When a man or woman is struggling with the debilitating symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder, also known as PTSD, the aftereffects that can occur in a person’s life can be far-reaching and wreak havoc on that individual’s mental and physical health. The hyperarousal, re-experiencing, and avoidance symptoms can make completing the most mundane of tasks seemingly impossible to a sufferer of this condition. In many cases, those battling PTSD grapple with a great deal of distress and often turn to drugs and/or alcohol as a means of coping with their inner turmoil. Furthermore, should these symptoms of PTSD remain present in an individual’s life without alleviation, the anguish experienced by these men and women can worsen and trigger the onset of additional mental health concerns. At Sierra Tucson, we understand the devastation caused by the presence of posttraumatic stress disorder in a person’s life and are proud to offer exemplary programming that is geared towards holistically healing those afflicted with this condition. As a leading treatment provider, we put forth every effort to improve the lives of every man and woman who comes to Sierra Tucson for care.
Helping a Loved One or Family Member Get Treatment
Witnessing a close friend or loved one struggle with posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms can oftentimes be heart-breaking. Since the person you care about experienced, witnessed, or learned about a trauma, you may have noticed a number of changes in his or her demeanor or how he or she emotionally responds to certain things. You may be concerned for your loved one when thinking about his or her future and how his or her mental state is impacting his or her life. As a concerned friend, spouse, or other close relative, there are a number of things that you can do to help this important person in your life get the life-saving treatment that is needed:
- Educate yourself on posttraumatic stress disorder, including its symptoms, causes, and prognosis when treatment is sought. By learning all that you can about this condition, you will be able to grasp what your loved one is going through, be keen to identifying symptoms that you may not have been aware of, and realize the benefits of treatment.
- Discuss the need for treatment with your loved one, emphasizing the benefits of seeking treatment.
- When having a conversation about treatment, it is important that you convey your concerns in an empathic manner and inform him or her that you will be supportive during the therapeutic process.
- Research treatment options that can meet your loved one’s needs and include him or her in this process. By including the person you care about in the treatment-seeking process, he or she will be more invested in his or her own care and may feel empowered in choosing a treatment provider that is appealing to him or her.
- Encourage your loved one to contact the treatment provider of choice or, if your loved one prefers, reach out to the selected provider and inquire about the admissions process, methods for care, and other relevant information about that particular provider.
- Agree to go with your loved one for a tour of the treatment provider or to his or her initial assessment. Both of these are great ways to show your support.
- Make every effort to be part of your loved one’s care once he or she is engaged in a treatment program.
Lastly, if your loved one authorizes consent, it is a good idea to maintain contact with your loved one’s treatment provider for the duration of the therapeutic process. Regular contact, or at least some contact, with said provider can supply you with updates on your loved one’s progress and offer you suggestions for how you can help your loved one during and after treatment is complete.
Why Consider Treatment at Sierra Tucson
The incapacitating symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder can cause a great deal of strife in the lives of sufferers. Failing to get treatment for this condition can render a number of harmful consequences for an individual over time. And, because the symptoms of this mental illness may not become apparent until long after the initial trauma occurred, it is important to seek treatment as soon an individual begins experiencing symptoms. Those with this disorder may experience a decline in functioning in occupational settings, display emotional outbursts without an obvious trigger, restructure their lifestyle to avoid certain people, places, or things that are reminiscent of the trauma, or experience disrupted sleep patterns due to intrusive nightmares. Prolonged suffering can make a person more vulnerable to use and/or abuse of substances, as drugs and alcohol may offer a temporary reprieve from an individual’s turmoil. Furthermore, a person with PTSD may begin to develop other mental health concerns or physical ailments should the symptoms of this illness remain present for a long time. Seeking and receiving treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder is one of the best things that can be done to prevent the occurrence of the aforementioned effects. Mental health treatment that treats PTSD symptoms and other concerns present in an individual’s life can ultimately help these people come to understand a life without the dismay and torment of this serious mental illness.
Types of Treatment Offered at Sierra Tucson
As an internationally known and respected treatment provider of medical, therapeutic, and experiential services, Sierra Tucson is pleased to offer state of the art treatment for a wide range of behavioral health concerns. Through the integration of evidence-based practices and integrative therapies, Sierra Tucson prides itself on being a leading provider of services that are effective in treating addictions and other behavioral health problems. Holistic and individualized treatment is cornerstone to the care offered at Sierra Tucson, and is provided by a staff of qualified and experienced. Sierra Tucson’s primary goal is to deliver services in such a manner that all who come to us for treatment will benefit from our services and resume the pursuit of a healthy and productive future.
Sierra Tucson includes Desert Flower Hospital, a 15-bed psychiatric hospital, and a 124-bed behavioral health residential treatment center, both of which are situated on the same campus. Patients who require immediate stabilization due to the presence of psychiatric concerns, such as those associated with posttraumatic stress disorder, or those in need of medical detoxification services can receive these services at Desert Flower prior to engaging in Sierra Tucson’s residential care.
