Tough events like the global pandemic, political and civil tensions, and even natural disasters can trigger negative feelings. Unfortunately, people such as veterans use drugs and alcohol as a way to cope with these feelings and are unable to cope with exercise, hobbies, and family. Veterans need to seek treatment even during these confusing times to ensure they maintain their sobriety and a healthy mind.

The Challenge of Regular Drug Testing

Noncommissioned Officer Master Sgt. Cesar J. Garcia of the ARD Deterrence/Drug Testing Program said that there were 1.6 million specimens received last year for drug tests. This year, there was only 1.3 million which is a 300,000 specimen difference. The significant decrease in drug testing is because of canceled or delayed drills for current soldiers. With the increase in more alcohol-related incidents and alcohol misuse, drug testing still needs to be considered a priority during this time.

Increase in Drug and Alcohol Use Towards Veterans

Even if a veteran has not shown signs of addiction before, it can be easy to want a quick fix when you are triggered by all these negative events. The pandemic is not making it easy to find human connection when it comes to 12-step meetings or support groups, making addiction go untreated. A lot of locations for meetings have been shut down which can make veterans who have been successful in recovery quickly relapse back into old habits. Even though 12-step meetings have shut down, liquor stores and drug dealers have been remaining in business.

What Veterans Can Do

It is important to remember that while veterans may not be able to see people in-person just yet, they can still get together with people virtually. There are several websites where they can have virtual 12-step and support group meetings. Telehealth counselors can also speak to them through video chat. Speaking to a counselor can be beneficial to finding the source of your drug addiction and the steps you can take moving forward. Talking to a close friend or family member will make feeling supported much easier during your recovery. Veterans can take advantage of their internet access to educate themselves on the dangers of drugs and the right path to take to ensure a successful recovery. Even during a pandemic and political turmoil, help is always available and you do not have to go through addiction recovery alone.

Veterans are going through battles of their own while being home during a pandemic. Negative feelings tend to trigger drug use even if you have had a successful recovery. Just because in-person communication is gone for now does not mean that we need to abandon our recovery plan. At Alta Loma, our facilities will give you the tools to make sure you stick with a personalized plan that will ensure a successful recovery. Located in Georgetown, Texas, we offer individualized therapy, 12-step programs, life coping skills education, and more. Please give us a call at 866-457-3843 for more information.