OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Every year millions of people experience substance use disorder and every year millions seek out treatment.
Substance addiction recovery is recognized every September, during National Recovery Month. The month is used to educate the public about treatment and how it can lead to a better life. This year, the theme is celebration, honoring all the victories people in treatment and those supporting them have made.
Counselors at the Omaha Treatment Center say while they celebrate recovery every single day, the month-long observance is important to break the stigma around addiction.
“Just having a month, I mean, we’re here dealing with it every day, every month but at least having one month where they could bring it out to the public a little more so that way, it shows how we can help people to get into recovery and help them into a better life,” said Gary Anderson, a counselor at Omaha Treatment Center.
LeAnn Stevenson, a counselor at Omaha Treatment Center, said the hardest part for patients if often the first step.
"The best part of the methadone treatment is intake. When somebody walks in, it’s the hardest step. They’re down, they’re broken, they’re out, this is the last place they want to come, but they come. They do the process and in a couple weeks they’re normal again whatever that normal is. It’s like the light turns on," Stevenson said.
People often return to the center years after finishing the program to show how much their life has changed.
"I have seen people come in that are homeless that end up gaining an apartment, a job, a car," Sheila Kennedy, program director, said. "Those exciting things that they could not say that they could have before they have now."