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If you’ve started to depend on alcohol or drugs to manage the transition from active duty, you should know that you’re not alone. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), over 10% of veterans struggle with a substance use disorder. Unfortunately, many don’t disclose their drug or alcohol addiction for fear of personal and professional repercussions, making it difficult for them to get help.
However, enrolling in rehab programs for veterans is the best decision you can make for your life after active duty. The veteran rehab program offered at Transformations Treatment Center and Transformations at Mending Fences has an integrated treatment model to help veterans with co-occurring post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance abuse disorders.
We’ve successfully treated military veterans whose lives have been affected by combat or lengthy, non-combat deployment. Our South Florida rehab centers are ready to help you successfully overcome your issues with drug and alcohol addiction.
Military veterans make up most of those affected by drug and alcohol use. Statistics show that alcohol abuse among male veterans is higher than among their civilian counterparts. Different factors contribute to high levels of drug use among veterans, and it’s essential to understand how those factors uniquely affect veterans and their loved ones.
Military life can be enriching, but it also comes with many challenges that can inflict lifelong trauma on service members. The Department of Veterans Affairs found that around 10% of male veterans and up to 19% of female veterans have been diagnosed with PTSD, which causes distressing thoughts, memories and flashbacks accompanied by physical symptoms such as excessive sweating, shivering and pain.
Participating in active combat is a leading cause of PTSD among service members. In a life-or-death situation, your brain works overtime to gather the information you can use to identify and survive threats. The brain interprets different stimuli as threats, inducing a fear reaction of fight or flight to spur you into action and help you find solutions to complex active combat situations.
Your brain keeps the memory of the different stimuli even after you return to safety, inducing the same fear reactions when it wrongly interprets similar stimuli in the future. For example, your brain may interpret the sound of your neighbor’s car backfiring as a gunshot, making you feel panic, fear and anxiety.
However, the brain mechanism that encourages these reactions can be impaired by frequent exposure to trauma, making it difficult for you to gain control over your fight-or-flight responses.
Another factor that causes PTSD in veterans, especially among the female population, is military sexual trauma (MST). Over 30% of female service members experience MST, which causes persisting trauma even years after the event.
Veterans often turn to drug abuse and alcohol to gain control over the memories and actions triggered by their past traumatic experiences. Consequently, around 20% of veterans with PTSD have substance abuse problems.
Over 65% of veterans deal with pain from injuries received during active duty, including wounds from burns, shrapnel, broken bones, and head and brain injuries. Studies show that over 24% of veterans use prescription medication for chronic pain, with a majority using prescription opioids such as oxycodone and hydrocodone.
Veterans’ mental health issues also lead to higher rates of prescription opioid use. Over 17% of veterans diagnosed with PTSD have an opioid prescription.
These physical and mental health issues contribute to higher levels of opioid dependency among veterans. As a result, opioid use disorder is responsible for 21% of overdose cases in the veteran population.
Military service members often experience unique financial challenges. Constant deployments affect their ability to nurture long-term investments, while the higher relocation rates make it difficult for spouses to keep steady employment. You may find it challenging to find a job matching your skills after active duty, leaving you and your dependents reliant on your savings, veterans benefits and credit cards. These financial constraints cause stress and anxiety, making you use alcohol and other drugs to cope.
Financial issues also cause over 30,000 veterans to experience homelessness each night. Unhoused individuals account for many people affected by mental health disorders and substance use disorders.
An active military career can strain your relationship with your romantic partner, children, relatives and friends. Moreover, mental health disorders such as PTSD can negatively affect the quality of your relationship with loved ones.
Close, continued proximity to your immediate family after getting discharged from the military can reveal cracks in your relationship, making transitioning from active duty more difficult. Because relationship problems can cause a lot of despair, many veterans turn to drugs such as nicotine, alcohol and marijuana to get through their days.
Veterans in Jupiter, Delray Beach, Hollywood and most of South Central Florida can receive addiction treatment for veterans at Transformations Treatment Center under the Help For Our Heroes program. Veterans and first responders designed the program to ensure it addresses all life aspects contributing to substance abuse and mental health issues among their population.
The factors behind veterans’ substance use disorder and mental health problems differ vastly from those of civilians. A mixed audience may not fully grasp what role the things you saw and did during active duty have on your PTSD and its triggers. Because the recovery process relies heavily on the social connections and support systems you develop, the inability to find people who can relate to your experiences may hinder your recovery journey.
Moreover, the perception civilians have of military personnel may make it difficult for you to open up fully. The fear of being judged or seen as weak can make you participate less in group therapy sessions and be unable to form close bonds with other people undergoing treatment.
Substance abuse treatment for veterans is the best option for a successful recovery process. Such programs offer an environment filled with people capable of understanding how your background affects your reality. You can speak openly with the veterans in your support group and form friendships that keep you accountable whether you’re undergoing inpatient or outpatient treatment.
When clients enter the Veterans Recovery Program, they can receive the following services:
Undergoing treatment at the right rehab center can make or break your recovery journey. The treatment facility you choose should be able to provide multiple treatment options on a long-term basis to address your issues with addiction fully.
Veterans’ addiction treatment options at Transformations Treatment Center include inpatient or residential treatment, partial hospitalization programs (PHPs) and intensive outpatient programs (IOPs).
Residential treatment is ideal at the beginning of your recovery journey. It allows you to undergo medically managed detoxification in a secure environment where a medical team helps you manage severe withdrawal symptoms. Inpatient treatment also lets you fully immerse yourself in various forms of therapy without external distractions.
The partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs slowly reintegrate you into society and let you practice the healthy coping skills you learned in your therapy sessions.
The team at Transformations Treatment Center is committed to helping the brave men and women who’ve selflessly devoted their lives to protecting and defending our freedom. We offer continued support through our alum program to ensure you lead a healthy, productive life free from drug and alcohol abuse long after treatment ends. Upon graduation, clients and our team put a plan in motion for stress management and improving physical, mental, and emotional wellness.
The high cost of rehab services is one reason many veterans don’t seek treatment for drug and alcohol abuse. Because we care more about your well-being than money, we’ve forged relationships with several insurance companies to ensure you can afford addiction treatment.
Companies such as Aetna, Blue Cross, Cigna and TRICARE are insurance providers that can help you pay for substance abuse treatment at Transformations Treatment Center. You can confirm which forms of treatment your insurance providers cover by contacting their customer service agents or reaching out to the professionals at Transformations Treatment Center to see if we take your insurance coverage.
Transformations Treatment Center’s renowned treatment programs for veterans are only a phone call away. Call us at (877) 204-1317 to get an expert’s opinion on programs you might benefit from and verify your insurance coverage to begin your journey on the road to recovery.
This video provides a general overview of community care for Veterans, including eligibility criteria, under the VA MISSION Act which was signed into law in June 2018.
This video provides an overview of the six new eligibility criteria for Veteran community care under the VA MISSION Act, which was signed into law in June 2018.