Dealing with Trauma and Substance Abuse

Friday, October 4th, 2013
Traumatic experiences can lead to or exacerbate substance use disorders.

Traumatic experiences can lead to or exacerbate substance use disorders.

Traumatic events happen to people every day. These events can consist of any form of abuse, violence, threats of violence, environmental disasters, war, or witnessing a catastrophic event. It is estimated that nearly 75 percent of Americans will be exposed to at least one traumatic event in their lifetime. When it comes to adolescents, one study indicates that approximately 25 percent of youth will experience a traumatic event by the age of 16.

Many experts believe there is a link between trauma and addiction. Studies have shown that experiencing trauma during childhood or adolescence can increase the risk of substance abuse. There is also strong evidence that the cycle continues, as adolescents who abuse substances are at a significantly higher risk for experiencing trauma and developing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). At the same time, individuals who are recovering from a traumatic event or PTSD can be all too easily triggered into abusing drugs or alcohol. These triggers can consist of a variety of situations that remind the individual of the trauma and even lead him or her to relive it. Unfortunately, many people try to cope with these experiences through the use of alcohol or drugs.

Phoenix House’s substance abuse treatment programs provide a strong focus on the many issues faced by individuals suffering from addiction, especially those caused or exacerbated by trauma. By incorporating the appropriate treatments, we work diligently to facilitate the rehabilitation of each person in our care.

At all three of Phoenix House Florida’s locations, our highly skilled and compassionate professional staff use evidence-based treatment curricula that not only help individuals recover from substance abuse, but also address co-occurring mental health issues. At the Phoenix House Community Residence in Citra and at our two outpatient locations in Tampa and Brandon, our goal is to help individuals reclaim their lives from alcohol and drug addiction.

If someone you love is dealing with addiction complicated by mental health issues, please call us today 1 888 671 9392.  Help is just a phone call away.

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