War veterans sacrifice a lot when they’re away fighting for the country. They sacrifice their family time, their comfort, and their health, while serving the country. Their health sacrifice, however, comes at a greater cost to themselves and to the ones around them. Having been through the trauma of war, most veterans resort to substance use to relieve themselves of the pain they experience.
Veterans who have suffered disability in the line of duty often do resort to unhealthy coping mechanisms that often involves the use of drugs or opioids. War-time soldiers have scars, either physical or traumatic ones, from the battlefields, which are difficult to forget.
It’s difficult to talk about it, and not talking about it can then lead to depression. It causes individuals to lose sleep and experience PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), which is extremely distressing for them as well for those around them.
As a society, it’s our job to honor their services as best as we can, and encouraging therapy is the right way to bring them back to normalcy. Addiction among veterans is a more prevalent issue, one that should require us to look into the treatment options. Discussed below are some of the benefits of addiction treatment for veterans:
Eliminate the root cause
At least, 1 in 15 war veterans has used substances after leaving active duty. These stats highlight the effects of the unforgiving war conditions and the scars the soldiers are left to endure the rest of their lives.
Before their resort to drugs gets out of hand when they return from active duty, we must try to look into admitting them with veteran addiction services, so that they can be weaned off the substances under professional supervision.
With proper treatment plans, underlying causes behind drug addiction can easily be identified. This requires the veterans to undergo therapy for their mental health issues that are feeding their addiction.
By identifying the trauma and processing through it, we help them get over their drug abuse and addiction. In helping them treat the underlying causes of the addiction, they stand a far better chance of getting over the addiction.
The approach of treating causes rather than symptoms of addiction works extremely well in a lot of situations. Once the underlying causes have been addressed, the addict feels little need to fall back on old habits and worry those around him/her. In therapy when they hash out their feelings openly, they start to change their perceptions about the world around them, thereby, loosening the tight grips of the urges and cravings that hold them firmly chained to the addiction.
Treating physical injuries
War veterans rely on drugs to numb the pain of their physical injuries and the traumas/horrors they have had to endure in service. They would readily reach out for a bag of the substance of their choice than track the root cause of their pain. It’s because of the pain and the expensive treatments that treat post-traumatic disorders that makes them rely on drugs and alcohol rather than find a worthwhile cure.
Pain management programs in this case are a great way to help them get off substances. Not only do these programs help addicts get off the drugs, but they also introduce them to alternative coping mechanisms for their pain.
Pain management techniques also include regular exercise which is a surefire way of improving one’s health. Sweating not only helps with the pain and detoxifies the body of the toxins that have accumulated after years of addiction, but it also improves your muscular movement and appearance. Instead of going for piecemeal and symptomatic treatment options, veterans should be introduced to more holistic treatment options.
Another leading cause of addiction among the war veterans is their inability to hold genuine relationships. Because of their mental health disorders such as PTSD, lots of their relationships are compromised, and with little to no support, they resort to drugs.
Proper addiction treatment plans include the addict’s family members and friends in the process. Such plans mend relationships and build empathy for the trauma victims. It helps veterans open up about their pain and learn to deal with it, rather than numbing it by relying on drugs. Lots of communication barriers are broken and feelings of resentment are effectively addressed.
Veterans are unable to hold jobs because it is hard for them to adjust to society and its ways when they first arrive home from the frontlines. Employers are reluctant to hire and take veterans to maintain workplace decorum. With financial worries and trauma to boot, there is no recourse but to take up the bottle or the syringe as a coping mechanism.
With proper therapy and treatment plans, war veterans can be reintegrated into society where they’ll be able to avail all sorts of employment opportunities. With assurances of treatment, employer worries can be relieved, resulting in greater financial freedom for the veterans.
Coming to terms with yourself
Treatment plans aim at holistic development. Veterans undergoing therapy will receive the needed tools that will help in coping with all the stresses in a healthier manner. Therapy empowers you against your cravings and urges, and it also provides you with strategies to help your mind steer off the drugs.
Therapy allows you to set sights on better life goals and build a stronger sense of identity. It inculcates values and motivations for living a better life.
Therapy essentially frees your mind of the control that drugs hold over your life, relieving your feelings of helplessness. It helps with reasserting your control over life, which is especially important for a war veteran.
War veterans provide an invaluable service to the nation, and it’s important to look after them after the end of their service. In their addiction, they cannot play a significant role in the society. Addiction treatment programs help them get back on their feet and get off the crutches that they’ve adopted for the traumas that they’ve had to endure. Treatment programs help address their underlying stress and trauma, rebuild relations with their estranged friends and family, and seek gainful employment.