Addiction is a treatable medical condition. Unfortunately, many people still talk about addiction in ways that imply individuals are helpless victims or that their condition is permanent. It is also often common to use words that portray someone with a substance use disorder in a shameful or negative way. Stigmatizing words prevent individuals from seeking treatment. Instead, by using language that conveys hope and optimism for people’s ability to recover and live fulfilling lives –  or what is called recovery-oriented language – we can reduce stigma, promote hope, and encourage individuals to seek treatment.  The resources for today were selected to help all of us learn more about stigmatizing language towards people with substance use disorders and how each of us can help create a more supportive community.

Record Your Activities for the Day

The challenge is designed to spur change – in mindsets, behaviors, opportunities and practices. Please help us keep track of how individuals are engaging with the 21-Day Stigma Challenge resources and actions. Each action you take, each resource you review, will add a ticket in your name to the drawing for one of five $100 gift cards at the end of the challenge.

Do You Want To Learn More? Check Out These Additional Resources:

Words Matter: Words to Use and Avoid when Talking about Substance Use Disorders

These webpages developed by the National Institute on Drug Abuse describe what words to avoid and use when talking about addiction. They provides an explanation for why these word shifts are needed. Here is the resource for health care providers. Here is the resource for residents.

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