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Now that 2021 is over you might feel like starting with a clean slate. And that might mean addressing any substance use issues you've developed during the pandemic. Numerous studies such as this one show that substance use increased during the pandemic and is now a problem for an increasing number of people.
Landlocked Tennessee has a population of 6.8 million, and has been listed among the bottom 10 states for healthcare quality for over a decade. As of 2020, the state ranks 40th in the nation for healthcare quality, ease of access to healthcare, and the overall health of its population.
Although healthcare is not currently a strong suit of the state that's home to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, mental health and alcohol and drug addiction in Tennessee are two areas of particular priority.
In 2020, Tennessee ranked 28th in the nation for its prevalence of mental illness and access to mental healthcare for adults. The annual report from Mental Health America examines data trends in categories relating to the prevalence of mental illness, substance use disorder, thoughts of suicide, and access to care for both adults and adolescents.
While being placed 28th out of 50 states and the District of Columbia might not seem impressive, this statistic has been greatly encouraging to Tennesseans because it represents an upward jump of 11 spots when compared to the 2019 numbers. This was the 4th largest improvement among all states that rose in the rankings in 2020.
Despite this recent improvement in mental healthcare, Tennessee remains greatly challenged by substance abuse issues. Prescription drug abuse, in particular, is a grave concern. The state has the third highest opioid dispensing rate in the nation, surpassed only by Alabama and Arkansas. Similarly, the number of overdose deaths involving opioids has been steadily climbing since 1999. Across all age groups, the state also has a higher than average rate of alcohol-impaired driving deaths.
What to Know About Addiction Treatment in Tennessee
In 2018, Tennessee had 221 facilities providing substance abuse treatment services. Considering the size of the state's population, it does not have an especially high ratio of drug rehab centers to residents, and yet you can still find quality addiction treatment for yourself or a loved one if you do a little research.
One of the first things to decide when looking for a recovery center is whether an inpatient or outpatient program is the best fit. Many healthcare professionals and recovering addicts are of the opinion that severe addictions are best treated in a residential treatment center where the patient lives with 24/7 emotional and logistical support from trained staff. Inpatient treatment also includes individual and group therapy, behavioral therapy, specialized trauma support if needed, re-integration education and transition services.
On the other hand, outpatient treatment is typically better suited for people experiencing a less severe addiction, navigating a relapse with an already strong support system, or for people who are not willing to temporarily live away from the familiarity of their home environment.
Of course, cost is also a factor in most people's decisions when selecting at drug treatment facility, but keep in mind that most facilities accept a variety of payment options, including Medicaid, Medicare, and private health insurance. Additionally, in Tennessee, 142 rehab programs offer a sliding fee scale and 42% offer free treatment or only minimal charges to clients who can't pay the standard fees.
Find Addiction Treatment in Nashville
There are 118 intensive outpatient programs (IOP) in the state, stretching from Memphis in the west, to Chattanooga in Middle Tennessee, and Sevierville on the eastern edge of the state,
While each facility implements its own protocols and recommendations, most IOP typically involve attendance at a rehab facility for 4-6 hours a day, over the course of a few weeks or up to 90 days. This time is spent on things like medical detox, group and individual therapy to understand the core issues behind the addiction, relapse prevention education, and activating transitional support services.
Although most people associate the word 'addiction' with alcohol and drug abuse, there are many other forms of addiction that can be treated at intensive outpatient programs or even at residential inpatient facilities. Some of these other forms of addiction include:
- Online sex addiction
- Internet addiction
- Plastic surgery addiction
- Risky behavior addiction
Nashville, Tennessee's most populated city, is home to numerous addiction treatment programs for adults and young adults experiencing chemical or non-chemical addiction. Some of these facilities offer programming specifically for certain groups like members of the LGBTQ+ community, former military personnel, or people recovering from sexual trauma.
One of these targeted programs in Nashville is The Next Door. The Next Door centers women in its substance abuse services framework and provides a faith-based environment for those who find comfort in integrating spiritual beliefs into their recovery journey.
Helpful Addiction Treatment Resources in Memphis
Known worldwide as the home of blues and the birthplace of rock n' roll, Memphis is the county seat of Shelby County, which has a population of almost one million people.
