The Importance of National Recovery Month During a Pandemic

Staying connected to others in community is important for those in recovery

Lemont, Illinois, UNITED STATES

Chicago, Sept. 03, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- During the current COVID-19 pandemic, there has been an increase in substance abuse and significant impact on mental health. Now in its 31st year, September is National Recovery Month and staying connected to others is more important than ever.

According to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA) National Recovery Month is held every September in order to educate Americans that substance use treatment and mental health services can enable those with mental and substance use disorders to live healthy and rewarding lives.

“It’s important to ‘build your army’ and ‘fill your spiritual backpack’ with the necessary supplies in order to maintain recovery,” said Meredith Entler, B.S., M.S., therapist at Timberline Knolls Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP). “The army is made up of the people you met on your journey that are supportive of your recovery, and will come to your aid in the ‘battle’ against the urges to return to substances as a solution. The spiritual backpack gets filled with the tools you found to work for you.”

In any moment of difficulty, such as a global pandemic, it’s important to reach into a “spiritual backpack” and rally the troops. Most recovery meetings are now available on web-based platforms, such as Zoom and others. Many individuals can actually attend meetings anywhere in the world now. Humans are not made to be alone, we thrive in community.

Entler also reminds us that it is ok to turn off the news and connect with what matters most to you. We have the option to walk away from the constant flow of information and reconnect with what we value. Another helpful tip is to put your phone on “Do Not Disturb” for a short period each day and allow yourself the space to connect with yourself and those you love.

Going to treatment for substance abuse is a very personal decision. Entler adds, “If someone feels they cannot manage identifying and doing the next right thing, it is probably time to ask for more help. There should never be any shame in asking for what you need. Many people avoid seeking treatment because mental health struggles are still so stigmatized. I believe that the strongest among us are those who are able to ask for help when they need it. That is what true courage looks like.”

Recovery is available to all those who seek it. Regardless of resources, everyone can tap into what the recovery community has to offer. All are welcome. Just take it one day at a time.

About Timberline Knolls:

Timberline Knolls is a leading residential treatment center for women and adolescent girls, ages 12 and older, with eating disorders, substance abuse, trauma, mood and co-occurring disorders. Located in suburban Chicago, residents receive excellent clinical care from a highly trained professional staff on a picturesque 43-acre wooded campus. An adult partial hospitalization program (PHP), with housing, is also available in nearby Orland Park, Ill., for women to step down or direct admit. For more information on Timberline Knolls call 877.257.9611 or visit We are also on Facebook – Timberline Knolls, LinkedIn – Timberline Knolls and Twitter – @TimberlineToday.


Meredith Entler, B.S., M.S., Therapist, Timberline Knolls

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