BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. --
Alcohol and substance abuse can impact numerous people in many different ways, and whether an individual is aware of it or not, the potential for negative, life-altering consequences is real.
Luckily for Barksdale Airmen, the fight to help themselves recover from this abuse doesn't have to be fought alone.
"Barksdale's Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment program is a medical program offering treatment, intervention and education," said Airman 1st Class Erika Mata, 2nd Operational Medical Readiness Squadron ADAPT technician. "This program is important and valuable in providing education regarding substances and responsible drinking, which is not commonly taught."
One way to ensure personal safety and look out for others is by understanding and watching for warning signs of alcohol abuse.
"You know you have a problem when there is evidence of persistent lack of control with alcohol use or problematic issues because of alcohol use," said Staff Sgt. Tayler Peterson, 2nd OMRS ADAPT NCO in-charge. "When your alcohol intake begins to turn into a way to relieve physical or emotional symptoms, or adversely impacts your life, it could be time to seek consultation."
Individuals who fit this persona and wish to seek help do not need another source advocate for their entrance into the program. Self-referring is a way for Airmen to take the first step in controlling their alcohol or substance abuse.
"It is always easier to continue a bad habit than experience the uncomfortableness of change," Mata said. "Making the step of self-referring shows a lot of insight and courage."
Barksdale's ADAPT program is open to all active duty personnel, National Guard or Reserve members on active orders. Government employees are eligible for a one-time evaluation with treatment recommendations.
To request an appointment with the ADAPT team or to receive further information regarding alcohol or substance abuse, please call (318) 456-6600.
"We are here to help people who may need the assistance and our goal is to give them the materials and education they need to succeed," Peterson said.