Brookhaven Retreat Observes World Hepatitis Day

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Brookhaven Retreat, a unique residential treatment facility exclusively for women with mental health and/or substance abuse issues, recognizes the impact viral hepatitis has on mental and emotional health.

World Hepatitis Day is observed internationally on July 28. Sponsored by the World Health Organization, this day focuses on bringing awareness to the effects, treatment and prevention of hepatitis.

Hepatitis is a viral disease that has long-term effects on the liver. There are five forms of this virus referred to as A, B, C, D, and E, with hepatitis B and C being the most serious as these forms may potentially lead to life-long illness. Brookhaven Retreat participates in this campaign by recognizing more than the physical impact of a hepatitis diagnosis, but the emotional and mental health effects as well.

After a woman is diagnosed with a chronic medical condition such as hepatitis B, C or D, she may struggle with feelings of depression, anxiety, stress and fear. Studies show that roughly 25 percent of individuals with hepatitis C have been diagnosed with depression and experience a higher risk of suicidal thoughts.

Hepatitis is a critical concern for women with a history of substance abuse. Both hepatitis B and C can be transmitted from intravenous drug use, with nearly 80 percent of people infected with hepatitis C contracting the virus this way. Addressing alcohol addiction is an important part of living a healthy life, especially with hepatitis, as alcohol can drastically expedite this liver disease.

In cohesion with World Hepatitis Day on July 28, Brookhaven Retreat focuses on raising awareness of the impact a chronic disease diagnosis has on a woman’s mental and emotional health.

Brookhaven Retreat teaches women how to successfully cope with the overwhelming feelings and emotions that result from the jarring affects of a chronic disease diagnosis. As a dual-diagnosis facility it also addresses a woman’s drug and alcohol abuse, which is a critical part of hepatitis prevention and treatment.

Although a hepatitis diagnosis is a pivotal moment in a woman’s life that influences her physical health as well as her emotional and mental health, she can still live a fulfilling life. Brookhaven Retreat equips women with the essential skills and tools that allow them to take control of their medical condition and establish a life of health and wellness.

About Brookhaven Retreat
Brookhaven Retreat is a women's treatment center nestled on a naturally beautiful 48-acre site secluded in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. It has helped hundreds of women across the United States overcome depression, trauma, anxiety, substance use and a range of other behavioral health challenges. Brookhaven’s Founder, Jacqueline Dawes, has predicated its gender-specific treatment on “healing emotional breakage” for women. In this way, she has established a sanctuary and a place where women can feel safe, secure and cared for by a staff of highly trained professionals.

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Jessica Wirth
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