Since 2011, Shelby County has seen a sharp increase in the number of opioid overdose deaths, exceeding the number of deaths due to car accidents in the county for many of those years. Due to its prevalence, most recovery programs in the state are equipped to treat opioid addiction and all other chemical addictions, but some have chosen to customize their treatment regimen for detox and recovery for specific drugs.
For instance, as its name suggests, the Cocaine and Alcohol Awareness Program (CAAP) focuses entirely on the treatment of cocaine and alcohol abuse. With a strong emphasis on community-based initiatives, CAAP is one of the largest behavioral health and co-occurring mental health disorder service providers in the state. They offer outpatient treatment, residential and extended residential treatment programs, as well as specialized residential options for homeless veterans.
Finding Addiction Treatment in Knoxville
As of 2018, Tennessee's alcohol consumption and binge drinking rates were below the national average, but data is being collected to gauge the perceived spike in heavy drinking due to COVID-19. If ongoing studies confirm this theory, increased rates of alcohol addiction might become a problem for the state of Tennessee and many states throughout the nation.
While its rates of alcohol poisoning and binge drinking are not yet particularly striking, Tennessee is one of the three worst states for opioid prescription dispensations and opioid overdose deaths. If you see yourself, or someone you care about, in these statistics because of an opioid addiction, help is available. Compassionate and certified healthcare professionals want to help you return to sober living.
One such provider is Cherokee Health Systems in Knoxville, TN. They employ a Complex Care model, which includes a spectrum of specialized services for substance abuse, including intensive care management, intensive outpatient programs, and aftercare support for establishing and maintaining a sober lifestyle as well as ongoing care for lifelong conditions (e.g. diabetes, hypertension, COPD.) Cherokee is also distinct because of its specialized pre-natal, postpartum, and pediatric care services for pregnant women and new mothers who are addicted to opiates.
Physical Therapy Treatment in Tennessee
Physical health is closely intertwined with mental and emotional health, which is why many people have found that physical therapy plays an important role in their drug and alcohol rehab process and in the aftercare that supports them to maintain a sober lifestyle.
Physical therapy is a much broader speciality than most people realize. By treating a wide range of muscle and joint injuries or disorders, physical therapy can provide pain relief and significant mobility improvements for people whose ability to operate comfortably has been impacted by:
- Orthopedic and sports injuries
- Pelvic injuries
- Balance and movement disorders
- Lymphedema management, and others.
Physical therapy is frequently required after surgery, to restore motion, strength and function. Whether you or a family member has undergone or is planning to undergo a surgical procedure, or has been living with physical discomfort for a long period of time, one well regarded physical therapy provider you can consider in Murfreesboro, TN is Donnelly Physical Therapy. They specialize in orthopedic muscle tears and strains, such as:
- Rotator cuff injuries
- Tennis elbow
- Golfer's elbow
- Hamstring injuries
- Iliotibial band (ITB) injuries
- Arthritis pain
- Plantarfasciltis and spine-related pain.
Mental Health Support Services in Tennessee
While mental health and mental illness are broad terms that encompass a wide range of conditions, two of the most well known mental health challenges are anxiety and depression. 29.8% of adults in Tennessee reported symptoms of anxiety and/or depressive disorder in 2021.
When mental health difficulties occur in conjunction with a drug or alcohol addiction, the complexity of that person's treatment plan increases and requires thoughtful, skilled care. To receive this kind of specialized support, more and more people are opting for detox programs that include targeted mental health treatment, or they choose to participate in a dedicated mental health rehab program after their drug rehab experience.
If you or a family member are considering checking into an outpatient or inpatient mental health treatment program, it might be helpful to research and learn a bit more about the treatment processes you'll find when you arrive.
A variety of treatment options are available, based on the individual's needs and personal preferences. For example, one tool commonly found on many treatment plans is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). This is a type of talk therapy that identifies distorted thought patterns and beliefs and reshapes them into more functional and adaptive ones.
Some mental health rehab programs also offer more holistic options like experiential therapy, art and music therapy, but the average mental health rehab program typically involves some of all of the following:
- Individual behavioral therapy
- Group therapy
- Inpatient or outpatient psychiatric care
- Psychotropic medications
- Partial hospitalization
- Intensive outpatient groups for co-occurring disorders
One local mental health services provider to consider is Kindbridge in Chattanooga. They offer tele-therapy treatments for children, adults, couples, and families, addressing conditions like anxiety, depression, mood disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, LGBTQ issues, gambling disorder, video gaming disorder, and many others.
