What is Salute To Recovery: A Specialized Rehab Program for Veterans

Many veterans struggle with addiction due to physical injuries, depression, anxiety, and PTSD. Sadly, substance abuse is often a way for veterans to cope with these issues. In fact, an assessment conducted by the United States government indicates that close to 14% of veterans from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars are affected by post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD, which is one of the major risk factors for alcohol and drug use disorder.1,2

Substance use disorders are slightly more prevalent among veterans than in the civilian population. There is a higher rate of illicit drug use among former active-duty military personnel. Among veterans who reported using a substance within a month, 3.5% used marijuana while 1.7% used other illicit drugs.3

Even more alarmingly, substance abuse is often the precursor to suicidal tendencies during service. Since 2003, alcohol or drugs have been involved in 45 percent of suicide attempts, in addition to 30 percent of Army suicides. Moreover, 20% of deaths associated with high-risk behavior were caused by alcohol and illegal drug overdoses.3

The good news is that there are numerous veteran rehab programs that can help. It is possible for vets to overcome their addictions and rebuild their lives with the help of programs such as the Salute to Recovery veteran rehab program.


How Does the Salute To Recovery Veteran Program Work?

Veterans with substance abuse issues can benefit from Salute to Recovery, a substance abuse treatment program created specifically for former active-duty personnel. Program development, management, and design are done by veterans with addiction recovery experience. There are a large number of veterans who are either recovered or in recovery in the community who can offer guidance and support as part of the program, which uses evidence-based treatment methods.4

There are a number of treatment modalities available in the program, including counseling, music therapy, group sessions and trauma counseling. Salute to Recovery participants can also choose from a variety of courses aimed at preventing relapse or helping veterans regulate their emotions. Treatment methods based on evidence-based research have shown to be effective when it comes to helping veterans deal with their addiction.4

Salute to Recovery provides veterans with a supportive community as well as effective treatment options in order to help them overcome the most common difficulties they face. In the program, veterans struggling with substance abuse can find the help and resources they need to overcome it. By participating in the program, veterans are able to regain control of and rebuild their lives.4

The difficulties veterans are most often faced with include stress and solitude. Since service life is often demanding, they are often faced with stress while on active military duty. After leaving the military, veterans often experience isolation and loneliness, which can further exacerbate the accumulated stress. As a result, veterans may feel misunderstood by the civilian population and have trouble fitting back in. The feelings of isolation can result in mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety. Furthermore, stationed service members rely on alcohol to cope with feelings of stress and isolation, a habit they often carry with them following discharge.5

Veterans often attempt to treat the symptoms of mental health issues on their own by abusing substances. Substance abuse, however, only exacerbates the veteran’s problems. As a result, they can lose their jobs, suffer financial hardships, and have relationship problems. In addition, it can cause various physical health problems.6

Salute to Recovery may be the right program for any veteran dealing with addiction. Recovery First Treatment Center specializes in the treatment of people suffering from alcohol and drug addiction, and offers the Salute to Recovery program. The center offers inpatient and outpatient programs for veterans who are struggling to cope both with addiction and co-occurring mental health issues such as PTSD. Located in Miami, Florida, the facility is part of the American Addiction Centers (AAC) treatment network.4

Who Can Sign up for Salute to Recovery?

Those who are struggling with addiction and have served in the military are welcome to seek help through Salute to Recovery. Veterans can benefit from a wide range of programs and services that help them deal with substance abuse. Salute to Recovery is open to veterans of all military branches, as well as the following:4

  • Police officers.
  • Medical service providers who provide emergency medical care.
  • Firefighters.
  • Dispatchers.

First responders and military veterans who have suffered from substance abuse should pursue treatment as the effects of addiction can be devastating, both mentally and physically. The substance abuse problem must be addressed as soon as it is recognized. By receiving treatment, these individuals can regain their health and well-being and prevent substance use from damaging their lives further.7

Why Is The Salute To Recovery Program Important?

As part of Salute to Recovery, veterans and emergency responders receive educational and rehabilitation services. Participants in the program learn how to deal with anger, stress, and anxiety through a variety of courses. In addition to counseling services, the program offers group counseling.

Among the program’s core teachings are:

  • Military And First Responder Culture: This program provides an insight into first responder and military culture. It is important for participants to understand the stresses and challenges associated with these vocations.Apart from PTSD, suicide, and substance abuse, the course covers a variety of other topics.4
  • Managing Relationships With Friends, Family and Loved Ones: This program assists participants with managing their friendships and family relationships. In the course, veterans will learn how to communicate, resolve conflicts, and set healthy boundaries.4
  • Managing Hypervigilance: During life-threatening situations, hypervigilance helps military and first responders prioritize important information. However, it may trigger inappropriate or dangerous responses in the absence of a threat. The program can help veterans understand how hypervigilance works, when it is appropriate and how to deal with symptoms of hypervigillance.8
  • Values and Character: Developing these traits is one of the major goals of the program. Respect, integrity, and accountability are among the topics covered in the course.4
  • Stress Management: Traumatic events cause stress as part of the natural coping process. A key component of the program is teaching participants to identify the signs and effects of stress, as well as how to successfully manage it.4
  • Response to Trauma: Through the program, participants learn how people cope with trauma in different ways. The program will examine traumatic events including grief, recovery from traumatic experiences, and survivor guilt.4

Which Treatments are Included in the Salute to Recovery Program?

