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Native American Rehab Centers

Compared to other demographics in the United States, Native Americans and Alaskan natives have some of the highest rates of alcohol in drug use disorders. Recent data shows increased rates of use of marijuana, cocaine, hallucinogenic drugs, and methamphetamines. Although Native Americans and Alaska Natives comprise a relatively small overall percentage of the total United States population, the impact drugs and alcohol have on this demographic is significant. 

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Substance Abuse in the United States

Overview of Native American Addiction Demographics

According to data provided during the 2015 United States Census, there are approximately 6.6 million Americans who identify as Native American or Alaska Native. While this number seems large, it reflects only two percent of the total United States population. Native Americans are significantly more likely to struggle with social and environmental issues that often lead to mental health challenges and substance use disorders. 

For decades, Native Americans American and Alaska Native have been disproportionately subject to struggles many other American citizens do not face. The demographic is more than twice as likely to live in poverty compared to the general population and are more likely to experience interracial violence than any other ethnic group. Also, according to the United States Department of Justice, at least seventy percent of violent crimes experienced by Native Americans are committed by someone who does not identify as part of the same population. Over the last thirty to forty years, Native Americans have been increasingly relocated from reservations and rural areas to urban areas and cities. Today, nearly seventy percent of Native Americans live in urban areas, which is a significant change from their living environment a few short years ago. This results in reduced connection to their tribal communities, cultural history, and in some cases, immediate family. All of these factors contribute to declining mental health and increased substance use and abuse. 

The statistics among Native Americans and Alaska Natives are worrisome. According to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services Indian Health Service Division of Behavioral Health Office of Clinical and Preventive Services, those who identify as Native American or Alaska Native are more likely to report a past-year substance use disorder than any other race. According to the Native American Center for Excellence, as many as nine percent of Native Americans between ages twelve and seventeen have an alcohol use disorder, as do approximately twenty-one percent of those aged eighteen to twenty-five. Across all age groups, illicit drug use is higher among these demographics than any other single ethnic group. Among Native Americans over the age of twelve, nearly fifty percent report marijuana use, seventeen percent report using cocaine or hallucinogenic drugs, almost twelve percent report using methamphetamines, four percent report using crack, and seven percent report misusing prescription drugs. 

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Why Go to a Native American Friendly Rehab?

What are the Benefits of Going to a Native American Rehab?

Many members of Native American and Alaska Native communities have limited access to essential mental health and substance abuse treatment services. Despite nearly twenty percent of the population needed treatment for drug or alcohol use disorders, only about twelve percent will ever seek or successfully receive treatment. There are several factors thought to contribute to these low treatment rates, including transportation issues, lack of health insurance (or poor coverages that does not provide for addiction and mental health treatment services), poverty, cultural stigma, and minimal treatment options in the regions and communities where Native American and Alaska Native populations are centered. Also, each tribe is unique. Each has its own history, substance abuse patterns, and varying degree of trust in modern (or westernized) medicine. To be effective, addiction and mental health treatment approaches must be tailored to address these barriers, and each individual patient’s needs. 

The benefits of attending a Native American rehab include the integration of tribal specific strategies. At a rehab that focuses on the Native American demographic’s needs, one will find treatment models that combine traditional native teachings with well-known evidence-based practices and cognitive-behavioral therapies. Some of the traditional approaches may include:

  • Talking, art, or drum circles
  • Meditations
  • Smudging ceremonies
  • Sweat lodges
  • Vision quests
  • Medicine wheels

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Native American Addiction Recovery Groups

A vast body of research has shown that the most successful treatment programs are based on traditional healing approaches and customs integrated with techniques, including 12-step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous. Using both provides a holistic approach to treatment. Indian Health Service (a federal program for Native Americans and Alaska Natives) recommends using an approach that blends both the traditional medicine wheel with the use of recovery groups (12-step programs) such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous.

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How to Find a Native American Rehab Near You

When seeking addiction treatment as a member of a Native American or Alaska Native community, it is essential to find a treatment center where American Indians and Alaska Natives’ cultural and spiritual beliefs are part of the treatment plan. Other considerations, such as the historical trauma suffered by people who identify with these ethnic groups, must be given special consideration when developing treatment plans for addiction and other mental health conditions. Understanding the needs of this demographic is critical to finding effective rehab services and achieving lasting recovery. At My Recovery Source, we understand it is essential for addiction and mental health treatment to consider the patients’ culture, beliefs, and practices when creating a treatment program to meet their needs. The most successful programs with the best outcomes are those where someone feels comfortable, free to speak and disclose their fears, and feels surrounded by like-minded individuals who share the same concerns, background, and treatment goals. Addiction is unique to the individual. Thus, how treatment impacts their needs and helps them achieve sobriety must be unique as well. If a participant feels as though the program does not respect their unique needs or they feel uncomfortable in their surroundings, they may not finish out the program and therefore reduce their chances of attaining sobriety and long-term recovery. 

If you or a loved one are ready to seek addiction treatment and are interested in a Native American rehab, contact the team at My Recovery Source for guidance. We can help you find the best rehabs near you that provide therapies and amenities that align with your individual needs and goals. Don’t let addiction control another day. Sobriety and recovery are within reach. Let the team at My Recovery Source help you start your journey today. 

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