A trauma-informed approach to alcohol and drug treatment
is helpful to many patients in a gender specific setting. In women-only alcohol and drug treatment
, trauma has been reported to be an issue for as high as 90% of the client census by some providers. So staff members must be trauma informed in order to help them begin the recovery process.
According to the National Trauma Consortium, trauma is defined as:
Trauma means experiencing, witnessing, or being threatened with an event or events that involve actual serious injury, a threat to the physical integrity of one’s self or others, or possible death. The responses to these events include intense fear, helplessness, or horror.
-- Source: http://www.nationaltraumaconsortium.org/documents/IntegratedTrauma.pdf --
Understanding what trauma is and what it does to an individual helps alcohol and drug treatment counselors to empathize with patients when it is present. Since most trauma sufferers don’t immediately verbalize the problem, or are unaware of it, being trauma-informed helps staff to note behaviors that indicate it. This influences the proper approach in counseling sessions and group settings.
Women suffer trauma in higher percentages than men in alcohol and drug treatment. It is likely that in gender-specific treatment
the majority of patients have had a traumatic experience while active in their alcohol dependence
or drug addiction
. When this is the case, groups and one-on-one sessions need to include discussions on trauma in a manner that helps every patient.
Counselors need to be aware of which patients, and how many, have suffered trauma. Especially in a group setting, trauma patients are unlikely to be open about their pain. However, when patients know they are not alone and a majority of their peers can relate to them, an opportunity for open discussion is presented. The topic can be suggested by a group facilitator, although it is best to let patients present their own pain.
When counselors are not trauma-informed, important treatment objectives may be overlooked and will certainly not be properly treated. It is necessary to include mental health treatment
since trauma is considered a co-occurring disorder
. Also, the reason for their trauma may include health issues resulting from alcohol
or drug abuse
, so primary medical care
and HIV services
should also be a part of treatment.
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles
provides all of the services mentioned above as part of our commitment to integrated behavioral healthcare
. They are all offered individually or included in alcohol or drug treatment. If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence or drug addiction, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here
Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California
in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.