Substance abuse or addiction isn’t usually a problem that springs from nothing. It is merely a coping skill to obscure an enormous underlying issue, such as trauma. A statistic reveals that 75% of people with severe trauma became alcohol abusers. For most individuals in treatment, trauma is one issue that slows their recovery.
While trauma impacts people differently, the origins of these experiences usually center on the traumatic event, the response to the event, and the effect the event and the response create. Trauma and addiction are intertwined. That’s where trauma-informed care becomes pivotal. This article explores the meaning of the trauma-informed approach in addiction treatment, its importance, and its core principles.
What is Trauma?
Trauma is any disturbing event the body and brain can’t cope with. It can be a one-time or a series of long-lasting events. Trauma impacts people differently, but functioning at optimal capacity is almost impossible. What you call traumatic may not be interpreted the same way by another.
When you witness a disturbing event, your brain reacts by secreting the stress hormone and activating the fight or flight response. This is so because it perceives the event as dangerous. However, when this stress response extends due to the belief that you are always in danger and helpless to do anything about it, it can create lifelong consequences on your memory and emotions. It confuses the brain to think you’re in danger while you aren’t. This leads to using alcohol or drugs to cope with the traumatic behavior.
Trauma triggers are:
- Childhood illness
- Witnessing a disturbing event, such as a natural disaster, robbery, or plane crash
- Lack of parental support or caregiver
- Victim of a child, emotional, or sexual abuse
- Seeing a family member abusing the other
These triggers can affect your ability to cope with daily stressors, affect relationships, cause concentration problems, and make you hypervigilant.
Trauma-Informed Care Explained
Trauma-informed care is a meticulous, holistic approach that acknowledges the impact of trauma on those wanting addiction treatment. This approach recognizes that many people with substance abuse problems are traumatized, and untreated trauma can affect their sobriety. Trauma-informed treatment is vital to overcoming trauma and living more fulfilling lives.
Trauma-informed treatment aims to help patients understand and recover from trauma and not get traumatized again. Healthcare providers believe that by addressing the traumatic experiences associated with the addiction, patients can stop feeling guilty or shameful and come to terms with reality.
Benefits of Trauma-Informed Approach
The benefits are immense. Firstly, it results in a better outcome, as individuals understand themselves better and will work with a better approach to attaining recovery.
Secondly, it increases engagement, as patients interact with staff daily, improving communication skills.
Lastly, it empowers individuals to break free from their traumatic experiences and live an addiction-free life.
The Core Principles of Trauma-Informed Care
There are fundamental principles that guide trauma-informed treatment for addiction. They include:
- Safety: This involves creating a safe space for clients to heal. In addiction treatment, it means establishing an environment where patients always feel mentally and physically safe. Security is essential, as it fosters trust and recovery.
- Empowerment and Choice: Healthcare professionals enlighten the patients about their responsibilities and rights, leaving them a platform to make their choices and enforce their decisions. This is helpful for those who have their control taken away from them.
- Trustworthiness: Providing trauma care entails creating a safe and secure environment. Healthcare providers must ensure staff members are trustworthy and consistent in patient interactions.
- Collaboration: It involves working together as a team with the patient and the family to create a tailored plan that suits the recovery objective. Collaboration respects the individual’s autonomy and puts them in charge of their lives.
- Cultural Sensitivity: Cultural sensitivity means acknowledging people’s diverse backgrounds and respecting their culture and beliefs. It means incorporating their beliefs into the treatment plan accordingly.
Trauma-Informed Addiction Treatment Approaches
Using multiple approaches in addiction treatment can guarantee a higher success. Excel Treatment blends all trauma-informed techniques to treat patients adequately to overcome addiction. Some of these approaches are;
Psychodrama: Excel Treatment specialists utilize guided drama techniques to help addicts manage their disorder. They help them develop tools to cope with stress and enhance their interpersonal communication.
Experimental Therapy: ET entails activities and particular movements that keep patients actively engaged. Think of it as an outdoor exercise that involves spending time in nature. Activities like kayaking and role-playing can relieve symptoms of addiction and trauma.
Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing: EMDR uses eye movement to help identify trauma and heal from it as you continue with addiction treatment.
Excel Treatment Center Uses Trauma-Informed Approach to Help with Addiction Recovery
Trauma treatment in addiction recovery is one of the crucial treatment programs offered at Excel Treatment Center. We have an experienced treatment team that understands the effect of trauma on patients and helps them realize that addiction came to be due to failure to cope with trauma. Our tailored approach is focused on transforming patients’ lives and responding to their needs. Our world-class addiction treatment center in New Jersey is equipped to guarantee your healing from addiction. Ready to take charge of your life? Call us today to get started. We are ready to help you recover your life and live happily ever after.