The Central Rockies ATTC is managed by the Utah Addiction Center at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center. Through a collaborative partnership with the University of Nevada, Reno, and the University of Iowa, the Central Rockies ATTC facilitates workforce development for treatment professionals providing training and technical assistance on evidence-based practices, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Blending Products and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Initiatives.


University of Utah's School of Dentistry trains dental students to identify early signs of substance abuse in patients.




June is Men's Health Month

Trauma-Informed Care 

Associations of Trauma With Substance Use

According to the Diagnostic Statistical Manual, 5th edition (DSM-5), trauma is when an individual experiences an event or repeated events of “actual or threatened death, serious injury, or sexual violence.”1 Many of the individuals who use substances report traumatic experiences.2 Up to 90% of individuals receiving substance use treatment report experiencing a traumatic event in their lifetime.3 Among men with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), the National Comorbidity Study found 52% had a lifetime alcohol use disorder and 34.5% had substance use disorder.4 

What is trauma-informed care?

SAMHSA defines trauma-informed care as involving: (1) realizing the prevalence of trauma; (2) recognizing how trauma affects all individuals involved with the program, organization, or system, including its own workforce; and (3) responding by putting this knowledge into practice.”2 Additionally, a trauma-informed framework utilizes a strengths-focused approach to empower clients and emphasizes cultural competency in service providers.2 In a 2012 SAMHSA survey, over 10,000 programs stated that trauma-informed services were provided.

How does trauma-informed care benefit substance use treatment?

Considering the bidirectional relationship between trauma and substance use, trauma-informed care can provide a safe and collaborative means for addressing substance use and the preceding trauma.2 Trauma-informed services increases client engagement while reducing substance usage and trauma symptoms.5

Additional Information on Trauma-Informed Care In Behavioral Health Sciences

1American Psychiatric Association (2013a). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders. (5th ed.) Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Association.
2Substance Abuse andMental Health Services Administration. (2014). Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Services. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series 57. HHS Publication No. (SMA) 13-4801. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
3Wu, N. S., Schairer, L. C., Dellor, E., & Grella, C. (2010). Childhood trauma and health outcomes in adults with comorbid substance abuse and mental health disorders. Addictive Behaviors, 35(1), 68-71. doi:10.1016/j.addbeh.2009.09.003
4Kessler, R. C., Sonnega, A., Bromet, E., Hughes, M., & Nelson, C. B. (1995). Posttraumatic stress disorder in the National Comorbidity survey. Archives of General Psychiatry, 52(12), 1048-1060. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1995.03950240066012
5Cosden, M., Larsen, J. L., Donahue, M. T., & Nylund-Gibson, K. (2015). Trauma symptoms for men and women in substance abuse treatment: A latent transition analysis. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, (50)18-25. doi:10.1016/j.jsat.2014.09.004


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