Treatment Program Resources
Seeking assistance with mental health challenges and/or addiction is a brave decision that should be commended. However, there are many factors to consider to ensure that you select the right treatment location and program for yourself or your loved one. If you're having a hard time wading through all the details, we're here to help.
On Rehab.com, you'll find information on how to identify and treat substance abuse, such as alcohol dependence and opioid addiction, so that you can find detoxification and recovery programs in your area and start on the road to long-term recovery.
Of course, mental health goes hand in hand with physical health. So whether you're looking for individual therapy in an outpatient setting or residential treatment inpatient program, we can help you find the right mental health and physical therapy services for your needs and budget.
Get Help in Tennessee Now
Selecting the right addiction treatment center, alcohol treatment center, mental health treatment center, or physical therapy treatment provider in Tennessee is that much easier thanks to Rehab.com
- Call our 24/7 helpline and speak with a care coordinator today: 1-888-702-1717
- Use our match with care feature to find a treatment center near you. We'll help narrow your search based on your geographic location, timeline, budget, and specific personal needs.
- Explore the 32,000+ facilities listed on Rehab.com to find the right one for you or your loved one.
Addiction is a serious issue in the LGBTQ community. So many of our loved ones, friends, and family have had to struggle with this medical condition without the support that they need.
Despite that, there are programs out there today that can help LGBTQ individuals with addiction start their recovery.
Here's a basic guide to getting sober in the LGBTQ community.
Challenges to Getting Sober in the LGBTQ Community
There are plenty of barriers to finding addiction treatment in our society, but the LGBTQ community faces some of the most serious societal barriers. We know this from personal experience, but international research also backs it up.
The Social Barriers to Treatment are Real
The LGBTQ community faces the same systemic barriers as everyone else with added unique challenges. Economic concerns, social barriers, and even the fight against hate crimes come into play when we consider addiction treatment.
Intersectional issues, such as race, class, and gender, also are obstacles to finding addiction treatment.
The good news is that groups are working to help LGBTQ individuals get treatment for substance use disorder.
The Importance of Treatment
Getting treatment for substance use disorder can help with everything from simply improving their quality of life to lowering the chance of life-threatening complications.
Research continues to demonstrate that rates of substance use disorder are higher for LGBTQ individuals than for members of the general population.
One study found that 86.4% of LGBTQ individuals with addiction do not have access to the addiction treatment they need. This is a substantial gap.
One Good Sign
There are some good signs on the horizon for the LGBTQ community. There is research that suggests that LGBTQ individuals are more likely to seek treatment for substance use disorder than their cisgender or heterosexual counterparts.
This is often despite the serious social barriers we've been talking about. Overcoming institutionalized homophobia and transphobia is no small task, but there are members of our LGBTQ community who are helping each other find the treatment they need.
What to Do When it’s Time to Get Sober
If you're reading this blog, then you've already taken the first steps towards recovery and sobriety. Searching for information on how to find treatment means you’ve already begun your journey towards recovery.
Here's some information that can help you understand the basics of getting sober.
Learn the Basic Types of Substance Abuse Disorder Treatment
There are many types of treatment programs for addiction. Successful addiction rehab often combines more than one, so it's important to understand the basic differences of the most popular types of treatment when you start looking for a plan.
All of these plans are designed to help you achieve your goals. Different plans cater to different needs and can help you balance recovery with the other responsibilities in your life.
There are many different treatment methods—behavioral therapy, medication-assisted treatment, 12-step facilitation—but two basic programs:
- Inpatient treatment: People stay in a residential facility throughout treatment, including eating and sleeping. This lets you focus on your recovery alongside a group of peers who are also working through their substance use disorder.
- Outpatient treatment: People visit the treatment center several times a week or daily, then go home. People in outpatient treatment usually have less severe addictions or already made progress toward their recovery. Outpatient programs allow individuals to maintain work, school, and social responsibilities while working on their recovery.
Addiction is a treatable, medical, condition that can be successfully managed with the right treatment program.
Getting Sober in a Community
A big part of sobriety is about finding or creating a community where you can safely and successfully practice sobriety. People, places, and situations associated with past substance use can trigger a relapse. Peer support is an important part of the recovery process.
