Post-traumatic stress disorder is a very serious condition which can cause debilitating symptoms such as substance abuse, depression, and anxiety in those who are struggling with the inner turmoil that is caused by past traumatic experiences. If you or a loved one is struggling with PTSD as well as substance abuse, there are facilities which can help. Colorado has multiple PTSD treatment centers which specialize in the treatment of PTSD as well as substance abuse.
Trauma is defined as a deeply distressing and/or disturbing experience that can cause significant mental and emotional wounds for a person. The events which can cause trauma are numerous, but some of the most common occurrences are:
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Serious illness
- Military experience
- Witness to violence
- Death of a family member or friend
When these events occur in people’s lives, they can create post-traumatic stress if left unresolved. This post-traumatic stress can lead to many different forms of negative consequences in a person’s life, one of the most common is substance abuse. Those struggling with post-traumatic stress often turn to substances in an attempt to mask or medicate their distress.
Because of this relationship between PTSD and substance abuse, Colorado has multiple specialized PTSD treatment centers that provide programs specifically designed to help those struggling with PTSD and substance abuse overcome their issues and re-join society as healthy and happy individuals.
How is PTSD Treated?
PTSD and substance abuse require specialized forms of treatment which are performed by highly trained and experienced professionals. Because of these special needs, many normal treatment facilities are unable to offer the same level of care that specialized Colorado PTSD treatment centers are able to offer. Most of these facilities offer a combination of the following forms of treatment:
- EMDR – Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is a type of therapy which helps reprogram the brains response to traumatic memories. This is a highly specialized form of psychotherapy which must be provided by specially trained clinicians and has been shown to benefit those who struggle with PTSD greatly.
- Psychiatric medication – Certain classes of drugs, such as SSRIs, have been proven to be highly effective in treating many people with PTSD. These medications require a psychiatric assessment from a psychiatrist who will decide if the patient could benefit from these types of medications. If a psychiatrist prescribes psychiatric medication, the patient’s progress as they continue to take the medication must be closely monitored.
- Exposure therapy – Exposure therapy is a form of PTSD treatment which involves a patient working closely with a specialized therapist to learn how to manage the responses to past traumatic memories. Usually, the therapist will repeatedly talk with the patient about these past events and help them to control their negative responses and gradually train patients to display healthier, more positive responses to the traumatic memories.
- Group therapy – For those struggling with PTSD, group therapy led by a licensed counselor can also be extremely beneficial. Allowing multiple patients who struggle with PTSD to work together to overcome their issues allows for an individual to gain support not only from their counselor but also from people who are going through similar struggles on their own.
Recovering from PTSD
The goal for the treatment of PTSD is to improve the day-to-day life of a patient and significantly improve their ability to function in society normally by treating the core issues the person is struggling with and resolving their underlying trauma. Along with the extensive focus on treating the patient’s past trauma, licensed counselors also work hard to resolve co-occurring issues that may have resulted from the unresolved trauma such as substance abuse, depression, and anxiety.
Treating PTSD is by no means a one-size-fits-all approach. Because trauma can come from a multitude of different traumatic experiences, the best PTSD treatment centers in Colorado personalize an individual treatment plan in order to assure that the proper forms of trauma therapy are being utilized.
The overall goal is to return a sense of normalcy and stability to a person’s life by removing the debilitating post-traumatic stress which they may have been struggling with for years. With the help of a specialized Colorado PTSD treatment center, most people are able to recover fully from their issues and live normal and happy lives.
What to Look for in a Colorado PTSD Treatment Center
Because the treatment of PTSD requires such specialized treatment and must be provided by highly experienced licensed counselors, it is important to make sure that any facility you are considering for you or your loved one is able to offer the best level of care. It is crucial that whatever facility you choose is highly specialized in treating those with PTSD- as the environment at a standard treatment facility which does not have such a specialization may not only be ineffective but in some cases can cause the patient to regress even further.
Once you or your loved one has decided that a Colorado PTSD treatment center is right for them, there are a few important aspects to consider:
- Is the facility highly specialized in the treatment of PTSD as well as substance abuse?
- Are the counselors licensed and do they have experience treating those with PTSD?
- What forms of PTSD specific treatments does the program offer?
- How long is the program?
- Does the program accept my insurance?
- Is the facility accredited by an independent organization such as JACHO and/or CARF?
Navigating through the many various options for treatment centers can add considerable difficulty to what is usually an already stressful situation. Often times, it can be extremely beneficial to get help from someone with direct experience in helping people who are struggling with PTSD acquire treatment.
Here at Sober Times, we have a staff of experienced professionals who are available 24-hours a day to help you or your loved one find the best PTSD treatment center in Colorado. After an assessment is done, they will assess you or your loved one’s situation and specific needs and help place them in a facility immediately.