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Guide to US & Canadian Addiction Hotlines

Posted on March 6, 2019

Guide to US & Canadian Addiction Hotlines

Rehab Recovery offers a free, 24/7 and confidential hotline for people seeking addiction treatment in the UK. However, we receive hundreds of inquiries from the US and Canada each week. To assist these people in seeking addiction treatment in their locality, we have put together this list of US and Canadian-based addiction hotlines.

This list of hotlines will assist both individuals seeking addiction treatment and their families. Seeking out the most suitable help for addiction is never easy. Knowing where to turn makes this task much simpler.

We now list five of these domestic abuse hotlines alphabetically. We hope you enjoy reading this post.

What is an addiction hotline?

An addiction hotline is a telephone number you may contact to gain free and impartial information concerning various types of treatment for substance misuse and addiction in general. Many people who answer these calls are themselves living in recovery, having won their own battle against addiction in the past. This means the people who dedicate their time to assisting others to know exactly what you or your loved one are currently going through.

When you contact one of these free addiction hotlines, you will receive free information and resource about treatment options in your area. This includes both outpatient and inpatient treatment options.

All of these hotlines are also willing to answer calls made by the individual sufferer’s family member. If your loved one is suffering from an addiction and you are unsure where to turn, these hotlines act as a useful first port of call. You will be advised about the signs and symptoms of addiction and you will also be informed about nearby treatment facilities.

Many of these hotlines are available 24-hours-a-day and 7-days-a-week for maximum convenience. Some are staffed with volunteers whilst others are operated by employees. When you contact these hotlines, you will be impressed by the level of information their advisors are able to pass on to you.

All calls to these hotlines are anonymous and there is no requirement to divulge your name or your address in order to access this valuable free information.

US-based Addiction hotlines

Below, we share with you the three most well-known addiction hotlines operating in the US:


Established in 1992, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is a Governmental agency within the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. SAMHSA leads public health efforts to advance the behavioural health in the USA. SAMHSA’s mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities.

SAMHSA’s national hotline can be contacted on 1-800-662-HELP (4357). This hotline offers information on addiction and free referral services in both the English and Spanish language 24 hours a day.

2. The Partnership for a Drug-Free America

Partnership for a Drug-Free America is the only national non-profit committed to supporting the whole family as they address every aspect of substance use and addiction, from prevention to recovery.

This drug hotline for parents may be contacted on 1-855-DRUG-FREE (378-4373) during business hours.

Canadian-based Addiction hotlines

Below, we share with you the three most well-known addiction hotlines operating in Canada:

1. Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse

The Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction address issues of substance use in Canada by providing national leadership and harnessing the power of evidence to generate coordinated action.

2. Health Canada is the Government of Canada’s digital presence. The goal of this site is to make it easier for Canadians to find and understand the Government of Canada’s information and services.

3. Connexontario

The Drug and Alcohol hotline provides information about drug and alcohol addiction services in Ontario. A helpful Information and Referral Specialist will answer your call, email or web chat 24/7. The service is free, confidential and anonymous.

4. Addictions treatment for First Nations and Inuit

First Nations communities with addiction challenges have access to two programs funded by the Government of Canada. These programs are the National Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Program (NNADAP) and the National Youth Solvent Abuse Program (NYSAP). Here, you can find information on NNADAP and NYSAP treatment programmes near you.

Why might you contact an addiction hotline?

The key reason you might contact an addiction hotline is to obtain immediate and accurate information from an experience hotline advisor. The information you gain will be tailored to you or your loved one’s precise circumstances. Much information you find online is too generic to be of use, and it’s unlikely you will locate information relating to the specific geographical area in which you currently live.

As well as gaining valuable information, you will also benefit from crisis support. If you are socially isolated, often a free hotline may be the only source of support you are able to receive at this particular point in time. Speaking to a hotline advisor will give you hope and make you realise there is a viable solution to your problems.

