Find Drug Rehab for Firefighters in NJ
Firefighters face demanding long hours of work, sleep deprivation and daring stunts with fire. These situations would surely put anyone under considerable stress and immense pressure. Not only that, they face the extremes of danger, which may leave them badly scarred physically and emotionally over time. Thus, many resort to alcohol and other drugs to cope with these issues. Depending on the severity of these stressors, regular abuse of drugs may develop into an addiction. This interferes with job performance and may put other people at mortal danger. If you want to find drug rehab for firefighters in NJ that is private, discreet, and offers the benefits of FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act), then you’ve come to the right place.
Why Firefighters Abuse Drugs
- Work Experience: Knowing that each day exposes you to a traumatic and potentially fatal situation tends to take a toll on the human psyche. Firefighters are humans too. When not at work, they face pretty much the same stress everyone faces daily. Although they receive special training, constant exposure to destruction, injuries, violence, and death raises anxiety and stress levels significantly and puts them at the risk of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). About 8 in every 10 firefighter battle some form of sleep deprivation, poor mental health, and depression and may turn to alcohol, benzodiazepines or even opioids for quick relief.
- Occupational Hazards: Workplace injuries are inevitable for most firefighters. Muscle injuries (including sprains and strains) are common because of the extreme physical nature of their work. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reported 62,085 firefighter injuries in 2016. To help manage pain during recovery from their injuries, physicians often prescribe opioid painkillers. While these substances can help relieve pain in the short-term, they can also lead to addiction if used in excess or over an extended time.
- Occupational Culture: Alcohol is a social lubricant in almost every gathering of people, and firefighters are no different. Besides, a traditionally macho and male-dominated environment goes hand-in-hand with booze. Off-duty drinking is a way to bond with co-workers after long hours at work and may develop into an addiction.
Signs and Symptoms of Drug Abuse in Firefighters
These people are always required to be at an optimal level of performance to ensure their safety and the safety of people they are rescuing. While these are not the classic hallmarks of drug abuse in firefighters, watch out for the following symptoms in persons with such responsibilities:
- Slurred speech, stuttering or incoherency
- Trouble maintaining eye contact
- Dilated or constricted pupils that do not change when exposed to light
- Tremors, shaking or twitching of hands and eyelids
- Alternating cycles of hyperactivity and lethargy
- Impaired coordination
- Extreme mood swings
- Bouts of anxiety and panic attacks
- High levels of irritability
- Difficulty concentrating, focusing on assigned tasks
- Disorientation and attention deficit.
- Poor or marked reduced decision-making abilities.
- Frequent lapses in memory or complete blackout of events
- Needing direction constantly
- Poor personal hygiene.
Find Drug Rehab for Firefighters in New Jersey
Treating drug addiction is different in firefighters from regular people. Early recognition of signs and symptoms of abuse is important because of the risks associated with the job. Admitting there is a problem (the first step toward long-term recovery) can be difficult for firefighters, especially because they have an image of invincibility to uphold.
Rehab often starts with supervised medical detox, which is necessary because withdrawal can be very discomforting. A rehab therapist may recommend medications that can ease the discomfort and cravings that accompany detox. After detox, individual and group therapy sessions are integrated into rehabilitation.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) works best for firefighters. Here, a firefighter in recovery works with the therapist to identify the harmful thoughts, behaviors, stressors, and triggers for their drug problem. Rehab is conducted in an in-patient (residential) or outpatient (non-residential) setting depending on the needs and severity of the problem. Are you or a loved one in the firefighting profession struggling with addiction? NJ Addiction Resources is committed to connecting you with the best rehab centers in New Jersey or out-of-state. Your journey to sobriety begins with a call. We will like to hear from you.