Veterans face many challenges upon returning to civilian life. This includes mental health issues, difficulties transitioning to new careers, and financial stress.
Unfortunately, one of the most common problems they face is substance abuse. Substance abuse for veterans has become a significant issue in recent years. Statistics show that many former service members struggle with addiction to drugs or alcohol.
Why Do Veterans Struggle with Substance Abuse?
The reasons behind substance abuse for veterans are complex and multifaceted. Many veterans face physical and emotional trauma during their service. They may turn to drugs or alcohol as a way to cope with the memories and emotions associated with their experiences.
Additionally, the unique culture and camaraderie of military service can make it difficult for veterans to adjust to civilian life. This often leads to feelings of isolation and depression that can contribute to substance abuse.
How to Combat Substance Abuse for Veterans
Fortunately, there are many resources available to help veterans overcome their addictions and achieve lasting recovery. Some of these include therapy and medication-assisted treatment.
What to Expect from This Article
Whether you’re a veteran dealing with addiction or you’re a loved one looking for ways to support someone who is, this article will offer valuable insights and tools for achieving lasting wellness and sobriety.
What Is Substance Use Disorder (SUD)?
SUD vs. Substance Abuse
Substance abuse refers to the misuse or overuse of a substance leading to negative consequences. It is a pattern of use that goes beyond what is considered normal or socially acceptable. It may result in problems at work, school, or home, as well as physical or mental health issues.
Substance Abuse for Veterans
- Prescription drug abuse
- Illicit drug use
Effects of Substance Abuse on Veterans
- Various physical health issues
- Mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD
- Problems with relationships
- Financial difficulties
- Legal issues
How to Address Substance Abuse Among the Veteran Population
Why Do People Turn To Substance Abuse?
Stress and Anxiety
Mental Health Issues
- Lack of access to healthcare
- Exposure to drugs and alcohol
Curiosity and Experimentation
Availability and Accessibility
Important Note about Risk Factors
Why Are Veterans At Higher Risk Of Developing SUD?
Exposure to Traumatic Experiences
Many veterans have been exposed to traumatic experiences during their time in service. This can lead to the development of mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression. Substance abuse for veterans develops when they these substances as a coping mechanism.
High Levels of Stress
Accessibility of Prescription Drugs
Mental Health Issues
Lack of Social Support
Importance of Understanding Risk Factors
How Common Is Substance Abuse for Veterans?
Scope of Substance Misuse
Treatment Opportunities For Substance Abuse For Veterans
Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)
Residential Treatment Programs
Residential treatment programs provide a structured and supportive environment for veterans to focus on their recovery. These programs typically last 30-90 days. They may include individual and group therapy, medication management, and recreational activities.
Outpatient Treatment Programs
Veteran-Specific Treatment Programs
- Medical care
- Mental health services
- Housing assistance
- Job training
Veteran-Specific Resources For Substance Abuse For Veterans
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Substance Use Disorder Programs
Veterans Crisis Line
The Veterans Crisis Line is a confidential, toll-free hotline. It supports veterans in crisis, including those struggling with substance abuse.
The hotline is staffed by trained professionals who can provide crisis intervention and information. They can also offer referrals to VA and community-based resources.
Vet Center Substance Abuse Counseling
Military OneSource is a confidential, 24/7 resource for active-duty service members. It also serves National Guard and Reserve members, veterans, and their families.
The program provides a range of services, from counseling and referrals to substance abuse treatment programs.
Operation Live Well
Find Substance Abuse For Veterans Help At Rise Above Treatment
Why Rise Above Treatment?
Rise Above Treatment is home to some of the brightest minds in addiction treatment. Our team at Rise Above has been helping people start and maintain their recovery for decades.
We offer a range of treatment options that are patient-specific and designed to help you get better and live an addiction-free life.
Reach out to us today for more information about treatment for substance abuse for veterans. Let us help you begin your journey to recovery.
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Are you ready to Rise Above your mental health and addiction challenges?
Reach out to us today. Let us provide the support and guidance needed for sustainable recovery and wellness, allowing you to lead the happy, healthy, and fulfilling life you deserve.
- 4 https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323468#counseling-and-behavioral