Stigmas abound within the world of substance abuse. These not so positive stereotypes are formed from bigoted opinions and prejudiced actions. Unfortunately, these beliefs can become internalized within clients. When a person truly believes negative things about themselves, it hinders treatment progress and leads to self-defaming behaviors.

Engaging in impulsive behaviors engaged when an individual is under the influence adds to stigmas. They can also lead to relationship problems and hinder job and educational opportunities. The possibility of equal rights become quenched. These stigmas increase the amount of personal shame an addict already endures.

Stigmas In Addiction

Only one out of every ten individuals with a substance use disorder gets treatment. Even though many stigmatized behaviors diminish during and after treatment these same actions can hinder individuals from seeking out treatment. Most individuals want to keep their addictions out of the public’s eye. Due to this, many families even avoid looking for help.

Addicts are often thought of as immoral human beings. Their behaviors are frequently treated by the legal system as criminal matters instead of a public health crisis. This also decreases the opportunity for individuals to get into opioid treatment programs, cannabis treatment programs, and alcohol treatment programs. Regardless of a majority medical agreement that addiction is a disease, there are public policies that discriminate against those who do seek help and manage long-term recovery. This can lead to many difficulties, including trouble finding housing, insurance, and continuing education.

Fighting Stigmas Through Person-First Wording

Words can be extremely hurtful. Labels perpetuate cognitions. Thoughts fuel emotions and behaviors. It is a vicious circle. By labeling a person as their disease, an individual begins to believe all they are is their addiction.

Utilizing “person-first wording,” such as, “An individual with an addiction to opiates,” can decrease the personal impact of these stigmas. The terminology “Drug habit” suggests that the individual has chosen to have a continued dependency on a substance. Calling a person an “addict” or “alcoholic” can work in the same manner.

In the same sense, not so positive wording during treatment can perpetuate stigmas. When a client does not pass a urinary drug screen, the word “positive” is preferred to the terms “dirty.” “Not presently utilizing” illicit substances versus “clean” is the better option. These terms can aid a client from believing they are dirty or negative.

Treatment for Substance Use Disorders

You deserve the chance to work through any shame and guilt you may have due to a substance use disorder. Do not let a stigma prevent you from getting the treatment you could be receiving. Discovery Place of Burns, Tennessee is just a phone call away. Our trained professionals are standing by to help you today. Contact us at 1-800-725-0922 to learn more about our various recovery program alternatives personalized for your own recovery. Family support is essential to aid a loved one in continued recovery. Al-Anon meetings and open Alcoholics Anonymous meetings are wonderful support networks in conjunction with Discovery Place. We will answer any questions you may have regarding substance use disorders.

Testimonials

  • Discovery Place was the answer for my son. He did the 90 day and then the step down program and sober living. We give this organization 10 stars. They met my son where he was …emotionally, mentally, physically. They helped him put his life back on track. Discovery Place employees care about their guests. If your son, brother, nephew, grandson or husband needs excellent supportive care THIS is indeed the facility.

    Kim Morton
    Alumni Parent
  • I have remained sober and it is because of DP. DP is the best place there is, hands down. I keep everyone there in my prayers, and I encourage everyone there to take what they are practicing and do it in their lives, after.

    Roy Mantelli
    Alumni
  • Over the past year, I’ve been putting into actin what Discovery Place taught me, and I have experienced a complete perspective change of the world, and the people in it. I get to be a man of service and love today, and for that I am grateful to Discovery Place.

    Matt Kassay
    Alumni
  • Discovery Place means the world to me. They showed me the tools that I’ve tried to use everyday in my life to think less often of myself, and more frequently of others. I am learning to lend a hand when I am able and to have a honest and humble relationship with God and the people around me. Not only am I clean and sober, but also I am happy and fulfilled.

    Tommy Parker
    Alumni
  • Discovery Place and the men who work there made recovery attractive, and more importantly, fun. There is strength in the struggle. I am forever grateful for my time at Discovery Place.

    Creed McClellan
    Alumni
  • When I got to Discovery Place my whole life was in shambles, but I didn’t know it. I spent 6 months in their programs, participating in all three phases, and was met with kindness and love all along the way. It is unbelievable to me, where I am now relative to where I was when I arrived at DP.

    Lance Duke
    Alumni
  • I can never say enough good things about Discovery Place and the people who work there. Before checking in to DP, I was out of options and out of answers. Fortunately, Discovery Place has a solution. Taking suggestions from the staff at DP saved my life, and as a result, I’m now more content and hopeful about life. I’m grateful for Discovery Place showing me how to live a healthy life so that I can become a better man and help the next guy.”

    Tyler Buckingham
    Alumni

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