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Drug and Alcohol Rehabs for Law Enforcement & First Responders by State

Drug and Alcohol Rehabs for Law Enforcement & First Responders by State

Drug And Alcohol Rehabs For Law Enforcement & First Responders In the United States

Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation for Members of Law Enforcement within the United States

Members of law enforcement and other first responders face very high levels of stress, and are exposed different dangerous situations throughout his or her career. Despite these agencies offering internal services to their members, there is still a high percentage of members of law enforcement and first responders that turn to drugs and alcohol as a means to cope with the stress from the job. It has been reported within the United States that this particular group is increasingly suffering from substance abuse and other addictive problems that face the individual and or his or her family.

What type of specialized care is provided for police officers, firefighters, correction's officers, and EMTs?

Throughout the United States, there are numerous drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs that offer specific counseling and therapy for this group of individuals. This will include therapists and industry professionals whom have made a career out of helping law enforcement members work through moderate or serious addictions, and other psychological problems. Both residential and outpatient centers within the United States offer some of these services and programs, which do include detox for all types of addiction. Referrals to treatment will typically happen internally, unless the person is searching for help outside of their place of employment.

How is the coordination done with the employers?

Most drug and alcohol treatment centers who specialize in treating law enforcement members will coordinate with his or her employer by providing ongoing progress reports, assessments, and assisting them with transitioning back into their jobs. If the patient is seeking help directly through their employer, then this is a regular process where as the employer can ensure their law enforcement personnel can return to work, be healthy physically and mentally, and continue to succeed within their job. Because there is a great deal of on-going stress and contributing factors to these issues, there will always be help provided to law enforcement members who are struggling with addiction and other mental-health problems.

How the underlying mental health issues are handled along with the addiction?

It is very common that many law enforcement members will suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, anger problems, difficulty coping with violence, and intense guilt and shame. PTSD is a contributing factor, which keeps a person addicted to drugs and alcohol as it is very difficult to cope with the on-going stress and circumstances within the job. These underlying mental-health problems are specifically addressed by professionals with years of experience, who are qualified to treat all the primary problems, and help the patient become fully rehabilitated, and begin to lead a happy and successful life.

What is the relationship between addiction and emergency first responders?

Emergency responders are typically always first on the scene. Whether this is law enforcement, EMT’s, or fire and rescue. These are often dangerous and demanding situations. It can be providing care, support, and medical assistance for survivors, victims, or anyone caught in a crime or disaster. Those who work in the profession understand it can be strenuous and emotionally draining. Being exposed to life-threatening situations, physical strain, and devastation takes a toll. What most outsiders do not see, is the close relationship between addiction and first responders. Anyone who works within this profession is exposed to situations that would cause the average person to run for the hills.

The issues that first-responders struggle with often become intertwined with one another. According to the US Firefighters Association, roughly 10% of firefighters may be abusing drugs. Per the American Psychological Association, roughly 25% of police officers reported drinking to be part of the team. Along with this, it included 25% who were negatively affected by co-worker drinking. It is estimated that 36% of police officers will have developed alcohol-related problems after four years working in law enforcement. Emergency Medical Technicians are more at risk and according to the US National Library of Medicine, roughly 40% engage in high-risk alcohol abuse.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reported career firefighters had higher risks for alcohol abuse than volunteer firefighters. Yet, volunteer firefighters reported higher rates of suicide attempts. In 2017, roughly 50% of male firefighters reported binge Definition of the word binge alcohol drinking. For example, alcohol use among police officers after Hurricane Katrina. There was a significant association between hazardous drinking and hurricane relief efforts. Any time someone is turning to drugs and alcohol for self-medicating purposes, they will become addicted. There is a purpose behind using drugs and alcohol. The substances are solving emotional and physical problems. The mind and body become adjusted to this and the person becomes addicted to it.

Alcohol abuse, for example, is often one of the most common problems. According to the American Journal of Addiction, it was estimated that 7.8% of police officers abused alcohol. Yet in a larger study done by the Journal of Criminal Justice, it was estimated that over 30% of police officers had a drinking problem. The use of alcohol is often more accepted in these fields of profession. Much of this has to do with the frequent drug testing that is done. Drug testing is done regularly among EMT’s, firefighters, and police officers. However, heavy alcohol use often occurs of the job, and those who drink alcohol heavily are often not sanctioned. Any type of first responder struggling with an addiction should be seeking out help right away. There are many different types of drug rehab services across the country to help treat these addictions.


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Marcel Gemme

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Marcel Gemme has been helping people struggling with addiction for over 19 years. He first started as an intake counselor for a drug rehabilitation center in 2000. During his 5 years as an intake counselor, he helped many addicts get the treatment they needed. He also dealt with the families and friends of those people; he saw first-hand how much strain addiction puts on a family and how it can tear relationships apart. With drug and alcohol problems constantly on the rise in the United States and Canada, he decided to use the Internet as a way to educate and help many more people in both those countries. This was 15 years ago. Since then, Marcel has built two of the largest websites in the U.S. and Canada which reach and help millions of people each year. He is an author and a leader in the field of drug and alcohol addiction. His main focus is threefold: education, prevention and rehabilitation. To this day, he still strives to be at the forefront of technology in order to help more and more people.