Canaan, CT – This September marks the 30th anniversary of National Recovery Month, which recognizes those who have overcome addiction and mental health disorders while acknowledging that recovery is a year-round effort. To ensure that people can achieve lasting sobriety, Mountainside treatment center in Canaan, CT aims to destigmatize addiction and provides ongoing support to members of the sober community.
People may be hesitant to take the first steps toward recovery out of fear of being shunned by their communities. Because of a general lack of awareness, many struggling with substance use and mental health disorders avoid reaching out for help. In 2017, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) estimated that almost 21 million Americans aged 12 and over required substance use treatment, but only 4 million people received care.
National Recovery Month aims to reverse this trend by educating the public about substance use disorders and encouraging those in active addiction to remain focused on finding hope and healing in recovery. The National Recovery Month theme for 2019, Join the Voices for Recovery: Together We Are Stronger, specifically highlights the role of support networks and community involvement in strengthening recovery efforts.
“Building a support system of family, friends, peers, and treatment professionals can help people achieve lasting sobriety,” says Andrea Kreisz, Senior Family Wellness Clinician at Mountainside. “When someone decides to put down their drink or drug of choice for good, they may feel overwhelmed by the big picture. Loved ones and mentors can help ground them and remind them why they chose recovery in the first place.”
Regardless of the number of years of sobriety a person has achieved, setbacks can happen. Up to 60 percent of addicted individuals return to using substances at some point in their recovery. Relapse is a reality, but it is preventable. Often, feelings of isolation or low self-worth can factor into a person’s decision to use again. By forming meaningful connections, those struggling with addiction can rediscover how to have sober fun while fostering self-confidence and self-awareness.
“Addiction is an issue that affects everyone: individuals, families, and entire communities. By opening up discussions about addiction and improving access to support services, community leaders can equip struggling individuals and families with the tools they need to move forward and lead productive, rewarding lives in recovery,” says Kreisz. “Recovery is hard work, but through collective efforts, we can assure people that it is worth maintaining and celebrating.”
For additional information on addiction and finding support this National Recovery Month, contact a local treatment center.