Dry January – January 2023

Dry January, as the name suggests, is celebrated in January every year. This month of avoiding alcohol is a public health campaign that is practiced across America and European countries. Dry January aims to encourage people to stop drinking anything alcoholic for a month and aims for people to be more aware of their drinking habits, manage their alcohol consumption, and develop a healthier relationship with it. Many people around the world choose to observe Dry January for health reasons, to manage their drinking habits, reset their drinking, and feel more in control of their alcohol intake.

History of Dry January

While the name “Dry January” is fairly recent, the idea of setting a month aside to abstain from alcohol has been around as far back as the 1940s. At the time, the Finnish government introduced “Sober January” as part of the country’s war efforts.

Dry January does not aim to encourage teetotalism, which is the total personal abstinence from alcoholic beverages. The campaign only lasts a month, and while a small percentage of people stay abstinent, most participants return to drinking after the month. However, the majority of participants find themselves able to manage their drinking better after a month of abstinence.

While alcohol does play an important social role in many cultures across the world, it is a depressant that acts like a drug. In small quantities, it reduces anxiety and makes it easy for people to socialize. However, as the body adjusts to the alcohol, larger quantities are required to produce the same effect. In larger quantities, alcohol can cause alcohol poisoning, unconsciousness, and even death. Most people resort to harmful drinking episodes during difficult life periods, and this drinking is exacerbated if they already have an established drinking habit.

For those who recognize that their drinking habit is veering into the territory of being harmful and out of control, Dry January is an excellent opportunity to reset their drinking habits. During this month people can see how their lives can be without alcohol and take the time to build healthier coping mechanisms for day-to-day difficulties and celebrations. This empowers them to reserve their drinking for occasions and reign in the desire for a drink when situations become difficult to process.

Dry January timeline

1942
The Finnish Introduce Sober January

As part of their war effort, the Finnish government introduces the idea of ‘Sober January.’

2010
Nicole Brodeur Writes About Dry January

A writer at the Seattle Times, Brodeur writes an article and uses the term ‘Dry January,’ which gains popularity.

2014
Dry January Gets Trademarked

A charity called Alcohol Concern based in the U.K. registers Dry January as a trademark.

2015
Alcohol Concern Works With Public Health England

The Dry January campaign becomes a part of the government’s official health program, and Alcohol Concern works with Public Health England to promote the campaign.

Dry January FAQs

Is Dry January a good idea?

Yes, because Dry January helps you drink healthier all year.

Does Dry January help the liver?

Yes. A month of no drinking can help reduce alcohol-induced inflammation of the liver.

Does a month off from alcohol really help?

People report being able to manage their alcohol intake better after a month without it and drink less in the long term.

How to Observe Dry January

  1. Give away all your alcohol

    You cannot drink if you do not have any alcohol! One of the easiest ways to participate in Dry January is to give away your alcohol or use whatever is left in your cooking before January.

  2. Find a great overnight cafè

    When you head out to a pub, you are just looking for a place to socialize, which happens to have alcohol. Pick out a great overnight cafè that you can hang out at and you will get rid of temptation.

  3. Tell everyone you know

    You cannot build a habit without help. Let everyone you hang out with know that you are abstaining and accept their support and encouragement.

5 Facts About Dry January That Will Surprise You

  1. In the beginning, 17,000 people participated

    17,000 Britons participated in Alcohol Concern’s first campaign in 2014.

  2. Some countries have Dry February

    In countries like the Czech Republic and Canada, the campaign is for Dry February instead of Dry January.

  3. 4% of people stopped drinking altogether

    In a study conducted by the University of Sussex, the researchers found that 4% of people were able to stay abstinent even after Dry January was over.

  4. The number of participants is increasing

    In America, the number of adults participating in the campaign in 2021 was 13%, a step up from 11% of the years before.

  5. Dry January was launched in Switzerland

    In 2021, a coalition of non-governmental organizations came together to organize the campaign for Dry January in Switzerland, including Blue Cross Switzerland.

Why Dry January is Important

  1. We want to be healthier

    We all know that drinking too much is not the greatest idea. We think that abstinence for a short time is a great way to get healthier.

  2. We need a break

    The holidays are a busy time for socializing, eating, and drinking. We need a break from the rich food, people, and the large quantities of alcohol!

  3. We want to be more aware

    We do not want to drink indiscriminately. We want to be conscious of how much we drink, and when we drink. This allows for better control.

Dry January dates

YearDateDay
2022January 1Saturday
2023January 1Sunday
2024January 1Monday
2025January 1Wednesday
2026January 1Thursday
Celebration of Life Week
Diet Resolution Week
Apple Gifting Day
Commitment Day
Copyright Law Day
Ellis Island Day
Euro Day
Global Family Day
International Public Domain Day
National Bloody Mary Day
National First-Foot Day
National Hangover Day
New Year's Day
New Year’s Dishonor List Day
Polar Bear Plunge Day
Public Domain Day
Rose Bowl Game
Solemnity of Mary
Triumph of the Revolution
Universal Hour of Peace
World Day of Peace
Z Day
Artichoke and Asparagus Month
Be Kind To Food Servers Month
Bread Machine Baking Month
California Dried Plum Digestive Month
California Restaurant Month
Celebration Of Life Month
Cervical Health Awareness Month
Clap 4 Health Month
Dry January
Family Fit Lifestyle Month
Financial Wellness Month
Get A Balanced Life Month
Get Organized Month
Ginuary
International Brain Teaser Month
International Child-Centered Divorce Month
International Creativity Month
International Quality of Life Month
International Wayfinding Month
Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month
Manuary
National Bath Safety Month
National Birth Defects Prevention Month
National Blood Donor Month
National Book Blitz Month
National Braille Literacy Month
National CBD Month
National Clean Up Your Computer Month
National Codependency Awareness Month
National Eye Care Month
National Fiber Focus Month
National Glaucoma Awareness Month
National Hobby Month
National Hot Tea Month
National Mail Order Gardening Month
National Meat Month
National Mentoring Month
National Oatmeal Month
National Polka Music Month
National Poverty in America Awareness Month
National Radon Action Month
National Skating Month
National Slow Cooking Month
National Soup Month
National Stalking Awareness Month
National Staying Healthy Month
National Sunday Supper Month
National Thank You Month
National Train Your Dog Month
National Volunteer Blood Donor Month
Poverty Awareness Month
Prune Breakfast Month
Rising Star Month
Self-Love Month
Shape Up US Month
Teen Driving Awareness Month
Thyroid Awareness Month
Unchain a Dog Month
Walk Your Dog Month
Poppy’s birthday

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