Many people really look forward to September and the oncoming fall season. College and high school football is underway. Pumpkin spice products are starting to pop up all over. The weather is cooling, the leaves are starting to acquire their vibrant colors, and the world is nestled between the flurry of summertime fun and the intensity of the year-end holiday season.
That’s a lot to enjoy and celebrate—but those are not the only things worthy of celebration in September.
From our perspective, here’s the key celebration of September: National Recovery Month.
What is National Recovery Month?
Have you ever noticed that recovery from a variety of health conditions comes with a celebration of some kind? The most notable example might be the bell ringing that is associated with cancer survivors. (As a side note, we love this commitment to a more inclusive approach to bell ringing at the Abramson Cancer Center at Penn Medicine.)
As rule, however, there are not a lot of celebrations around recovery from a substance use disorder—no doubt due to lingering stigmas associated with drug and alcohol use.
National Recovery Month aims to change that. As it says on the project’s website:
Recovery Month celebrates the gains made by those in recovery, just as we celebrate health improvements made by those who are managing other health conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, asthma, and heart disease. This observance reinforces the positive message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, prevention works, treatment is effective, and people can and do recover.
There are millions of Americans whose lives have been transformed through recovery. Since these successes often go unnoticed by the broader population, Recovery Month provides a vehicle for everyone to celebrate these accomplishments. Each September, tens of thousands of prevention, treatment, and recovery programs and facilities around the country celebrate Recovery Month. They speak about strides made by those in recovery and share their success stories with their neighbors, friends, and colleagues. In doing so, everyone helps to increase awareness and foster a greater understanding about mental and substance use disorders.
A Reminder You Are Not Alone
We want to reemphasize a key sentence from the National Recovery Month website: There are millions of Americans whose lives have been transformed through recovery.
This is such an important fact to keep in mind if you are a person who is struggling with a substance use disorder. Addiction can be so very isolating, and it can feel as though there is no hope of making a lasting change. But Recovery Month reframes that feeling of isolation by reminding us all that many, many—indeed, millions of!—people are on a recovery journey, working each day to maintain their hard-won sobriety.
You can be a part of that amazing community. And speaking of community…
An Inclusive Slogan Highlights Our Interconnectedness
For a long time, National Recovery Month has been rolled out with a new slogan each year. But in 2023, a single tagline has been elevated to the ongoing slogan:
Every Person. Every Family. Every Community.
It is a reminder that recovery is good for everyone. It is good, of course, for the person who has been in the grips of drugs or alcohol. It is good for their friends and family, as a person’s regained sobriety allows them to rebuild relationships and participate fully in the lives of others. And it is good for entire communities, as a commitment to supporting services for those who are struggling yields a healthier, happier society.
The project’s website talks about the meaning underpinning the slogan this way:
The 2023 Recovery Month observance will work to promote and support new evidence-based treatment and recovery practices, the emergence of a strong and proud recovery community, and the dedication of service providers and community members across the nation who make recovery in all its forms possible.
Now is the Perfect Time to Step Toward Sobriety
One of the fundamental principles of National Recovery Month is that we all face challenges—some big and some small. Still, the Recovery Month site reminds us that “with strength, support, and hope from the people we love, we are resilient.”
Maybe you are not feeling too resilient right now because you do not see a path back to sobriety. National Recovery Month is all about illuminating that path—and it starts with getting evidence-based, personalized treatment for a substance use disorder.
At French Creek Recovery Center in Meadville, PA, we treat each person we serve with empathy and respect as we provide care grounded in our expertise and experience. We will see you through medically supervised detoxification, a rehabilitation program that also tackles co-occurring mental health disorders, and a continuum of care designed to provide ongoing support as you leave treatment and join millions of others on the recovery journey.
Ready to get started? September is the perfect time to make a commitment to recovery.