September is National Recovery Month, designed to educate Americans that substance use treatment and mental health services can enable those with substance use and mental disorders to live healthy and rewarding lives. This is the 31st year celebrating the gains made by those in recovery, and celebrating improvements made by those who are managing other health conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, asthma, and heart disease.
Recovery Month promotes and supports new evidence-based treatment and recovery practices, the dedication of service providers and community members across the nation who make recovery in all its forms possible, and the emergence of a strong and proud recovery community.
The COVID-19 pandemic has posed significant challenges to those in recovery, caused in part by difficulty receiving in-person treatment, the inability to meet in-person for peer support groups, and social isolation. COVID-19 has caused many other overwhelming emotions including fear, uncertainty, and stress to those who face the day-to-day reality of overcoming addiction, and made it more difficult for people to access care. Even though there are challenges to developing and fostering meaningful connections, have by creating new means of connecting, Americans in recovery resolve to fill the void of in person interactions and demonstrated resilience. This resilience comes from establishing virtual peer support groups that embrace technology like videoconferencing to holding health and wellness classes remotely or in person following social distancing guidelines. During this time, we must support our loved ones, neighbors and friends who are struggling with substance use disorder and celebrate those living in recovery.