Unfortunately, the majority of patients who have been through addiction treatment multiple times are never treated for underlying cases of PTSD – and they are rarely ever informed of their PTSD diagnosis when the disorder is detected.
We have had innumerable patients come to us with untreated cases of post-traumatic stress disorder, lacking the education necessary to understand PTSD as an entirely treatable disorder.
Trauma, according to the DSM-V, regards a personal experience involving emotionally-scarring acts of violence, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, severe neglect, loss, the witnessing of violence, terrorism, and natural disasters. Better understanding the personal traumatic experiences of each of our clients helps us to better treat them for related symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. We have extensive experience treating survivors of sexual assault, as well as first responders such as police officers, paramedics, and fire fighters.
The dual diagnosis of PTSD and substance abuse is exceedingly common, seeing as many PTSD sufferers turn to excessive drug and alcohol use in order to relieve intrusive and uncomfortable emotional and psychological symptoms. These symptoms include intrusion (ex; nightmares), avoidance (ex; of the trauma discussion or related stimuli), arousal (ex; insomnia) and functional problems at work, school, and in interpersonal relationships.
Educating patients on the relationship between PTSD and substance abuse is a key component of stabilization. We utilize a combination of cognitive, behavioral, interpersonal and case management therapies to help patients identify, address, and overcome their present symptoms. Some psychological symptoms commonly related to PTSD might include (but are not limited to), anxiety, hostility, suicidal thoughts and plans, difficulty with family and social functioning, intimacy issues, and identifying a sense of purpose.
At Next Chapter, we strive to create an environment founded on personal safety and communal trust. Our staff has been specially trained to assist those dealing with unresolved trauma. We recognize that our patients and family members may not always understand or be able to communicate directly with their traumatic histories. Because of this, we are especially careful to not pry our clients too far beyond their comfort zones, doing further harm.