How to Honor and Celebrate National Recovery Month 2021

September marks National Recovery Month each year. Let’s take this time to celebrate people leading fulfilling lives in recovery, as well as the people that make it possible by treating and supporting them.

We can also use this time to look at opportunities for improvement in the field of treatment and recovery support, as well as in the way we support people battling addiction in our daily lives.

The Theme of Recovery Month 2021

This year, the theme of Recovery Month is “Recovery is for Everyone: Every Person, Every Family, Every Community.”

One of the prevailing myths about addiction is that it only affects certain people or communities. In truth, practically everyone is affected by addiction, either directly or indirectly. That’s why this year, we are encouraged to reflect on how:

  • Recovery and addiction treatment spaces can be made more accessible and inclusive.
  • We can work to end the stigma surrounding addiction and addiction treatment.
  • We can make people battling addiction feel comfortable seeking help.
  • People have different experiences with addiction and recovery and how to be mindful of that fact.

Ending the Stigma Surrounding Addiction

Many of us have good intentions, but subtly perpetuate some of the myths about addiction or contribute to the stigma surrounding addiction and recovery. One way we may do this without realizing is in the language we use.


  • Avoiding terms that imply addiction is a choice or moral failing. For example, words like habit, would be better replaced with “addiction” or “substance use disorder.” These terms more accurately reflect the nature of the disease.
  • Using person-first language. People are more than just the disease they are afflicted with, and it’s better to address them as such. Instead of referring to someone as an “addict,” “user,” or “alcoholic,” consider terms like “person with an addiction,” “person that uses drugs,” or “person with alcohol use disorder.”
  • Replacing stigmatizing words in your vocabulary in regard to drug use. For example, “drug abuse” can be replaced with “drug misuse” or “drug use.” Also, consider referring to someone as “not using drugs” instead of “clean.” It’s more accurate and does not unintentionally put down someone that has yet to get the help they need to fight their addiction.

It may not seem like much, but stigma and fear of judgement is a significant barrier for many people battling addiction that need treatment. Simple changes like these may make them more comfortable being open and seeking the help they need.

Addiction Treatment at Recovery First

Addiction is a chronic disease, and its effects can be devastating. Fortunately, it is treatable and, like other medical conditions, treatment is covered by insurance. You can use the the tool to see if your insurance covers care at Recovery First.

Recovery First Treatment Center offers several residential/inpatient and outpatient treatment options, as well as specialized treatment tracks for veterans, first responders, and healthcare professionals.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, there’s no shame in seeking help. Please reach out to an admissions navigator at to learn more.

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