This can be challenging in the LGBTQ community. Finding a group of individuals to understand and accept your identity while also supporting your recovery process can be difficult.
What to Look for in a Drug Rehab Center
There are a few things you should look for in an addiction treatment program.
First, find a program that is certified and accredited by independent organizations. It should also have experienced and certified treatment professionals.
It's important to find a program that offers treatment plans that can help you reach your goals. You also want to find a treatment center that openly stands up for supporting the recovery of individuals in the LGBTQ community.
These are the factors that come together to make the best alcohol rehab center.
Finding LGBTQ Addiction Treatment in Arizona
There are options for addiction treatment throughout Arizona. You can find LGBTQ addiction support groups in Arizona in major cities like Tucson and Phoenix. There are also options for finding a drug rehab center in Arizona that supports the LGBTQ community in more northern communities in the state like Flagstaff.
Reaching out to an alcohol and drug rehab center is your first step in getting the care that you need.
- Ontario.cmha.ca - Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans & Queer identified People and Mental Health
- Cdc.gov - Substance Use (Gay and Bisexual Men's Health)
- samhsa.gov - 2019 National Survey On Drug Use And Health: Lesbian, Gay, & Bisexual (LGB) Adults
- Drugabuse.gov - Substance Use and SUDs in LGBTQ Populations
- Drugabuse.gov - Types of Treatment Programs: Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment: A Research-Based Guide (Third Edition)
- Drugabuse.gov - Treatment and Recovery (Drugs, Brains, and Behavior: The Science of Addiction)
- Samhsa.gov - Recovery and Recovery Support
- Sunshinebehavioralhealth.com - Alcohol Rehab Huntington Beach, CA
- Gayandsober.org - Meeting Finder Arizona
About 12 million Americans from all walks of life identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning (LGBTQ). These individuals experience problems with alcohol and drugs at higher rates than the rest of the population, perhaps in response to social pressures, lack of acceptance, or discrimination.
Whether you’re concerned about a friend’s or family member’s substance use or you’re evaluating your own use of drugs or alcohol, you are not alone. Reaching out for support takes strength, and seeking treatment is the first step toward recovery.
Everyone who has a substance use disorder is dealing with a unique set of challenges, but there are some common experiences among the LGBTQ community.
The process of self-identifying as LGBTQ is a unique and personal experience. For some, expressing or accepting an LGBTQ identity can be confusing, frightening, or uncomfortable. Many LGBTQ individuals may worry about the reactions of their family members, co-workers, and friends — and may experience strained relationships or even rejection. Some people may turn to drugs and alcohol to relieve the stress of various stages of the coming out process, or to cope with a negative reaction to revealing their identity.
No matter where they live or the degree of acceptance and support they receive from their friends and family, many people who identify as LGBTQ encounter homophobia and discrimination at some point in their lives. There are many ways in which this type of discrimination can make itself known. People who are uncomfortable with the LGBTQ community may distance themselves from friends or family members when they come out. Employers or co-workers who are biased against the LGBTQ community may find ways to avoid hiring or supporting career advancement for LGBTQ workers. Unfortunately, gender identity is not a federally protected class, so in some states people can be fired from their jobs for simply being a part of the LGBTQ community. In addition, some criminals target LGBTQ individuals: In 2015, more than 1,000 reported hate crimes resulted from a sexual orientation bias. Survivors of violent crimes, such as sexual assault, often experience symptoms of mental health conditions like depression and PTSD.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, for some people, coping with homophobia may be traumatic and can lead to feelings of shame or anxiety about their identity. LGBTQ individuals may use drugs or alcohol to mask unpleasant feelings or memories associated with experiencing homophobia. In addition, some people who develop a dependence on drugs or alcohol may resist seeking help, fearing that admitting to an addiction will add another minority status to their sexual or gender identity.
StartYourRecovery.org is an important resource for individuals who may be struggling with substance use disorder.
For more background, visit StartYourRecovery.org, a groundbreaking website developed by bringing together experts in substance misuse treatment from leading nonprofit, academic, and government institutions.
Through this important resource, individuals can hear stories from people with similar life experiences, discover the answers they need for recognizing and dealing with substance misuse, and locate support. You can learn more here.
Drug addiction, also called substance use disorder, is a serious disease that makes you feel unable to control your drug use. It can affect anyone. However, addiction is most common in marginalized communities, including the LGBTQ+ community.
