SPRING HILL, Fla., Dec. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Wartime is a conflict which leaves some veterans unable to make a successful return to society, specifically those who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and turn to prescription drugs to cope – these vets are at high risk for drug and alcohol abuse, but they are also two times more likely to get prescriptions for addictive painkillers than vets with only physical pain (1). During the years since 9/11, the prescription rate at the U.S. Veterans Administration (VA) for several painkillers rose by 270 percent and recently, the office has come under fire for overmedicating veterans (2). In response to the prevalence of substance abuse among military veterans, Suncoast Rehab Center (SRC) has made a tradition of offering discounts to veterans. In the spirit of the holiday season, SRC recently announced an offering of 50 percent off the cost of its regular treatment program to assist in getting veterans and their family members the help they need.
One in six returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan suffers from a substance abuse disorder:
- Since 2004, the number of veterans treated for mental illness and substance abuse has increased 38 percent, and
- 81 percent of arrested veterans had a substance abuse problem (3).
Tammy Strickling, SRC's Executive Director, says veterans are being endlessly supplied with prescription medications despite the well-documented addiction rate: one in five users of prescription opioids become addicted. Suncoast offers discounts year-round to veterans, but Strickling decided to offer the 50 percent discount to make the holiday season a special time for those struggling with addiction. Strickling says that while better protocols are necessary to manage the physical and emotional pain veterans face, SRC wants to help individuals take the first step towards sobriety through rehabilitation.
"Prescription painkiller addiction is a societal problem that affects a large part of our returning veterans – while we can never fully repay veterans for the sacrifices they have made, we want to do everything in our power to ensure that every family enjoys the holidays by being drug and alcohol free," said Strickling.
Strickling maintains that veterans afflicted with addiction were once contributing members of society who unwittingly became addicted after being prescribed medications upon return to the states. Treatment, per Strickling, is not only the most critical step in recovery, but it is also the most difficult, specifically for those who suffer from PTSD and related disorders.
Suncoast enables its clients to take the first step in conquering addiction with long-term residential treatment programs, which include:
● Sauna detoxification that removes drug residues and toxins that cause cravings and relapse; and
● Life skills and cognitive therapy that get to the bottom of the addiction, discovering what caused the drug use in the first place.
Suncoast's medical team designs treatment programs to physically address the malnutrition created by drug abuse, and the SRC counseling team tailors patient therapy to discovering what caused the drug use in the first place—all intended to help those struggling with addiction learn to confront life better without reverting to drug use.
SRC has received a 100% positive rating by the Florida Department of Children and Families for four consecutive years. SRC's mission is to offer quality rehabilitation coupled with drug prevention education.
SRC's military discount program will extend throughout the month of December.
To learn more about the Suncoast Rehabilitation Center and its rehab programs, call 1-800-511-9403 or visit www.suncoastrehabcenter.com.
About Suncoast Rehab Center:
Located in Spring Hill, Florida, Suncoast Rehab Center provides long-term residential treatment, intensive sauna detoxification, life skills and cognitive therapy and counseling. Suncoast is licensed by the Florida Department of Children and Families, and was recently awarded a 100% inspection score for the fourth year in a row. Suncoast has a mission to educate youth and adults about drugs and their dangers, with the aim of preventing future drug use and abuse. Suncoast handles the physical deficiencies, weakness and problems created through drug use, without the use of additional drugs. Clients are helped to uncover the issues that led to their drug use through counseling, therapy and life skills that put the client back in control of his/her life and future. Suncoast's purpose in drug rehabilitation is to heal the whole person and give the person tools and education to remain drug–free. For more information, visit www.suncoastrehabcenter.com.
- Tanner, Lindsey. "PTSD Veterans Prone to Drug Addiction Get Risky Painkillers." Usatoday.com. USA Today, 6 Mar. 2012. Web. 11 Dec. 2013. usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/health/story/health/story/2012-03-06/PTSD-veterans-prone-to-drug-addiction-get-risky-painkillers/53388510/1.
- Mientka, Matthew. "Veterans Administration Accused Of Over-Medicating War Veterans." Medicaldaily.com. N.p., 12 Nov. 2013. Web. 11 Dec. 2013. medicaldaily.com/veterans-administration-accused-over-medicating-war-veterans-many-now-battling-addiction-along-pain.
- Brewin, Bob. "VA and Defense Chiefs Confront Reality of 700,000 Incarcerated Veterans." Nextgov.com. N.p., 3 Dec. 2013. Web. 11 Dec. 2013. nextgov.com/defense/2013/12/va-and-defense-chiefs-confront-reality-700000-incarcerated-veterans/74816/.
Karla Jo Helms
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SOURCE Suncoast Rehab Center