Why Recovery Month Matters Now More Than Ever
September is National Recovery Month for Americans to help bring awareness to the growing concern of substance abuse and the devastating effects that it can have on a person’s life. While drug and alcohol addiction has been a concern for Americans for years, over the last two years, there has been a dramatic increase in individuals turning to drugs and alcohol as a way to cope. With the presence of a global pandemic, there became an increasing feeling of uncertainty and fear of the state of the world and the potential risks of COVID-19.
As the nation had to quarantine, there was a rising concern of individuals experiencing significant mental health concerns that led to many turning to substance abuse as a way of coping. Since 2020 and the onset of COVID-19, there has been a 23% increase in alcohol abuse and a 16% increase in drug abuse. Individuals who had to experience self-isolation reported a 26% increase in drug and alcohol abuse as a means of self-medicating and coping. Since 2020, every state in the United States has had a rise in overdose deaths, with a 33% increase in opioid overdose rates across the nation. With substance abuse at an alarmingly higher rate than ever, it is vital to open up communication and awareness about the impacts of alcohol or drug addiction to help bring awareness and knowledge of the addiction resources available to seek treatment and get the help needed to overcome addiction.
What Is National Recovery Month?
National Recovery Month began in 1989 by SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) to promote awareness and education about drug and alcohol addiction and mental health disorders. Throughout September, SAMHSA aims to highlight the effective, evidence-based therapy methods available to those individuals living with substance use disorders. It also increases awareness of the recovery community available to those looking to connect with others in addiction recovery and honors the dedication that service providers and community resources provide to those seeking addiction treatment support.
How to Get Involved in National Recovery Month
This year SAMHSA has started an initiative to help further awareness and understanding of substance abuse and recovery from addiction. Several events are being held across the nation to help promote education and understanding about evidence-based substance abuse treatments and celebrate individuals who have found their way in long-term recovery. The following are some ways that individuals can participate in national recovery month:
- September 7: Recovery Rally Happens in Sacramento, CA- Speaker Tom Coderre will be providing education and awareness about substance abuse and mental health disorders
- September 13: National Opioid and Substance Awareness Day- Virtual Town Hall will be held that offers panel discussions surrounding topics on opioid addiction and substance abuse
- September 20: National Addiction Professionals Day- A day to celebrate the dedication and support that substance abuse treatment programs provide individuals each day while promoting awareness of the addiction resources available
- Recovery Happens Art Show: This is an art show that is happening all month and showcases artwork that demonstrates the hope and strength that can come from recovery from addiction.
All month long during National Recovery Month in September, individuals can shine purple lights to commemorate their support for addiction treatment programs and in support of recovery month. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to WhiteSands Alcohol and Drug Rehab today to learn how to access addiction treatment options or how to join the National Recovery Month activities.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.