Prevalence Of Addiction In The LGBTQ+ Community
Overall, members of the LGBTQ+ community face a much higher risk of drug use and addiction compared to the general public.
For example, the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) found that:
- 64.7% of lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) adults used alcohol in the past year, compared to 55.3% of the overall adult population
- 37.6% of LGB adults used marijuana in the past year, compared to 16.2% of the overall adult population
- 9% of LGB adults used heroin in the past year, compared to 3.8% of the overall adult population
Similarly, a study published in the Journal of School Health found that transgender students are 2.5 times more likely to use cocaine and methamphetamine and twice as likely to abuse prescription pain medications compared to their cisgender (non-transgender) peers.
These higher rates of drug use lead to higher rates of drug addiction. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 20 to 30% of LGBTQ+ individuals experience drug addiction, compared to only 9% of the general population.
Why Is Addiction More Common In The LGBTQ+ Community?
Drug addiction always starts with drug abuse. People are more likely to abuse drugs when they experience stress. As a marginalized group, the LGBTQ+ community faces significant stressors, such as:
- fears about coming out
- rejection and/or abuse from family members
- shame or self-hatred due to abuse from others
- workplace discrimination that can lead to job loss or lack of promotion
- hate crimes, including physical and sexual assault
These challenges can cause serious mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts. To cope, many LGBTQ+ people turn to alcohol or other drugs. This type of self-medication usually leads to addiction.
What Recovery Challenges Does The LGBTQ+ Community Face?
When seeking addiction treatment, members of the LGBTQ+ community face some unique challenges, including:
Co-Occurring Mental Health Disorders
As mentioned above, many LGBTQ+ people experience mental health disorders due to discrimination and other stressors.
If they try to treat their drug addictions without also treating their co-occurring mental health disorder(s), they’re likely to relapse (start using drugs again).
Discrimination From Health Care Providers
Many LGBTQ individuals fear that their addiction treatment providers will judge or mistreat them. This fear may prevent them from seeking treatment in the first place.
Moreover, even if a treatment provider doesn’t discriminate against LGBTQ+ people, they might not understand the unique challenges LGBTQ+ people face, such as homophobia, transphobia, and family issues.
In many cases, these issues contribute to drug abuse and addiction. Thus, if they aren’t addressed during treatment, the patient faces a high risk of relapse.
Some residential treatment centers deny transgender individuals from living with people who share their gender identity.
In other words, a transgender woman may be forced to live in a residential facility for men, or vice versa. This situation can cause extreme discomfort and threaten the trangender person’s safety.
Similarly, staff at residential centers may not know how to administer or monitor hormone use in transgender people undergoing hormone therapy. Without proper access to hormones, a transgender person may experience serious mental health issues, including suicidal thoughts.
Addiction Treatment Options For The LGBTQ+ Community
Due to the above challenges, most LGBTQ+ people have a harder time finding addiction treatment compared to the general population. Fortunately, many addiction treatment centers have started offering programs designed specifically for LGBTQ+ people.
These programs are run by health care providers who understand the complex needs of the LGBTQ+ community.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment
For example, due to the high rates of mental illness among the community, most LGBTQ+-specific programs offer dual diagnosis treatment. This type of treatment addresses other mental health issues that occur alongside drug addiction.
Like traditional addiction treatment programs, LGBTQ+-specific programs offer both inpatient and outpatient treatment.
Inpatient treatment is recommended for people with moderate to severe addictions, while outpatient programs may work for those with milder addictions and strong support systems at home.
Whether inpatient or outpatient, an LGBTQ+-specific-program will include therapy to help you recover from drug addiction, alcohol abuse, and any co-occurring mental health concerns.
Your therapist can also teach you coping skills to deal with stressful or traumatic experiences surrounding your LGBTQ+ identity.
Other Treatment Services
Along with therapy, your treatment plan may include services such as:
- medical detox, where doctors will help you safely stop using drugs
- medication-assisted treatment, where you’ll receive medications that help you recover from addictions to alcohol, tobacco, or opioids
- support groups, where you can connect with other LGBTQ+ people recovering from drug addiction
If you or a loved one identifies as LGBTQ+ and struggles with drug addiction, please contact an Ark Behavioral Health specialist to learn about our substance abuse treatment options.