image of woman discussing trauma with therapist

The Importance of Addressing the Role of Personal Trauma in Alcoholism and Drug Addiction

There's a definite link between trauma, alcoholism, and drug abuse.

young asain woman facing cameraNumerous studies over the past 30 years have established that there is a definite link between trauma and alcoholism and/or drug addiction. In fact, many substance abuse treatment facilities treat trauma and addiction as co-occurring disorders. Not only does trauma enhance one’s likelihood of engaging in substance abuse, but the substance abuse itself represents risky behaviors that can lead to more traumatic experiences. Additionally, those struggling with addiction typically find it more difficult to cope with traumatic events.

Trauma can be induced by any number of events, such as:

  • Emotional and/or physical childhood abuse,
  • Sexual assault or abuse,
  • Natural disaster,
  • Accident,
  • Crime and
  • Grief

Additionally, a person doesn’t necessarily have to be the direct victim of such events, as witnessing bad things happening to others can prove equally traumatic.

A somewhat vague term, “trauma” lends itself to a broad range of definitions. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines trauma as:

an event, series of events, or set of circumstances experienced by an individual as physically or emotionally harmful or life-threatening with long-lasting adverse effects on the individual’s functioning and mental, physical, social, emotional, or spiritual well-being.

That is a mouthful, but the key to the definition is its focus on the individual and how trauma represents a differential subjective experience for that person. While one person surviving a bad car accident or natural disaster might end up traumatized, another survivor of the same accident or disaster may not experience the same. Likewise, a person traumatized by the loss of a loved one, might be able to shake off the potential trauma caused by a mugging.

The Prevalence of Trauma in Addiction

Just how prevalent is trauma in relation to those struggling with alcoholism and/or drug addiction? Well, just consider these findings from assorted studies conducted on trauma’s relation to addiction:

  • image of serious looking man facing cameraMore than two-thirds of people seeking substance abuse treatment report one or more traumatic lifetime events.
  • Each incidence of childhood trauma (termed “adverse childhood experience”) increased the risk of early initiation into illegal drug use by a factor of between two to four-fold.
  • Subjects reporting five or more adverse childhood experiences are seven to ten times more likely to become chronic abusers of alcohol and/or illegal drugs.
  • More than 60 percent of IV drug users report experiencing abusive and/or traumatic childhood events.
  • The compulsive use of nicotine, alcohol, and street drugs increases proportionally in a manner that closely parallels the intensity of trauma experienced in childhood.
  • Substance-abusing individuals experience physical assault and/or witness serious injury or death of others at rates two to three times higher than the general population.

While the various research does not link all addiction to trauma, it’s clear that trauma plays a role with many people suffering with addiction. This statement makes sense because no one wants to experience the pain, stress, anxiety, confusion, insomnia, and other negative effects potentially caused by trauma. In an effort to mask these feelings, many turn to alcohol and drugs to cope. Self-medicating may help someone manage their trauma in the short run, but it opens them up for addiction and its many complications over the longer run.

In treating someone’s addiction, it is always important to determine the extent any trauma may have played in encouraging their usage of alcohol and/or drugs, and treat the trauma along with the addiction accordingly.  Because of the prevalence of trauma with addiction, Gulf Breeze Recovery incorporates a segment in their program, called traumatrac, which is devoted to those suffering with PTSD and trauma.

If you or someone you care about, has an ongoing history of alcohol or substance use and/or relapse, contact Gulf Breeze Recovery or call: (855) 433-4480 to speak to an addiction expert to learn more about their residential program, out-patient program, and intensive out-patient program, and which of these can best fit your individual needs.  These programs have helped many people overcome their addiction and embrace their new happy, healthy, substance-free lifestyle.

Sources:

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The front of Gulf Breeze Recovery a non 12 step holistic drug and alcohol rehab specializing in helping guests overcome chronic relapse

About Gulf Breeze Recovery:

Gulf Breeze Recovery, unlike other treatment centers in Florida, is a non 12 step holistic drug and alcohol rehab that is changing the future of addiction treatment with their THRIVE® (Total Health Recovery) program focused on overcoming chronic relapse.
Gulf Breeze Recovery’s THRIVE® program is a non 12-step approach designed for those who are looking for a drug and alcohol treatment program to produce a different and positive result.
This non-12 step program allows you to drive beyond your addictions and promotes a new outlook on life.
We are licensed by the Florida Department of Children and Families, and our last audit scored 99.7! Also, we are gold certified by the Joint Commission.

Program logo: Gulf Breeze Recovery offers a true non-12-Step, holistic drug treatment program with licensed mental health professionals who have small caseloads so that they can offer individualized and intensive care and it's called THRIVE®

End Chronic Relapse and Start a New Life!

At Gulf Breeze Recovery we don’t want you to have just a great recovery, we want you to have a great life!

