client to reinforce his abstinence and to reinforce his long-term work on his psychological burdens.

 

During the course of participation in the programme a peer from cockpit and AntiSkid Team is direct the client’s side. Experience showed, some questions regarding duty service and everyday life, can be solved and talked over in the best way among peers. And this applies to all airlines and do not depend on any hierarchies. In addition monthly group-meetings with other participants of the programme offer the opportunity to talk about the own case with also affected other peers. After a successful finish the client can always rely on that experience for a “flying” life time! Often a talk among close peers could help to face problems, which may raise again.

Dependence but no addiction

Due to that very unspecific meaning of “addiction”, the word was replaced to “substance use disorder” (as the like; nicotine, pills, drugs and alcohol). For the diagnosis “substance use disorder“ seven criterias are quoted. Three of those criteria must meet to get this diagnosis:

 

  1. Strong desire for consuming the substance (e.g. alcohol)
  2. Having difficulties to keep the stated resolutions regarding of how often, how much and in which kind the substance could be consumed (decrease of control capability)
  3. Having physical troubles during reduced consumption or on stopping consumption (withdrawal symptoms)
  4. Increasing of consumption without any increase in the effect of the substance (development of tolerance)
  5. Increasing in monotonous consumption (restricted pattern of consumption)
  6. Neglecting of being interested in others (e.g. family, friends, job and hobby)
  7. Continuing of consumption despite the knowledge of damages (of physical, psychological or social kind) which already have occured

Remarkable on this definition is the fact, that not all criteria have to be fulfilled to be stated as an addict. Neither the quantity of alcohol consumed nor the fact that a consumption of a substance has not to be executed daily, is mentioned in this definition.

The question is, which meaning does the substance have in the life of the person affected? Which standing does it have in his way of thinking, feeling and doing? Only with reflecting in a true and self-critical way the person affected can find out if he is addicted or not. Having this information given, only due to blood values or medical-psychological reports is not enough.

Alcohol- Facts and figures of alcohol addiction

 

  • For a huge number of people alcohol leads to severe problems in health.
  • More than 9,5 millions people are consuming alcohol in a health-risking way.
  • 1,77 million people are addicted to alcohol.
  • Current analysis stated that 74.000 people died of consumption of alcohol by itself or by consumption of alcohol and tobacco.
  • The cause of concern is given by an increase in average weekly consume among people between 12 - 17 years of age. The amount of pure alcohol, which they take in one year, has increased of 48 % during the last time.
  • In 2011, 26.349 children and teenager have consumed so much alcohol that they were needed to be treaten in a hospital.
  • The costs of diseases due to alcohol consumption are estimated on 26,7 billions of euro.
  • In 2012, 15.130 traffic accidents under influence of alcohol with personal injuries have been established. 19.321 people were affected and 338 died because of the accidents’ aftermath (Statistisches Bundesamt 2013).
  • In Germany, in every seven minutes, a human died because of the aftermath of alcohol consumption.
  • Problems with addictions means a lot of individual tragedy for the people affected but as well for their families.
  • An estimate said: every seventh child is suffering from the addicition of one or even both parents. This equals 2,5 millions children and teenager under 18 years of age.
  • According to WHO 3,3 million humans worldwide died on the aftermaths of alcohol consumption.

Source: Bundeszentrale für gesundheitliche Aufklärung (BZgA), Deutsche Hauptstelle für Suchtfragen (DHS), Statistisches Bundesamt

The key for successful healing is to recognize the addiction, early. A hint that you can get in addiction might be, the CAGE-Test. If two or more of those four questions are answered with YES, you should take care and think about of seeking professional help:

 

CAGE Test

Cut Down: Have you tried (unsuccessfully) to reduce your consumption of alcohol?
Annoyed: Did you get annoyed because your behaviour in drinking was criticized by others?
Guilty: Do you feel guilty because of your consumption?
Eye Opener: Have you used alcohol to get the day going in the mornings?

 

Good news are: especially in a pilot’s job a disease of addiction attracts attention very early! Restricted duty plans and rest periods do not allow to drink much alcohol. Additionally everybody knows that no alcohol is allowed, up to 12 hours the latest, before duty will begin. If a colleague couldn’t manage to get on duty soberly, this is a clear hint on a problem! The person affected is, however, in a stadium at the beginning and the chance of healing is very well.


Here it’s AntiSkid’s turn! With professional help of therapists, physicians, clinics and colleagues we tackle the problems with alcohol from many sides and at the same time. The desire for substances will be treatened and the peer has the opportunity –with support of AntiSkid- to raise social life once again. Therefore the colleagues affected will have the best chance for healing and to get back on the seat as soon as possible.