Substance abuse can affect anyone and military veterans are no exception. Veterans, however, often don’t seek treatment for substance abuse addiction due to stigma and fear of repercussions. While illicit drug use is lower among U.S. military personnel, other issues such as heavy alcohol, tobacco use, and prescription drug abuse are more prevalent. We’ll explain why substance abuse is increasing among veterans, mental health’s role in addiction, and how veterans in Alachua, FL can find treatment.
Table of Contents
- 1 How Substance Abuse Affects Military Veterans
- 2 The Military’s Prescription Drugs and Alcohol Use Problem
- 3 Treatment Options For Military Veterans In Alachua, Florida
- 4 Addiction Treatment Costs
- 5 Tricare Coverage For Rehab
- 6 How Long Does Treatment Last?
- 7 How To Find Treatment For Military Veterans?
- 8 Treating Veteran Drug Addiction At Rally Point
- 9 ¹ “How Common Is PTSD in Veterans?” U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Accessed 14 Oct. 2018. ² “Substance Abuse in Veterans.” U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Accessed 14 Oct. 2018. ³ “Substance Abuse in the Military.” National Institute on Drug Abuse. Mar. 2013.
How Substance Abuse Affects Military Veterans
The physical, emotional, and mental health issues that military veterans face are typically different from civilians which can include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance use disorder (SUD). Two common causes of PTSD among veterans is combat and sexual trauma. According to VA reports, over 11 percent of veterans who have seen combat experience PTSD.¹
According to the VA²:
- More than 2 of 10 veterans with PTSD also have SUD
- War veterans with PTSD and alcohol problems tend to be binge drinkers; binges may be in response to bad memories of combat trauma
- Almost 1 out of every 3 veterans seeking treatment for SUD also has PTSD
- The number of veterans who smoke (nicotine) is almost double for those with PTSD (about 6 of 10) versus those without a PTSD diagnosis (3 of 10)
- In the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, about 1 in 10 returning soldiers seen in VA have a problem with alcohol or other drugs
Since PTSD and SUD often overlap, it’s imperative that drug rehabs for veterans offer personalized programs to address these health issues.
The Military’s Prescription Drugs and Alcohol Use Problem
Although military service members have low rates of illicit drug use (which is likely due to the military’s zero-tolerance policy), prescription drug abuse and alcohol use are higher among service members than civilians. In 2008, 11 percent of service members reported misusing prescription drugs, up from 2 percent in 2002 and 4 percent in 2005.³ Most of the prescription drugs misused by service members are opioid pain medications.
The greater availability of these medications and increases in prescriptions are a couple of reasons behind the increasing rate of prescription drug abuse. Additionally, combat-related injuries and the physical hardships from carrying heavy equipment during multiple deployments may also play a role.
With alcohol, almost half of active duty service members (47 percent) reported binge drinking in 2008 – an increase from 35 percent in 1998. In 2008, 20 percent of military personnel reported binge drinking every week in the past month and the rate was higher (27 percent) among those with high combat exposure.
The Institute of Medicine (IOM Report) prepared a report in 2012 for the Department of Defense with recommended ways to address the military’s substance use problem:
- Increase the use of evidence-based prevention and treatment interventions
- Expand access to care
- Broaden insurance coverage to include effective outpatient treatments
- Better equip healthcare providers to recognize and screen for substance use problems so they can refer patients to appropriate, evidence-based treatment when needed
- Measures that limit access to alcohol on bases
It was also noted in the IOM report that addressing substance use in the military will require increasing confidentiality and shifting the military’s culture in which mental health and substance use issues are stigmatized and evoke fear of repurcusions.
Treatment Options For Military Veterans In Alachua, Florida
There are many types of military drug and alcohol rehab programs in and around Alachua to suit different needs. Below are some common addiction treatments:
- Detoxification: The management of withdrawal symptoms, or detoxification, may be appropriate for those experiencing acute phases of substance use withdrawal. This level of care requires the personnel and facilities of a hospital or a Substance Use Disorder Rehabilitation Facility (SUDRF).
- Residential Treatment: For people who have a significant impairment that interferes with normal functioning and they’re unable to function in the community with only outpatient services. Individuals in this level of care may not require the services of a hospital full-time but may find that residential treatment centers are able to provide a highly structured therapeutic environment with 24-hour services.
- Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP): This level of care is suitable when a person has significant impairment from substance abuse that interferes with normal functioning. Individuals often transition to PHP after detoxification, residential treatment, or if they’re unable to maintain a healthy lifestyle in a lower level of outpatient care. Services may be provided during the day, evening, night, or weekend and individuals usually reside in a recovery residence for added support.
- Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP): For individuals with a substance abuse disorder who need stabilization, symptom reduction, or prevention of relapse. Individuals can transition to IOP after completing a higher level of care, like PHP, or if regular outpatient care is not appropriate. Services may be provided during the day, evening, night, or weekend and individuals may reside in a recovery residence for added support or live at home.
- Outpatient (OP): Outpatient treatment includes individual, family, or group psychotherapy. Individuals can transition to OP after completing a higher level of care like PHP or IOP.
Receiving the right treatment for your needs is an important step in the recovery process. When searching for drug rehabs for veterans, you should check that the treatment provider not only treats co-occurring disorders (like PTSD, SUD, depression, anxiety, etc.) but they also practice effective treatments like cognitive behavioral therapy and they’re trained in trauma-informed care.
Addiction Treatment Costs
Treatment costs will vary depending on the addiction treatment you’re receiving, where you go, and if your insurance will cover it fully, partially, or none. Fortunately, insurances have improved in increasing their coverage for substance abuse and addiction treatments. In addition, many alcohol and drug rehabs have financing options and sometimes provide military discounts.
When it comes to determining the final cost, it’s important to ask questions regarding insurance and payment options but also to receive clear answers from prospective rehabs. Don’t let concerns of treatment costs prevent you from seeking help from a veterans drug rehab in Alachua, Florida.
Tricare Coverage For Rehab
Tricare covers a lot of the treatment options we discussed earlier (with prior authorization) but similar to other insurances, its coverage contains limits on the type and duration of rehab services that will be fully funded. These limits can include what forms of treatment you’re able to receive and the amount of time you can remain in treatment. Tricare may cover all expenses related to treatment for substance abuse or addiction but there’s a possibility that you’ll have to pay for part of your rehab costs.
To confirm what services Tricare will cover at Rally Point, please contact us for further assistance. When you call, a staff member will collect certain information from you to help determine the type, scope, and duration of addiction treatment services that Tricare will cover for you or your family member.
TRICARE insurance plans we accept:
- TRICARE Prime
- TRICARE Prime Remote
- TRICARE Prime Overseas
- TRICARE Prime Remote Overseas
- TRICARE Select
- TRICARE Select Overseas
- TRICARE For Life
- TRICARE Reserve Select
- TRICARE Retired Reserve
- TRICARE Young Adult
- US Family Health Plan
How Long Does Treatment Last?
Depending on the pre-assessment, level of care required, duration of the stay, amenities provided, and location, we can determine the best rehab program options for you or a family member.
How To Find Treatment For Military Veterans?
You can find treatment providers by:
- Asking a family doctor or other medical professional for a recommendation
- Contacting Tricare for in-network providers and out-of-network options
- Browsing the VA’s online directories for PTSD and SUD programs
- Checking out online resources such as the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers’ directory or the accredited providers listed on CARF International and The Joint Commission websites
Although the treatment providers you receive as recommendations or find listed on these websites are a great place to start, please note that it doesn’t necessarily guarantee quality. We recommend that you thoroughly research the treatment provider, look up reviews, and if possible, schedule an in-person meeting. Furthermore, be careful with Internet-based commercial directories, generic websites, ads offering free treatment placement, websites that offer unsolicited referrals, or unverifiable treatment center rankings.
Treating Veteran Drug Addiction At Rally Point
Rally Point is a state licensed and Joint Commission accredited alcohol and drug rehab located four hours south of Alachua, Florida in Palm Beach County. Our staff is trained in trauma-informed care, cognitive behavioral therapy, co-occurring disorders treatment, and more. With veterans on our staff, we’re able to provide a supportive, non-judgmental community for our veteran clients. As a TRICARE provider, we’re proud to serve those who have served us. Contact us on our 24/7 confidential hotline at (888) 797-2559 or take our online assessment to get started on your personalized treatment program.
Rally Point Palm Beach Rehab
1130 Elizabeth Avenue
West Palm Beach, Florida 33401