The behavioral health residential treatment supplied by Sierra Tucson is designed to elicit the most favorable treatment outcomes for all patients. With five distinct programs offered within the residential treatment center available, patients can expect to receive the beneficial services they need in order to live a truly healed life. With specific regards to those wishing to rebuild their lives after enduring a trauma, Sierra Tucson’s Trauma Recovery Program is specially designed to care for the symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder, trauma related to sexual abuse or non-sexual trauma, and the additional concerns that are known to afflict these individuals. This program is intensive in nature and implements a biopsychosocial and spiritual approach to care.
Once an assessment determines that a patient is appropriate for this program, he or she will then begin his or her journey towards discovering personal and emotional truths concerning fear, honesty, trust, and dependency. Additionally, patients can partake in the following treatment methods, of which are outlined in a patient’s treatment plan and Sierra Tucson’s daily treatment schedules:
Medication management: Patients engaged in the Trauma Recovery Program are able to meet with a psychiatrist at least two times per week to determine the need for medication, monitor medication, and adjust any medication prescribed in order to ensure optimal alleviation of mental health symptoms, including those associated with posttraumatic stress disorder. Registered nurses and clinical technicians also assist in monitoring a patient’s medication needs. Every patient may not require these services, yet they are available should these services meet the needs of a given patient.
Individual therapy: Master’s level clinicians and licensed psychologists conduct individual therapy sessions with patients several times per week depending on the treatment modality that is being administered. Individual therapy sessions are a time in which patients can process their progress, concerns, and feelings one-on-one with a qualified mental health professional.
Group therapy: Upon admission to the Trauma Recovery Program, patients are assigned a small group of peers with whom they will meet four times per week with a primary therapist. In addition to the peer group, other groups are supplied by this program. Topics covered within these groups include, but are not limited to:
- Processing grief and loss
- Relapse prevention
- Healing anxiety
- Anger management
- Didactic lectures
- Resilience training
Four Day Family Program: Recognizing the important role of loved ones in the lives of patients, Sierra Tucson includes the Four Day Family program for family members and other close identified loved ones of patients. This program typically occurs during a patient’s third week of treatment and allows loved ones to engage in the therapeutic process to practice healthy communication and boundaries with understanding and support. Family members and loved ones can attend psychoeducational lectures, process groups, and a family dinner that can unify a family unit in a powerful way. Lastly, loved ones can remain in contact with a patient’s primary therapist should questions or concerns arise during the course of treatment.
Therapeutic Recreational Activities Program: In order to help patients build a stronger sense of self and confidence, Sierra Tucson offers a Therapeutic Recreational Activities Program. This program includes the following therapeutic activities, of which are conducted daily or on a weekly basis to stress the importance of getting physical activity:
- Equine therapy
- Adventure therapy, of which includes a ropes course and rock wall
- Movement therapy
- Daily walk after dinner or before evening programming
- Personal training
Additional services: In order to fully care for the needs of those working through trauma, Sierra Tucson’s Trauma Recovery Program includes a number of additional services that have proven effectiveness in helping people overcome a painful traumatic past and any distressing symptoms that could be present. The following services are those offered within this innovative program:
- Somatic experiencing (SE), which aims to alleviate the symptoms of PTSD and other trauma-related concerns by helping patients focus on their own body sensations.
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) uses a patient’s own eye movements to explore the emotionally charged memories of one’s traumatic past.
- Somato-emotional response massage (SER massage) is a procedure that uses crain-sacral therapy to free the body of the discomforting effects of trauma.
Should a patient require stabilization services while engaged in Sierra Tucson’s residential programming, he or she is able to partake in the services supplied by Desert Flower Hospital before returning to residential treatment. The staff of professionals conducts an ongoing assessment of each patient’s progress and needs and offers assistance in making this transition smooth so as to continue the process of healing with as little disruption as possible.
Continuing Care and Levels of Treatment
Sierra Tucson’s method for providing all-encompassing care for every patient who comes for treatment includes thorough discharge planning and continuing care services that are second-to-none. Once a patient engages in services at Sierra Tucson, a comprehensive continued care plan is devised so that patients can remain successful once treatment is complete. Those partaking in the services at Desert Flower Hospital meet with continued care staff to assess each individual’s needs and plan for discharge. Those engaged in the residential programming at Sierra Tucson meet with the same continued care staff and regional outreach specialists and partake in lectures and one-on-one planning sessions to ensure quality referrals and to establish any follow-up appointments that may be required once a patient is discharged.
Furthermore, patients exiting the residential programming, along with their family members, can benefit from The Connections Program. This program includes 12-month-long case management services that are in place to offer ongoing and substantial support to former patients. A representative from this program contacts patients 48 hours after they are discharged and is available to assist these individuals in seeking and getting the additional services they need in order to remain successful in the process of healing and recovery.
Lastly, former patients can take part in the Alumni Services affiliated with Sierra Tucson. These services include groups offered through outpatient centers, of which are located across the United States.
If you or a loved one wishes to receive the superior care that has improved the lives of many individuals who have endured trauma, look no further than Sierra Tucson. The life you have envisioned can begin here.