Many veterans are affected by addiction. It is not uncommon for veterans to return from service suffering from mental and physical health issues which drive them to addiction. Salute to Recovery offers veterans a variety of services and programs to help them overcome addiction, in addition to providing support to their families.4

Substance abuse can be treated with a variety of medical procedures, counseling, and 12-step programs that are evidence-based. All of these treatments are available through Salute to Recovery, in addition to services that can facilitate participants’ recovery, such as the following:

Supervised Medical Detox

Veterans who suffer from substance abuse and addiction may require a medically supervised detoxification (detox) before beginning treatment for their addiction. Detox can be dangerous, and veterans must receive care in a safe and supportive environment. A detox is crucial for veterans suffering from opioid abuse, since they must undergo a detox before continuing treatment. Over 595,000 U.S. veterans abuse opioids every year, prescribed or otherwise, based on data from 2019.4,9

Educational Programs for PTSD

Veterans with PTSD often struggle to readjust to civilian life. Many feel isolated and alone, not knowing where to turn for help. It is important that veterans have access to education and resources about PTSD so they can get the support they need.4

Salute to Recovery offers a comprehensive PTSD education program as part of their substance abuse treatment. The program helps veterans understand the condition and how to manage their symptoms. This is an important part of treatment, as education can help veterans get the support they need to recover from PTSD and quit relying on self-medication with substance use.4

The Salute to Recovery program offers a variety of evidence-based treatments. Please contact a nearby treatment center if you or somebody you know needs help.

A 12-Step Program

12-step programs are one important part of addiction treatment. These programs provide a supportive community of veterans who are going through or have gone through similar experiences and faced similar challenges. They can provide guidance and encouragement during the recovery process.4,7

Anger Management Classes

Anger management for veterans can be a difficult task. For many, anger is a natural response to the horrors of combat. It can be hard to control those emotions.4

Anger management classes for veterans can be very helpful in learning how to cope with anger healthily. The classes can provide a safe place for veterans to share their experiences and feelings and learn how to deal with anger constructively. The classes can also help veterans connect with others who have shared similar experiences and provide support.4

Support Groups and Group Therapy

Veterans with substance use disorder can often find relief and support through group therapy or support groups. These groups provide a safe space for veterans to share their experiences and connect with others who understand what they are going through. Group therapy can also help veterans learn new coping skills and strategies for managing their addiction.4,7

Many different types of support groups and group therapy are available for veterans with substance use problems. Some groups focus on specific substances, while others provide general support for any type of addiction. Some groups focus on specific issues that may be related to addiction, such as trauma or mental health disorders.4,7

Couples and Family Counseling

Couple and family counseling can be an excellent way for veterans with SUD to get the support they need. In this setting, they can learn how to cope with their addiction, deal with any stress or anger that may be contributing to it, and receive support from the people closest to them in their recovery. This can be an extremely beneficial way for veterans to get the help they need and can also help strengthen their relationships with loved ones and family members.4,7

Music Therapy

Veterans with substance use disorder can greatly benefit from music therapy. Music therapy is so beneficial for veterans because it provides an outlet for them to express their emotions. Music therapy can also help veterans relax and de-stress, which can be extremely helpful in managing their addiction.4

Relapse Prevention

Combating relapse is a critical part of any substance use disorder (SUD) treatment program, but it can be especially challenging for veterans. Many factors can contribute to a relapse, such as stress from daily life, negative emotions, social isolation, and lack of support.4,7

The Salute to a Recovery program is specifically designed to help veterans prevent relapse and maintain sobriety. The program provides the support and resources needed to overcome the challenges veterans face following treatment.4,7

Where and How Can I Find a Treatment Center Offering the Salute To Recovery Near Me?

There are a few ways to find a rehab center that offers the Salute to Recovery program. To find treatment centers, you can visit online resource centers like SAMHSA’s treatment locator. The organization provides confidential and anonymous information on substance abuse and mental health treatment facilities in the United States.7

For more information about any of these resources, including finding treatment facilities that offer the Salute to Recovery program, you can phone a 24/7 helpline to find treatment facilities that offer the Salute to Recovery program nearby.You can also reach out to American Addiction Centers (AAC) directly. You can get in touch with their admissions navigators to find treatment centers that offer the Salute to Recovery program, including the Recovery First Treatment Center in Hollywood, FL.4