Corporate Wellness

Workplaces Need UR.Life OHC Substance Abuse Program: Here’s Why

We know that the busiest occupations come with stress, which increases the likelihood of substance usage and its consequences. Here's how URLife OHC can assist you with employee substance abuse.

By Namami
16 Feb 2023

Most, if not all of us are aware of the fact that substance abuse kills, after all, it is displayed prior to every movie in theatres. And it impacts organisations too. Employers can address drug prevention initiatives by creating an employee substance abuse policy in their workplace. Learning the warning indicators of Substance Use Disorder (SUD) and helping employees who exhibit such symptoms can improve overall workplace experience.

Due to societal stigmas, employees who abuse substances are hesitant to seek treatment. They deny the notion that they have issues or that addiction is impacting their quality of life. Managers that lack empathy may not act until a failed drug test prompts them to do so, and it can be too late by then.

According to the 2017 Global Burden of Disease (GBD) survey, illicit drugs are estimated to have killed nearly 7.5 lakh working people worldwide in 2017 alone. The estimated number of lives lost in India was 22,000. Therefore, leaders must play a critical role in rehabilitating employees struggling with addiction, by introducing internal policies, training managers to spot signs of employee substance abuse, directing employees to relevant resources, and taking action when workplace policies are violated.


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Recognising Warning Signs To Prevent Drug Abuse

According to a 2022 report by the World Health Organisation Report (WHO), 8.9 percent of the total burden of disease is due to the use of psychoactive substances: tobacco accounted for 4.1 per cent, alcohol 4 per cent, and illicit drugs 0.8 per cent. Substance abuse can develop due to acute intoxication, chronic usage or addiction to substances. As a result, it can cause decreased productivity in the workplace due to tardiness, excessive use of sick leaves, and decreased work quality. Warning signs include:

  • Shrinking pupils or bloodshot eyes

Anyone who is addicted to heroin usually has constricted pupils, also known as miosis or bloodshot eyes. Miosis is the extreme shrinkage of your pupil caused by frequent substance usage.


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  • Sudden weight loss

People who are addicted to cocaine, ecstasy or methamphetamine will undergo noticeable loss in their weight or appetite quickly.


  • Change in complexion

Repeated drug use can lead to acne, paleness and jaundice. There may also be scabs, scars, bruises and track marks on the body.


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  • Heavy usage of sweeteners

Yet another sign is constant use of breath sweeteners. Alcoholics or addictive smokers, particularly during the working day will use various sorts of breath mints to kill the smell.


Harmful Effects of Drug Abuse

The eight different types of substance abuse are alcohol, cannabis, opioids, sedatives, inhalants, cocaine, amphetamine stimulants, and hallucinogens. Each has harmful effects that can have both short-term and long-term consequences. The aftermath can also be induced by drug-related side effects. It could have an immediate or indirect effect such as:


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Impact of substance abuse at the workplace

According to a 2019 survey by the Ministry for Social Justice and Empowerment (India), more than 5.4 per cent of Indian workers suffer from drug addiction. Other factors that may lead to substance misuse at work include physically demanding taskload, high alcohol availability, isolated work, lack of supervision, low visibility at work, and high level of employee mobility during the workday.

Employee substance abuse at the workplace directly impacts:

  • Workplace productivity
  • Leaves and sick days
  • Number of injuries, accidents or mishaps happening
  • Employee turnover
  • Employee morale
  • Conflicts among employees with their supervisors


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UR.Life’s OHC Substance Abuse Cessation Program: How managers should encourage employees to prevent drug abuse

At Corporate Wellness, we help you to invest in your well-being through our seamless intervention medical programs of healthcare. Our holistic wellness approach caters to all aspects of your well-being. This ensures that you are able to withdraw from substance abuse and bring your whole self to work.

With UR.Life Corporate Wellness by your side, routine health check-ups, health talks with clients will never be an issue. UR.Life’s Occupation Health Centers (OHC) are backed by advanced laboratory technologies, and with highly qualified experts/technicians, we’re committed to delivering trusted health records always. Through URLife’s Substance Abuse Cessation Program managers will get to provide their employees with:

  • On-Demand Health Talks and Training for Managers
  • On-Demand Mental Health support for behavioural changes
  • Personalised Nutrition Plans for Better Health
  • Doctor on site
  • Stress Management and Counselling


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