THERAPISTS have begged people to ask for help with addiction as a rehab centre admitted more addicts than the previous four years.

Sanctuary Lodge in Halstead has revealed its treatment admissions for last year were the highest since 2017.

Public Health England also revealed its highest ever alcohol and drug death tolls across the region.

Data shows that Sanctuary Lodge, run by the UK Addiction Treatment Group admitted 438 clients into its residential rehabilitation facility.

In the last four years, admissions have increased by 15 per cent, from when 378 addicts checked in to the rehab in 2017.

Last year, addicts in England admitted into rehab for addictions for alcohol and drugs, to behavioural disorders like gambling and sex addiction.

The number of check-ins last year raised to 437, up 11 per cent from 394 in 2020, when the Covid-19 pandemic began.

Therapists warned that the Government’s ‘stay home’ message would intensify the addiction crisis.

Consultant tenant lead for Sanctuary Lodge Nuno Albuquerque said: “We said all throughout 2020 that although the pandemic was frightening and uncertain, one thing remained unchanged; that addiction would not stop, and that if those who were struggling then didn’t get access to the help they needed, their situation would ultimately worsen.

“We’re seeing off the chart calls for help from people whose lives have been turned upside down by addiction, which is why we’re admitting more people than ever before.”

Public Health England data also shows that since 2017, alcohol-related mortality rates across the East have risen from 1,956 in 2017 to 2,048 in 2020, up five per cent.

Drug related death data for the region shows a 22 per cent rise, from 318 drug poisoning deaths in 2017 to 386 recorded in 2020.

Nuno Albuquerque said: “It saddens us to know that mothers, fathers, grandparents, neighbours and friends lose their lives to addiction when there is help available that could save them.

“More people than ever lost their lives to drugs and alcohol in 2020, but thankfully, we’re seeing more people than ever now asking for help.

“If you or your loved one is struggling with addiction, we are here. Get in touch.”

A free 24/7 confidential live chat service for help and support with addiction is available on the Sanctuary Lodge website.