The Prevalence of Substance Abuse and Addiction in Sports: What Do We Do About It?

*This presentation is no longer eligible for the 1 CE credit*

This workshop will discuss the prevalence of the use of substances among all levels of athletes and the risk factors associated with using. We will discuss various ways to identify ‘red flags’ of abusing substances, as well as evidenced based interventions that can be helpful in combating the misuse of drugs and alcohol among athletes. We will show how addressing substance abuse problems in conjunction with the underlying issues that may be contributing to their use (i.e., mental health, pressure, identity, etc.) is imperative to their overall health and well-being, and it is an important component of having an integrated health approach.
Attendees will leave the presentation with the understanding of the unique needs of athletes and the risks that emerge as a result of being immersed in sports culture and how that intersects with substance abuse. They will receive information on practical prevention strategies to implement with athletes and sports programs. Finally, they will obtain practical, evidenced based treatment interventions to use with athletes to increase success rates both on and off the field.

Jessica Joiner, LCSW, LAC
Jessica has over a decade of experience working with those afflicted with addiction, complex trauma, and co-occurring disorders. She is using her experience along with the extensive skills gained to address the many issues that arise for athletes. She works with all levels of athletic performers (high school, college, enthusiast, semi-pro, pro, retired, etc.), and their families to address issues such as substance abuse/addiction, adjusting from one level of play to the next, identity, pressure, injury, and overall mental health and wellness. She is a member of the Alliance of Social Workers in Sports and recently presented at their National Conference in October 2019.

After years of agency work, Jessica recently opened her own private practice in Parker, CO. Her therapeutic approach is individualized and holistic, while considering a systems/social justice perspective. She values the importance of human connection and relationship with others and sees it as a powerful vehicle for change. She considers it an honor to help others on their journey to achieving their best life through recovery, healing, and empowerment. Jessica is passionate about social justice issues and advocates for human rights and equality. As part of that passion she enjoys presenting material on various topics related to equity issues, as well as those related to substance abuse/addiction—both in general, and in the world of sports.

Journey Inspired Counseling