By Breanna Walton, Army Flier StaffApril 14, 2011
FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Drinking to drown sorrows, soothe the transition back home after deployment and "binge drinking" over the weekend is a common form of alcohol abuse among Soldiers throughout the U.S.
Alcohol abuse doesn't just affect the military, it also affects the surrounding communities.
Fort Rucker Army Substance Abuse Program officials say the number of people they saw during 2010 prove that alcohol abuse and driving under the influence are issues at the post.
"This information is the driving need for an alcohol awareness campaign at Fort Rucker," said Jesse Hunt, Fort Rucker Army Substance Abuse Program prevention coordinator. "We have a campaign going on through April, but I have extended it to an Alcohol Abuse Awareness Quarter for all of the Soldiers to have time to study the prevention of such abuse.
"The reason behind the campaign is to be aware that alcohol is the issue, and part of the education is to tell people how much you can safely drink and how much you shouldn't drink," he continued.
Fort Rucker offers four programs for alcohol abuse or incidents: education, outpatient, intensive outpatient and inpatient program.
"We are running a 75 percent success rate," said Hunt. "About 75 percent of our clients walk out the door and we don't see them for treatment again."
There are multiple Web sites available for those interested in educating themselves about alcohol prevention, including: identifying the five types of alcoholics, drinking smarter, alcoholism-risk factor for suicide, alcoholism and alcohol abuse, the stages of recovery from alcoholism, and the programs Al-Anon and Alateen. Those interested in the information can visit www.acsap.army.mil.
"Command can make all the difference, especially if a Soldier is saying, 'I have a problem and I want to take care of this now before it affects my work.' When the command supports the Soldier, it is protecting its investment in the Soldier," said Deborah Scott, Fort Rucker Army Substance Abuse Program supervisory counselor.
"The command at Fort Rucker bends over backwards to help Soldiers who help themselves," Hunt said.
For more information on alcohol abuse, call 255-7509 or visit the Fort Rucker Army Substance Abuse Program office in Lyster Army Health Clinic, first floor, Rm. T-100.