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Police Officers and Drug Addiction

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Police Officers and Drug Addiction

Police officers and other emergency workers such as first responders often face an increased risk of developing a drug addiction due to trauma. Some common triggers of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are often a part of daily life for police officers, including the following:

  • Exposure to death
  • Proximity to explosions and gunfire
  • Physical abuse and attacks
  • High-speed car chases

In addition to facing these PTSD triggers, police officers often have access to controlled substances, which can lead to an increased potential for drug addiction.

Challenges that Addicted Police Officers Face

Police officers often face unique challenges related to recognizing their need for addiction help and recovery, including the following:

Police Officers and Drug Addiction
  • The fear of losing one’s job or being ineligible for a promotion may keep officers from seeking help for addiction
  • The police force is traditionally a proud, self-reliant, and tough group of people who may especially struggle to admit that they need help
  • The uncertainty about where officers can turn to receive confidential assistance may keep them from seeking help

Confidential and Effective Addiction Treatment for Police Officers

In recent years, high-risk employment groups such as the police, military, EMTs, and other first responders have begun to accept the fact that PTSD should be identified and addressed as a disease. This disease is both physical and psychological and police officers who struggle with it should not be seen as weak by their coworkers or supervisors. With the proper help, an officer can find peace of mind and physical health after PTSD and addiction.

Effective recovery programs can confidentially treat officers with a variety of specialized therapies, including the following:

  • Private counseling
  • Family counseling, if applicable
  • Support group meetings
  • Education about the disease
  • Respite from the stress of the job
  • Spiritual and holistic care
  • Tactical training for ongoing recovery after treatment

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