September is National Recovery Month

By Laura Niedringhaus, Clinical Outreach Manager

National Recovery Month is a national observance held every September to educate Americans that substance use treatment and mental health services can enable those with mental health and substance use disorders to live healthy and rewarding lives. Now in its 31st year, Recovery Month celebrates the gains made by those living in recovery and highlight communities that are providing critical recovery support and treatment. The observance reinforces the positive message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, prevention works, treatment is effective, and people and families can and do recover.

Camino a Casa addresses co-occurring disorders and identifies youth that demonstrate substance use, abuse, or dependence issues. Pathways to Recovery Program is one of the services provided where individuals receive weekly education groups to develop new coping skills, manage past use, and learn healthier ways of dealing with emotions. For some teens and adolescents, substance misuse often develops due to an underlying mental health issue. The problem is complex – and many people perceive mental health and substance use disorders as separate disorders, and each is differently stigmatized.

Another resource for Camino a Casa’s Pathways to Recovery is an AA panel, which occurs at the campus (now via Zoom) twice a month. The guests on the panel recall their experiences during adolescence and openly share personal struggles with low self-esteem and social anxiety, which led to self-medication and problems with alcohol and drugs. There are similarities in feelings among peers and often the stories resonate with the kids. Some underlying issues and experiences they recall are cultural influences, performance pressures, not feeling comfortable in their own skin, and more. Listening to the encouragement and real-life success stories from the young adults in sobriety inspire the youth in treatment and give them hope.

Over the next month, we will highlight some of our staff and the ways they help youth with co-occurring disorders through the Camino a Casa program.

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