Many police officers turn to alcohol because they are under a lot of stress and pressure, and will need alcohol inpatient. They see a lot of negative news in this world, and have to deal with stressful situations regularly. Many law enforcement officers also feel the need to drink to fit in with their peers.
Drug abuse among law enforcement is much more prevalent than believed. A study conducted by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) found that:
- 18.1% of male officers and 15.9% of female officers experienced adverse consequences from alcohol use
- 11% of male officers and 16% of female officers reported alcohol use levels that would be considered “at risk” by the NIAAA
Many law enforcement officers believed that those who did not drink were viewed as unfriendly and suspicious people by their peers. They felt obligated to drink with their fellow officers at social events.
Police officers are susceptible to alcohol dependence and tolerance too. Unfortunately, dependence can lead to addiction. Many police officers who end up getting addicted to alcohol don’t seek addiction treatment. Their lack of initiative is usually due to the stigma associated with alcohol addiction. They may feel ashamed or embarrassed about their situation.
Fortunately, there are many anonymous alcohol inpatient programs for police officers. Confidentiality and privacy are essential to these alcohol rehab programs. They protect the identity of each patient, so they can recover in peace. Sobriety is only one step away for those who have dedicated their lives to the criminal justice system.
What Stops Many Police Officers From Getting Substance Abuse Treatment?
Unlike many other professionals, many police officers feel that they have to go through a number of obstacles to get help. Some of the most common addiction treatment barriers for police officers include:
- An unspoken ideal for being able to cope with negative situations
- An inability to pay for treatment
- Fear of social isolation or rejection from peers, family and friends
- Fear of consequences in their careers
- Feeling out of place at addiction treatment centers
- The stigma surrounding alcohol addiction and treatment
Police officers often believe that they can’t be a victim of alcohol addiction. However, it’s important to remember that this is a disease that does not discriminate. It can affect anyone.
Law enforcement officers should not feel ashamed for getting help. Instead, they should feel proud that they are taking a step in the right direction, and acting like a model citizen. Remember, you don’t have to hit rock bottom to get help.
How Does An Alcohol Inpatient Rehab Program Work?
Alcohol inpatient recovery programs usually take anywhere from 28 days to 90 days. The longer the program, the higher the chance of recovery. It takes a while for the brain to reset itself from addiction.
Alcohol rehab involves both medically monitored detox and behavioral therapy. Patients receive evidence based alcohol treatment methods to help ease cravings and manage withdrawal symptoms. Each rehab facility will offer different perks. Some may offer horseback riding services, while others may have spas at the facility. Patients will live in the facility until they have not only been weaned off of alcohol, but also no longer crave it.
Those who successfully complete an inpatient treatment program will usually transition into a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP). PHP lasts for several months. Patients who need continuous rehab may then switch to intensive outpatient programs or a continuing care programs. It’s not unusual for many patients to choose to stay at sober living facilities while at the outpatient level. These programs offer continuing education on alcohol addiction.
When living at an inpatient facility, patients are cut off from the world. There are many benefits to this. For one, they are no longer exposed to triggers. Two, the change of environment helps the brain reset. And, three, the serene setting at the treatment facilities help patients stay calm and stress-free.
Types Of Therapies Recommended For Inpatient Programs
A huge part of alcohol abuse treatment is therapy and counseling. These types of services work on building healthy habits. They also improve one’s mental health. Many treatment facilities offer empirical programs, so daily groups sessions can be expected. Some of the most common therapies include:
- 12 Step Recovery programs
- Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) sessions
- Family counseling sessions
- Group therapy sessions
- Individual counseling sessions
- Psychiatric Sessions
- Skill building activities
EMDR sessions are highly recommended for law enforcement officers. This is because this therapy helps treat trauma and PTSD. Many police officers bring their work home with them. They struggle with negative thoughts and emotions from what they see at work. EMDR can help treat depression, trauma and PTSD. This type of therapy is also highly recommended for veterans.
Many police officers will need specialized alcohol and drug abuse treatment. They need to deal with mental health problems, like PTSD, anger management and guilt resolution. They also need to learn how to cope with violence. Alcohol abuse and mental health disorders are closely linked.
Types Of Medications Recommended For Alcohol Detox
Alcohol detox involves using medications to rid the body of alcohol. Most detox programs only take seven days. After seven days, most physical withdrawal symptoms will begin to subside and disappear. This period also coincides with the length of time it takes for the body to metabolize the remaining alcohol in the body.
Different types of medications are used to treat alcohol dependence. Some of the most common medications used in alcohol inpatient for police officers include:
Each medication works in its own unique way. Some medications block alcohol receptors in the brain, while others are used in diversion therapy. For example, disulfiram will cause undesirable physiological reactions in the body when alcohol is consumed. If an alcoholic takes disulfiram and then drinks alcohol, he or she will feel incredibly sick and ill.
The type of medications that are recommended will depend on the patient’s physical condition. It will also depend on the length of the alcohol use, among many other factors. Different detox centers will have different options available.
Steps a Law Enforcement Officer Should Take to Get Help
If you’re a police officer in need of alcohol inpatient treatment, there are several steps you should take. They include:
Don’t rush your recovery. Take time to fully recover, so that you’re in a better physical and mental state. Alcohol rehab centers usually offer different treatment options. Take the time to learn about the pros and cons of each one. Then, make a decision based on what fits in best with your lifestyle and needs.
What Other Professionals Are at Risk for Alcohol Addiction?
Some professions are more likely to lead to alcoholism than others. The higher risk for alcohol abuse and addiction may be due to higher stress on the job. It could also be because of easier accessibility to alcoholic beverages. There are many possible reasons.
Surprisingly, among the top positions which are more likely to become alcoholics, police officers don’t make the cut. The top 10 professionals who are most at risk for alcohol dependence include:
- Bartenders, who are 2.33 times more likely than other professionals to die from alcohol use disorder
- Shoe machine operators, who are 2.00 times more likely to die from alcoholism than other professionals
- Roofers, who are 1.87 times more likely to die from alcoholism than average
- Painters, who are 1.85 times more likely to die from alcohol use disorder than average
- Chefs, who are 1.77 times more likely to die from alcoholism than average
- Sailors, who are 1.75 times more likely to die from alcoholism than average
- Construction laborers, who are 1.72 times more likely to die from alcoholism than average
- Drywall installers, who are 1.71 times more likely to die from alcoholism than average
- Musicians, who are 1.65 times more likely to die from alcoholism than average
- Concrete finishers, who are 1.65 times more likely to die from alcoholism than others
Although police officers don’t make the top of the list, a huge percentage of law enforcement officers do struggle with alcoholism. Most of these individuals have difficulties getting help due to the stigma surrounding addiction.