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PSTD and Addiction: Understanding the Connection

ptsd and addiction

PTSD impacts people mentally and emotionally, can cause severe anxiety, bring on nightmares, and force the reliving of unwanted memories. All of this leads to a severe disruption of day-to-day functionality. Many suffering from PTSD will eventually turn to drugs or alcohol to cope and find temporary relief from the pain. Sadly, PTSD and addiction are far too common, but help is available. Contact A Better State online or call us at 781.412.1488 today to learn how our PTSD Treatment program can shine light in the darkness and guide you to a happier and healthier life.

What is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?

PTSD is a psychological condition occurring after a person suffers exposure to a traumatic incident or series of events. This may include experiencing it firsthand or witnessing the trauma. In the aftermath of physical or psychological trauma, an individual may feel powerless or out of control and develop post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction.

The Connection Between PTSD and Addiction

PTSD and substance abuse are intrinsically linked. 75% of people in substance abuse treatment programs report histories of drug abuse and trauma. PTSD treatment can uncover and make sense of post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction through individual counseling and group sessions. At the same time, compassionate, empathetic medical professionals address the roots of PTSD and addiction to see and heal you as a whole person and show you that a brighter future is possible.

Some of the trauma that has been known to cause PTSD to include:

  • Armed conflict
  • War
  • Workplace violence
  • Natural disasters
  • Sexual violence
  • Childhood abuse or neglect
  • School shooting

While suffering from both PTSD and substance abuse, you may begin to feel overwhelmed and alone. Coping with the harm caused by war, violence, abuse, and childhood trauma can lead to a search for temporary relief from drugs or alcohol. Addiction may soon follow, complicating your mental state, emotional well-being, and physical condition. In these cases, it is important to rely on a PTSD treatment program staffed by a compassionate, expert team who understand fully and appreciate the connection between PTSD and addiction. When being treated as a whole person with a unique set of experiences and needs, you will come to learn that you are not alone, that your post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction are seen, and know that it is possible to overcome a traumatic past and enjoy a happier, healthier future.

PTSD impacts not only a person’s emotional state but their physical well-being too. PTSD typically involves bad dreams, flashbacks, avoidance of anything to do with the events of a singular traumatic incident, tension, restlessness, and a dangerous upheaval in life. These side effects can strike at any time. When suffering from intense trauma and PTSD, plus an ensuing substance use disorder, a person may experience:

  • Abnormal sleeping patterns, bad dreams
  • Respiratory issues
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Muscular pain
  • Physical discomfort
  • Cardiovascular issues
  • Neurological problems

The Importance of PTSD Treatment

No one should ever have to handle their PTSD and substance abuse alone. And with a PTSD treatment program like the one offered at A Better State, no one has to. People who are fighting two battles without a strong support network or professional help they need and deserve to receive will too often turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with the hurt, anger, memories, and regret of the traumatic events of their past. Self-medication offers only temporary relief for PTSD. Over time, a substance use disorder will emerge, and the drugs will dig you an even deeper hole. This will make mental health problems even more difficult to manage daily.

There is no one size fits all approach to treating PTSD and addiction. A Better State’s skilled, passionate team of medical professionals will design a personalized PTSD treatment plan with you and your whole self in mind. This way, your post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction are addressed properly together, allowing you to begin to heal, learn, and recover. Coping mechanisms and life skills that will help you overcome both PTSD and substance abuse, avoid relapse, and ultimately show you a way forward for a lifetime of recovery will be vital for your treatment and recovery.

Learn More at A Better State

Learn how our trauma-informed, holistic approach to treating post-traumatic stress disorder and addiction can be the starting point for moving forward safely without drugs or alcohol. Contact us using our secure online form or call us confidentially at 781.412.1488 today.