For military veterans and active duty members, seeking help for issues like addiction isn’t always easy. However, too many veterans suffer from physical and mental health consequences when they do not receive treatment. This is why it is so important for you to consider military alcohol rehab.
But what is military alcohol rehab? What does treatment look like? You might even be wondering if you need a military alcohol rehab in the first place. Rest assured: we have the answers to all of your questions below, including all the info you need on veteran-focused treatment centers like Heroes’ Mile. The first steps toward recovery start here.
What Is Military Alcohol Rehab?
Military alcohol rehab is meant to help veterans and active duty service members find treatment for addiction and co-occurring mental health disorders. The goal of this service is to guide you toward a healthier, happier lifestyle with a specific focus on the stressors of military life and the hardships that often come after you serve.
If you are struggling with an addiction to alcohol or drugs, know that you are not alone. In fact, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) reports that approximately 1.5 million veterans struggle with alcohol or drug addiction. Unfortunately, the majority of veterans never seek substance abuse treatment.
This is one of the reasons why substance abuse treatment for veterans requires specialized care. After all, you have gone through experiences while on duty that many others will never face in their lifetime.
Why Do Veterans Turn To Alcohol?
There are many reasons why veterans turn to alcohol or illicit drugs. Three of the biggest reasons include:
1. Return to Civilian Life
Returning to civilian life is one of the most challenging things that veterans have to do once they leave active duty. Military life is very different from civilian life. Most notably, your responsibilities when you serve often require specialized skills and an ability to take direction from higher ranking officers. Additionally, veterans and active duty military personnel learn to expect the unexpected.
This is why civilian life can feel like an entirely different world. Many veterans struggle to find work once they leave the military because the jobs that are available don’t always fit your interests or skill sets. Furthermore, some veterans return from service unable to work as a result of physical or mental conditions. This can put financial strain on veterans and cause more stress. As a result, veterans turn to alcohol as a way to cope with these new worries.
2. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PTSD occurs when someone goes through a traumatic event. Things like combat exposure, sexual abuse, injury, or even moving into a strange and dangerous place can all cause trauma. As stated above, military life is different from civilian life—mainly because of all of the traumatic encounters veterans face as part of their daily responsibilities while serving.
Interestingly, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs has found that about 20 percent of veterans who are diagnosed with PTSD also have a substance use disorder. The symptoms of PTSD include flashbacks and intense anxiety attacks, which can be frightening and uncomfortable to experience. Consequently, veterans then use alcohol to mask their painful emotions. Yet, this only worsens the symptoms and creates more mental health issues.
3. Other Untreated Mental Health Issues
PTSD is not the only mental health disorder that veterans experience. Depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation are incredibly common struggles for veterans. In Florida alone, hundreds of veterans commit suicide each year. But despite these statistics, the fact remains that suicide is entirely preventable with the right treatment options.
What Does Military Alcohol Rehab Look Like?
To recover from alcohol addiction and other mental health concerns, mental health professionals, like the staff at Heroes’ Mile, will walk you through all of the steps of military alcohol rehab. Typically, this starts with alcohol or drug detox.
In the detox process, you will be medically supervised to make sure that your physical and mental health are protected. Detox can be incredibly intense with high emotions and painful withdrawal symptoms such as:
- Sleeping difficulties
- Sore muscles
- Nausea and vomiting
This is why trained experts will be right by your side to keep you comfortable, safe, and on the right path toward recovery. But “getting clean” is more than just detoxing from alcohol or drugs. It involves deep personal reflection and dedication toward healing your mental health.
So, after detox, you will enter one of the treatment programs that best suits your individual needs. At Heroes’ Mile, we offer:
- Residential alcohol rehab
- Partial hospitalization program (PHP)
- And intensive outpatient treatment
Depending on your daily life responsibilities as well as current mental health and addiction needs, you will join one of these three programs and begin your recovery journey. Many veterans find it beneficial to participate in residential rehab, where they have a safe, sober environment to temporarily call home. PHP and intensive outpatient treatment can also be incredibly useful. Regardless of the program, you should always expect the best care.
At Heroes’ Mile, you will have access to many different therapeutic approaches that are scientifically proven to help both addiction and mental health issues. You might participate in any or all of the following therapies:
- Individual therapy
- Group therapy
- Recreational therapy
- Nutrition education
- Job preparedness training
- Equine therapy
Additionally, family therapy is available to veterans whose family members or friends are able to learn about addiction and mental health. Ultimately, the goal is to help you find a support system that will have your back while you complete your treatment programs and through any obstacles you’ll face once you return back home again.
There’s a reason why there are so many services available to you—we believe that you cannot just treat one struggle. Instead, these therapies are wide-ranging in order to provide you with physical, emotional, and spiritual healing. Remember, military alcohol rehab is about finding long-lasting recovery.
Where Can I Find Treatment Centers Near Me?
Located in sunny DeLand, Florida, Heroes’ Mile is here to offer evidence-based mental health and substance abuse treatment for veterans. To learn more about our treatment programs and your own steps toward recovery, give us a call at 888-838-6692 or complete our confidential form online. Here, you will be able to reflect on your past and prepare to move forward into a sober future.