Military personnel and first responders experience unique stressors and traumas that put them at high risk for mental health concerns and substance use disorders. The trauma-focused care we provide at The Refuge, A Healing Place helps these brave professionals heal so that they can live more fulfilling lives.
Members of the military and first responders, such as police officers, firefighters, and EMTs, often experience prolonged exposure to potentially dangerous situations. These heroic professionals also have demanding physical job requirements, long work hours, and poor sleep schedules.
At The Refuge, A Healing Place, we understand how these factors, along with influences such as a person’s family history, personal experiences, and childhood trauma, can further compound these concerns for front-line and essential workers.
The combination of all these factors and influences can put a person at an increased risk for developing a behavioral health concern such as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, an anxiety disorder, or a substance use disorder.
When a first responder or member of the military is suffering from an addiction or mental health disorder, it can be devastating to their overall quality of life. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way.
Through the trauma-focused care we provide at our treatment center, military personnel and first responders can address the key concerns that have been making their lives unmanageable.
With appropriate care, they can learn to reduce their stress responses, gain new resources, and strengthen their resiliency, allowing them to start living the lives they deserve.
Who We Serve
The Refuge, A Healing Place is a gender-inclusive, trauma-focused facility for adults age 18 and older. Our expert team has extensive experience working with those who serve our country and their communities, and we have the utmost respect for individuals who put their lives on the line to help others in need.
We are proud to provide the highest-quality clinical care for:
- Active-duty military members
- Members of the Special Forces
- Veterans and their families
- Federal law enforcement officers
- Department of Justice employees
- State and local law enforcement officers
- Police officers
- Emergency medical technicians (EMTs)
- 911 dispatchers
Front-line professionals can receive care for a wide range of trauma-related behavioral health concerns, including:
- PTSD/complex PTSD
- Substance use disorders
- Anxiety disorders
- Suicidal ideation
- Eating disorders
- Emotional numbness
- Relationship struggles
- Low self-esteem
Prevalence of Trauma-Related Concerns
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) have reported the following statistics:
- Nearly 1 in 4 active-duty military members show signs of a behavioral health disorder.
- Research has found that the rate of PTSD among military personnel is 15 times higher than among the civilian population.
- The rate of depression among military members is five times higher than among the civilian population.
- About 30% of first responders develop behavioral health concerns such as depression or PTSD, compared with 20% of the general population.
- Studies have shown that the rates of suicidal ideation and suicide are much higher among firefighters, emergency medical services, and police officers than among the general population.
- Approximately half of male firefighters and nearly 40% of female firefighters reported binge drinking in the past month, compared with 12%-15% of women in the general population.
Signs & Symptoms of PTSD
No two people respond to trauma the same way, because each person has a different genetic background, life experiences, and resilience level.
For example, even if two first responders experience the same traumatic event, their initial responses and the subsequent long-term impact on their physical and emotional health may be different.
Not everyone who experiences trauma will develop posttraumatic stress disorder, but the more exposure a person has to prolonged trauma, the more likely they are to struggle with a mental health or substance use concern.
Some common signs and symptoms that may indicate that a military member or first responder is suffering from PTSD include:
- Behavioral – Agitation, irritability, hostility, hypervigilance, self-destructive behavior, social isolation, insomnia, or nightmares
- Psychological – Flashbacks, fear, severe anxiety, mistrust, emotional detachment, or unwanted or intrusive thoughts
- Mood – Loss of interest in or pleasure from activities, guilt, or loneliness
The effects of PTSD and other trauma-related disorders can feel completely overwhelming. But by receiving quality clinical care, a military member or first responder can live a whole and fulfilling life again.
At The Refuge, A Healing Place, we offer a full range of programming that is dedicated to treating those who are struggling with the impact of trauma.
We offer three levels of care to support our clients as they move through their treatment journey, including detoxification, residential treatment, and a partial hospitalization program (PHP) with lodging.
Each client collaborates with their treatment team to build a personalized plan of care that is tailored to meet their specific needs. In addition to individual therapy, psychiatry, and trauma process groups, programming they participate in may include:
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR)
- Accelerated resolution therapy (ART)
- Expressive art therapy
- Equine therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
- Narrative exposure therapy
- Experiential therapy
- Recreational therapy
Family programming is also available to support the loved ones of military members and first responders and to help mend these important relationships.