Below, we list some of the other benefits you gain by contacting an addiction hotline:

  • To gain advice concern the common symptoms and signs of addiction
  • To learn about the very real danger of substance misuse
  • To seek advice about drug overdose
  • To seek information about the location and suitability of local rehab clinics
  • To learn about the various forms of addiction treatment, such as inpatient and outpatient options
  • To learn about the clinics that accept healthcare insurance
  • To seek help for a loved one

We really believe contacting a free addiction hotline could help to save you or your loved one’s life. You have everything to gain and nothing to lose by contacting one of these hotlines. These hotlines are free and confidentiality is assured.

Can I get into trouble for contacting an addiction hotline?

The above may be a natural concern given many addictive substances are illegal. Even if you are not addicted to an illegal substance, you may still be concerned about contacting an addiction hotline due to concerns you could lose your job as a result.

Please allow us to put all of these concerns to rest because all of the above hotlines hold everything you say in the strictest of confidence. Many of the people who either work or volunteer at these free hotlines have themselves battled addiction in their own past. This means these people are utterly sympathetic to your current circumstances.

What may I expect when I contact an addiction hotline?

When you contact an addiction hotline, the hotline advisor may ask for basic information regarding your addiction. The advisor will also likely ask roughly where in the country you live and any physical or mental health concerns you are experiencing. This information helps the advisor better tailor and advise you on suitable treatment options.

Some of the questions the hotline advisor may ask you includes:

  • Is your situation life-threatening?
  • What specific substance(s) are you addicted to?
  • What duration have you been using these substances?
  • How frequently do you use these substances?
  • Do you suffer from co-existing mental health problems?
  • Do you suffer from physical health problems?
  • Are your family members or other loved-ones aware of your addiction?
  • Are you willing to begin a treatment programme?
  • Have you previously sought treatment in the past?

Once this information is attained, the advisor will provide you with treatment options. These options will help you in achieving your recovery goal.

If you live in the US or Canada and you or a loved one suffer from any form of addiction, do not suffer in silence. Given all of the above hotlines are free and 100% confidential, you truly have nothing to lose and everything to gain by making that magical first call. This call promises to assist you or your loved one into long term recovery.

How may I contact an addiction hotline?

Contacting a free addiction hotline could not be simpler. When you contact a hotline, you will be armed with support as well as free information and advice. This helps to secure your long-term journey to recovery from all forms of addiction.

Below, we outline a 3-step guide to contacting an addiction hotline:

  • Step 1: Decide on which particular hotline is most suitable for your needs. Do not be afraid to contact more than one hotline, because it’s likely each hotline will provide you with valuable support and information. If there is an emergency such as an overdose, contact the emergency services instead
  • Step 2: Brainstorm a list of questions you would like answering during the call. Try not to gain vital information in an ad lib fashion. Preparing questions before the call ensures you get the maximum benefit from making this all-important call. Also, preparing a list of questions will help you to maintain composure during the call. Talking about your addiction is a deeply personal matter, and so it’s easy to become upset or over-emotional if you do not fully prepare for the call
  • Step 3: Once your call is answered, try to remain composed. Take deep breaths and have a glass of water on hand. Sip this drink throughout the call so your voice does not seize up

Possible questions you may ask during the call

Brainstorming a bunch of questions to ask during the actual call is never easy. To take the hard work out of this task, we have prepared a number of questions below to help you get started. Try to think up further questions that are tailored to your specific circumstances, but please feel free to use the below questions as a starting point: <.p>

  • What inpatient/residential addiction treatment options are available in my local area?
  • Do I require a medically assisted detox? If so, how long will this likely require in days?
  • How much does rehab cost?
  • Do rehabs accept payment via medical insurance?
  • Am I eligible for free addiction resources in my local area?
  • How may I assist a family member who is suffering from an addiction?
  • I suffer from co-occurring mental health issues. Does this affect where I should undertake addiction treatment?

Some final thoughts

Addiction is a progressive disorder, so doing nothing will only serve to ensure you or your loved one’s condition worsens. Many of these hotlines are available 24/7 and 7 days a week, meaning you can reach out for help whenever the urge to do so arises.

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