Serving in the military can make individuals more vulnerable to substance abuse. In fact, drug and alcohol abuse, major depression, and PTSD are more common among the veteran demographic than the general population. Injuries, traumatic experiences, long-term separation from loved ones, and other military-related stressors can all contribute to a person’s risk of addiction.
Many veterans to seek treatment for drug or alcohol addiction will find the most success from a rehab program that offers specialized services catered to veterans. These programs focus on the unique challenges that veterans face and provide the support needed to successfully overcome addiction.
The Unique Needs Of Veterans In An Alcohol And Drug Rehab Program
Veterans experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) at much higher rates than the general population. PTSD is a chronic and severe mental health disorder that can negatively impact a person’s life. Flashbacks, night terrors, anxiety, and depression are just a few of the symptoms of this condition.
Individuals with PTSD may be more prone to abuse substances as a way to self-medicate. Unfortunately, alcohol and drugs often exacerbate symptoms of PTSD rather than diminish them. If PTSD is left untreated, many people will continue to abuse substances regardless of any addiction help they may receive.
Additionally, veterans face unique challenges that other people may not be exposed to. Transitioning back into civilian life after serving in the military can be especially difficult. Finding a steady job, housing, and a community can be stressful upon returning home from active duty. Financial problems and marital difficulties may also play a role in a veteran’s life after service.
All of these factors can contribute to a person’s drug or alcohol addiction. That’s why many rehab centers that offer treatment programs for veterans focus on these specific challenges that are unique to veterans. A successful addiction program for veterans treats not only the addiction but the stressors and mental health conditions that most commonly affect veterans.
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Benefits Of An Addiction Treatment Program For Veterans
Attending a treatment program specific to veterans can provide a number of benefits. Veteran-oriented rehab facilities often have medical professionals and staff who understand the challenges that veterans face in addiction and recovery. This can help patients feel more comfortable and understood.
Other benefits that an alcohol and drug rehab program for veterans can provide include:
- the ability to learn coping skills that are specific to issues faced by veterans
- the opportunity to form lasting relationships with other veterans in recovery
- programs that address specific challenges veterans face in recovery that may not be addressed in more traditional programs
- support groups where veterans can share their experiences
- a comfortable and compassionate environment that fosters growth and recovery
These benefits can help improve a veteran’s experience in a rehab program and increase the chances that he or she will successfully complete an addiction program.
Types Of Treatment Offered In An Alcohol And Drug Rehab For Veterans
Treatment programs catered to veterans often offer a number of different therapies and treatment types to meet the needs of each individual. Programs will likely provide customized recovery plans for each patient.
Treatment options that may be offered in an alcohol and drug rehab program for veterans include:
- Education And Career Counseling — Individuals who served in the military may struggle to pursue a career once they have been discharged. Education and career counseling can help prepare people for finding and starting a new job as well as how to manage a career in sobriety.
- Individual And Family Counseling — Counseling is often an important part of an addiction treatment program. Counseling can help veterans identify and cope with potential triggers as well as address the unique challenges they may face in sobriety.
- Dual Diagnosis Treatment — Many veterans experience mental health conditions like PTSD in addition to addiction. Treating co-occurring disorders simultaneously is the best and most successful way for individuals to make a full and lasting recovery.
- Support Groups — Meeting with other people who have experienced similar circumstances can help veterans in recovery.
- Behavioral Therapy — Behavioral therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing, and dialectical behavior therapy are commonly used in treatment programs for veterans.
Treatment programs for veterans may also offer alternative forms of therapy as well. Alternative therapies may include acupuncture, massage therapy, and adventure therapy. Physical activity is also often incorporated into a program of recovery.
Finding An Alcohol And Drug Rehab Program For Veterans
If you are a veteran and are looking to overcome an addiction to drugs or alcohol, there are several options available. Many treatment centers, including the Vertava Health facilities, offer customized programs of recovery to help veterans reclaim their lives in sobriety.
To learn more about alcohol and drug rehab programs for veterans, contact a Vertava Health treatment specialist today.