Contact Us, or Call: (855) 433-4480

There's a definite link between trauma, alcoholism, and drug abuse.

young asain woman facing cameraNumerous studies over the past 30 years have established that there is a definite link between trauma and alcoholism and/or drug addiction. In fact, many substance abuse treatment facilities treat trauma and addiction as co-occurring disorders. Not only does trauma enhance one’s likelihood of engaging in substance abuse, but the substance abuse itself represents risky behaviors that can lead to more traumatic experiences. Additionally, those struggling with addiction typically find it more difficult to cope with traumatic events.

Trauma can be induced by any number of events, such as:

  • Emotional and/or physical childhood abuse,
  • Sexual assault or abuse,
  • Natural disaster,
  • Accident,
  • Crime and
  • Grief

Additionally, a person doesn’t necessarily have to be the direct victim of such events, as witnessing bad things happening to others can prove equally traumatic.

A somewhat vague term, “trauma” lends itself to a broad range of definitions. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines trauma as:

an event, series of events, or set of circumstances experienced by an individual as physically or emotionally harmful or life-threatening with long-lasting adverse effects on the individual’s functioning and mental, physical, social, emotional, or spiritual well-being.

That is a mouthful, but the key to the definition is its focus on the individual and how trauma represents a differential subjective experience for that person. While one person surviving a bad car accident or natural disaster might end up traumatized, another survivor of the same accident or disaster may not experience the same. Likewise, a person traumatized by the loss of a loved one, might be able to shake off the potential trauma caused by a mugging.

The Prevalence of Trauma in Addiction

Just how prevalent is trauma in relation to those struggling with alcoholism and/or drug addiction? Well, just consider these findings from assorted studies conducted on trauma’s relation to addiction:

  • image of serious looking man facing cameraMore than two-thirds of people seeking substance abuse treatment report one or more traumatic lifetime events.
  • Each incidence of childhood trauma (termed “adverse childhood experience”) increased the risk of early initiation into illegal drug use by a factor of between two to four-fold.
  • Subjects reporting five or more adverse childhood experiences are seven to ten times more likely to become chronic abusers of alcohol and/or illegal drugs.
  • More than 60 percent of IV drug users report experiencing abusive and/or traumatic childhood events.
  • The compulsive use of nicotine, alcohol, and street drugs increases proportionally in a manner that closely parallels the intensity of trauma experienced in childhood.
  • Substance-abusing individuals experience physical assault and/or witness serious injury or death of others at rates two to three times higher than the general population.

While the various research does not link all addiction to trauma, it’s clear that trauma plays a role with many people suffering with addiction. This statement makes sense because no one wants to experience the pain, stress, anxiety, confusion, insomnia, and other negative effects potentially caused by trauma. In an effort to mask these feelings, many turn to alcohol and drugs to cope. Self-medicating may help someone manage their trauma in the short run, but it opens them up for addiction and its many complications over the longer run.

In treating someone’s addiction, it is always important to determine the extent any trauma may have played in encouraging their usage of alcohol and/or drugs, and treat the trauma along with the addiction accordingly.  Because of the prevalence of trauma with addiction, Gulf Breeze Recovery incorporates a segment in their program, called traumatrac, which is devoted to those suffering with PTSD and trauma.

If you or someone you care about, has an ongoing history of alcohol or substance use and/or relapse, contact Gulf Breeze Recovery or call: (855) 433-4480 to speak to an addiction expert to learn more about their residential program, out-patient program, and intensive out-patient program, and which of these can best fit your individual needs.  These programs have helped many people overcome their addiction and embrace their new happy, healthy, substance-free lifestyle.

The front of Gulf Breeze Recovery a non 12 step holistic drug and alcohol rehab specializing in helping guests overcome chronic relapse

About Gulf Breeze Recovery:

Gulf Breeze Recovery, unlike other treatment centers in Florida, is a non 12 step holistic drug and alcohol rehab that is changing the future of addiction treatment with their THRIVE® (Total Health Recovery) program focused on overcoming chronic relapse.
Gulf Breeze Recovery’s THRIVE® program is a non 12-step approach designed for those who are looking for a drug and alcohol treatment program to produce a different and positive result.
This non-12 step program allows you to drive beyond your addictions and promotes a new outlook on life.
We are licensed by the Florida Department of Children and Families, and our last audit scored 99.7! Also, we are gold certified by the Joint Commission.

Program logo: Gulf Breeze Recovery offers a true non-12-Step, holistic drug treatment program with licensed mental health professionals who have small caseloads so that they can offer individualized and intensive care and it's called THRIVE®

End Chronic Relapse and Start a New Life!

At Gulf Breeze Recovery we don’t want you to have just a great recovery, we want you to have a great life!

Contact Us, or Call: (855) 433-4480

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