HSCO 509 Final Paper Native Americans and Substance Abuse.docx

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SUBSTANCE ABUSE 1 Native Americans and Substance Abuse Liberty University
SUBSTANCE ABUSE 2 Abstract Substance abuse within the Native American community continues to rise with changes to everyday life. Drugs and alcohol are being used to augment or take away from reality and they can and will contribute to mental health issues and physical problems as they progress through life. Substance abuse in any form should not be dismissed as the effects of this disorder affect not only the individual, but those that are around them to include, family and friends. There are many different places and people that are equipped to help guide those that suffer from substance abuse to a better life. To understand why someone is taking drugs and consuming alcohol, the counselors are going to have to understand the issues that took the person to this as a comfort. Intervention at different levels of family and friends may need to be included in counseling. With proper treatment of the underlying issues, and barring a relapse, the client should be expected to make a good recovery. Keywords : Native American, Substance Abuse
SUBSTANCE ABUSE 3 Native Americans and Substance Abuse Native Americans have been a part of the history of American society for a long time. Native Americans can be broken down into two different names, American Indians and Alaskan Natives. For the intents of this research paper, they will be called Native Americans unless specifically needing to be broken down into statistical categories. Throughout history, they have faced adversity, whether it be someone forcing them to move as they take their lands or by the way they are treated during incidents like the Navajo Long walk or the Cherokee “Trail of Tears” (Roessel, n.d. para. 4). This and other issues have been ongoing and have culminated in substance abuse issues by many Native Americans. This research paper is going to cover the background of Native Americans to include, the major tribes, roughly the numbers of men and woman as well as what their totals are against the population. Let us discuss what some of the substance abuse and mental health issues that they suffer from. Counseling approaches will be covered to include some that have worked as well as those that have not. Counselors would be remiss if they did not cover the creative approaches that may be needed to ensure that respect is given to the culture of Native Americans as well. Finally, this paper will cover some of the religious aspects of modernized religion as well as the religion and spirituality of Native American beliefs. Cultural Awareness As of 1 July 2019, there was roughly a total of 4,267,114 American Indians and Alaskan Natives with their total contribution to the Unites states population equaling 1.3 percent (Census Bureau Quickfacts, 2019). To see some of the statistics that are being reported, the following is the breakdown of numbers for the largest Native American tribes according to the 2019 census survey as there were no newer ones on their site. The first and largest Native American tribe is

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