The Forge Recovery Center

What Does a Trauma-informed Philosophy Mean?

Not everyone uses drugs for fun. For many, especially those who’ve experienced trauma, drugs are a form of emotional insulation. Addictive substances allow them to shut themselves off from reality, convincing themselves that everything is okay even though their substance abuse is making things worse.

Trauma is a major driver of substance abuse. When a person has painful, vivid memories of past traumas, self-medicating can be an easy choice. Worse, substance abuse itself is traumatic. Addiction puts a person at risk for everything from chronic disease to assault and murder. It also isolates a person from everything they value and love as careers, family, and friends are gradually pushed away.

A trauma-informed philosophy gives people in treatment for drug and alcohol addiction the time to recover from their past and present trauma.

What Does a Trauma-informed Philosophy Mean?

Trauma Informed Philosophy

Why Is a Trauma-informed Philosophy Important?

Nobody likes to admit they’re vulnerable, especially if they’re experiencing the trauma and isolation of addiction. It’s easy to see why; the word “vulnerable” means being open to attack. And yet, asking for help requires a person to admit they’re vulnerable and helpless in the face of addiction.

Recovery requires healthy and honest communication about a person’s thoughts and experiences. Sometimes, it means talking about their deepest fears. This requires a person to lower their defenses. Recognizing how important admitting vulnerability is in treatment, The Forge Recovery Center has carefully developed a trauma-informed philosophy addressing:

Emotional Safety:

Our staff at The Forge Recovery Center is mindful of trauma triggers, respects boundaries, and always asks permission first.

Physical Safety:

We’ve created a safe and welcoming environment that encourages healing. Our staff acts as companions to the people they serve on a journey to a happier life.

There is another reason a trauma-informed philosophy is necessary for addiction treatment. Many people in addiction feel trapped by their condition, past traumas, and even their surroundings. When we feel trapped, we feel unsafe, and under siege.

The Forge Recovery Center addresses this through the way we’ve developed our programming. By giving people a sense of choice and freedom, they’re able to gain a sense of control over their situation and themselves. They’re able to choose their therapist their programming groups, and even their living situations.

Ultimately, our staff are companions – we make decisions with, not decisions for.

Defining Trauma

Trauma, defined by the American Psychological Association, is exposure to actual or threatened acts involving death, serious injury, or sexual violation in the following ways:

Experiencing them directly

Being a witness to them

Having them happen to a close friend or family member

Having extreme or repeated exposure to details of such acts

Trauma is exceptionally harmful to children, studies show. Childhood exposure to trauma often results in mental illness, substance abuse, and even chronic disease.

Trauma can also be smaller. Relationship problems, unemployment, money problems, and fights with family are all capable of being traumatic without being life-threatening. As these events accumulate, these minor traumas can make us feel helpless and afraid.

Addiction creates all of these smaller traumas and often turns them into major trauma. Drug abuse isn’t just harmful to the health; its related traumas also cause grievous damage to an addicted person.

A trauma-informed philosophy is a must for effective, lasting addiction recovery.

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If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, there is hope. Our team can guide you on your journey to recovery. Call us today.