Typically, after men and women’s honorable tours on duty, they can have a difficult time readjusting back to normal life. This transition from war-time living back to normal life can be difficult. The psychological and physical trauma veterans endure during their acts of service causes many to turn to drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism, later forming an addiction.
Why Does Addiction Affect Veterans?
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), members of the military have a higher rate of anxiety, chronic pain, combat stress, depression, homelessness, lack of sleep, relationship problems, and stress. This causes members of the military to have a higher rate of drug abuse than civilians.
The Relationship Between Veterans, PTSD, and Substance Abuse
Another major factor that causes military members to be at such a higher probability of drug abuse is PTSD.
What is PTSD? PTSD, post-traumatic stress disorder, is combat fatigue or shell shock. PTSD is not limited to military members–it can also appear in those who have gone through sexual assault, natural disasters, and other traumatic events in their lives.
Military members tend to be more exposed to many harsh environments and situations causing higher levels of trauma and PTSD. When members of the military get help for their PTSD, they are often prescribed addictive drugs for coping leading them into addiction. After taking the sedatives and painkillers that military veterans are often prescribed for the emotional and physical trauma they endure, many become dependent on these drugs.
Signs of becoming addicted to these substances include; poor performance at work, social dysfunction, strong cravings, inability to cultivate or maintain relationships, lack of energy or motivation, self-destructive behaviors, and low self-esteem.
Finding Drug and Alcohol Rehab Services for Veterans
Due to the thousands of military members struggling with drug and alcohol dependence, there are many resources for this issue. The United States Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) also offers benefits for veterans. VA covers the cost of alcohol or drug rehabilitation. Veterans can get in touch with a VA healthcare provider or the nearest veterans rehab center. There is also a hotline (1-844-MyVA311 or 1-844-698-2311).
Some of the services offered by the VA include:
- Screening that helps determine the kind of rehabilitation and other treatment services needed
- Inpatient or residential care for those who need intensive treatment
- Outpatient rehabilitation and counseling
- After-rehab care, including access to support groups, as well as livelihood assistance
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Family therapy
- Medications for withdrawal, if needed
- Chiropractic care for physical trauma and injuries
Speak With an Addiction Specialist at Moving Mountains Recovery Center
The team at Moving Mountains Recovery Center is dedicated to helping you and your loved ones find the treatment they need and deserve. Whether you need dual diagnosis treatment or rehab for Veterans, we’re here, equipped with the resources you need. Please call now to speak with a qualified admissions coordinator.