September is National Recovery Month
National Recovery Month takes place in September and is an important time for us to acknowledge the number of people who are suffering from substance use disorders across North America and the rest of the world. There are approximately 20 million people across America suffering from different substance use disorders. Very few receive the treatment that they need due to lack of resources. It is imperative that we help as many people as possible gain access to treatment if they are ready to start the process of recovery.
How to Begin Treatment
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration says that someone has begun recovery when they start to address their personal life challenges without the use of substances, separate their own problems from others by creating personal boundaries and have some kind of support and way to restore their own energy. Recovery is very involved and requires a lot of bravery for a person to confront and accept their disorder. The most common substance use disorders in the United States at the moment are related to alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, stimulants, hallucinogens, and opioids. Alcohol use disorder outnumbers the others due to widespread access. You can also have multiple substance use disorders at the same time – which need to be tackled separately in order to fully recover. Substance use disorders are closely tied to mental health disorders; one often feeding from the other. In order to aid recovery everything must be addressed. It is important to make sure that someone who is struggling has several avenues of support. Medication, therapy and support groups are most often used together.
How to Help Those in Need
If you know someone who is struggling through a substance use disorder, there are many things that you can do to encourage them. You can suggest activities to do together, contact them on a regular basis and focus on the person, not the illness. Supporting someone else through their journey can be very difficult. It is important to take time and care for yourself. This not only keeps you from fatigue, but it also sets a good example for others. There are many different routes to combat mental health disorders and each patient is different. Find a therapist and or medication that work for your specific needs. Allowing yourself to find the help you need or reaching out to professionals are important first steps to recovery.
If you or someone you know is struggling with a behavioral health disorder please contact the professional team at Lifeline Connections. You can visit Lifelineconnections.org or call 360.397.8246 for more information.