Suicide Prevention Day: Suicide and Addiction

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. and the 2nd leading cause of death for individuals ages 10-34.  The rate of suicide has increased 35% since 1999. (National Institute of Mental Health). The Centers for Disease Control reports that thoughts of suicide have nearly doubled during the ongoing pandemic.

Link to Addiction

There is a direct link between substance abuse and suicide. People with substance use disorders are about six times more likely to commit suicide than the general population. (Psychology Today, February 20, 2014)

Opioid use poses the highest risk. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services states that “people who suffer from substance use disorders involving prescription opioids may be twice as likely to attempt suicide than those who do not misuse prescription opioids. Some estimate that up to 30% of fatal opioid overdoses may be intentional as a means of suicide.

Alcohol abuse is also linked to the rate of suicide.  An article in Psychological Medicine said even in the short-term, acute alcohol use may be associated with a greater number of suicide attempts. It estimates that there is nearly 7 times increase in the likelihood of a suicide attempt in those drinking compared to those who did not drink alcohol.

The Next Door provides appropriate addiction treatment services in light of this substantial link.

We know the women who walk through our doors for addiction treatment also are at a statistically higher risk for mental illness and suicide. This is one of the top reasons that we employ trauma-informed therapists, so they can help women with co-occurring disorders develop coping skills and heal from addiction and mental illness.

Relationship to Childhood Trauma

Trauma-informed therapy is a necessity at The Next Door because both substance abuse and suicide can be linked to childhood trauma – or ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences) such as child abuse, death of a parent, or a parent with substance use disorder.

Individuals who score high on the Adverse Childhood Experiences Questionnaire are five times more likely to become alcoholics, and up to 46 times more likely to inject drugs. (The Kaiser Permanente and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Adverse Childhood Experiences Study.)  Most of these users simply lack coping methods to deal with the childhood trauma and learn to numb the pain with substance abuse. This lack of coping skills is also a predictor of suicidal behavior.

“People with histories of childhood trauma often develop difficulties with managing negative emotion, coping with stress, and maintaining optimism in the face of life stressors,” Lisa Cohen, PhD, a professor of psychiatry at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Beth Israel in New York, “Impulsivity is a risk factor for all types of reckless behavior, including suicidal behavior,” she added.

Warning Signs for Suicide

The National Institute of Mental Health lists warning signs you can look out for to help someone who is considering suicide. Some of these include:

  • An increase in drug/alcohol use.
  • Change in sleep and eating habits.
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or empty.
  • Increase in anxiety and agitation.
  • Exhibiting extreme mood swings.
  • Making a will and giving away personal items.
  • Reckless or impulsive behaviors such as risky driving.
  • Researching a plan for suicide or acquiring the means to harm oneself (firearms, pills, etc.).
  • Social isolation and withdrawal from friends and family.
  • Talking about wanting to die.
How to seek help

If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health emergency and may be at risk for suicide, help is available 24 hours a day seven days a  week at 855-CRISIS  (855-274-7471) or Text “TN” to 741-741.

If you know a woman who needs not only mental health help but addiction treatment services, contact The Next Door at 1-855-TND-HOPE (863-4673).

Wellness Master Q&A

Listen to the podcast here!

Get ready to dive in with Jason Cronan, MS, CSCS, CEP  as he speaks to special guest Morgan Coyner, Marketing and Communications Manager for The Next Door.  Make sure to listen to the end of the podcast because Morgan shares how to recognize anxiety and how to cope with both anxiety and a panic attacks. Listen as Morgan shares her story and how we can keep our mind healthy and free of anxiety.

Nashville’s “The Next Door” celebrates “Day of Hope” today

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) – Fear and isolation have been crippling for people in recovery during the pandemic.

Wednesday, March 10, “The Next Door” is celebrating TN’s “Day of Hope” to bring people back together, provide resources, and talk about hope found in recovery.

“Recovery, you don’t do that alone. You need community. So isolation for people struggling with mental health and addiction, and need that support, with that being essentially stripped away in a lot of ways has been really difficult,” said April Barnes, the Director of Outreach and Business Development at The Next Door.

That’s why Barnes and the organization are putting together the celebratory event, to lessen the isolation.

“We’re going to have people share their story of recovery and how they found hope, and what that looked like.”

Not only will stories be shared but Narcan training will also be given as Barnes points out, you never know when you may come across someone struggling with addiction and need the life saving medication.

 “There is hope for recovery and even when during a year when we’ve seen overdoses increase and suicide rates increase, and it’s just felt really dark, we just want this day to be about celebration and shining light onto the hope that’s found in recovery.”

The “Day of Hope” even begins at 2PM, in person, at “The Next Door” at 402 22nd Ave in Nashville.

Anyone is welcome to join to share in the hope of recovery and to learn more about addiction.

Leading Forward Podcast with Christie Berger

No Matter What Podcast

Headshot with Text that says No Matter What and When you experience


Marketing and Communications Manager, Morgan Coyner, sat down in the studio with Hanna Seymour to record an episode of the “No Matter What Podcast.”

In this episode, Morgan talks about the loss of her mother to an opioid overdose, the deep grief she felt in that season, and how her faith helped her through it all. At the end, she talks about The Next Door and the work we do for women ready to live a life of recovery.

You can listen to the podcast here.

Lightning 100 Interview – Nashville By Nicole

Take 2: Promises Behavioral Health and The Next Door

The pandemic has led to an increase in substance abuse in Middle Tennessee and created challenges for those in recovery. So places like Promises Behavioral Health and The Next Door have adapted adding COVID protocols and more, to get people the help they need especially now during National Recovery Month.

During National Recovery Month, both The Next Door and Promises not only celebrates those in recovery, they also provide virtual activities for understanding and coping with the challenges of recovery for both the individuals and families.

The ways they’ve adapted are helping people heal.

Begin recovery now. Visit Promises Behavioral Health or The Next Door online.

Today’s Take 2 segment was sponsored by Promises Behavioral Health. For Take 2 segments click here.


Segment posted September 10, 2020

CEO Statement on Racism, Diversity, and Current Events

COVID-19 Response

This page includes our most up-to-date program adaptations and organization updates regarding COVID-19. 

The Next Door’s Management Team has created a response plan to prevent the spread of COVID-19 virus within the TND community and to maximize the health and safety of our clients and staff. This plan is evaluated as new information about the virus becomes available.

Until further notice, we have:

  • Implemented pre-admissions phone screening and screening for symptoms upon arrival
  • Implemented a telehealth option for our Intensive Outpatient Program. Call 855-TND-HOPE (863-4673) for more information or to register.
  • Masks are required in all common areas of our facility
  • Suspended acceptance of any used clothing donations. If you still wish to donate, please buy brand new items and have them sent directly to:

The Next Door
402 22nd Ave N
Nashville, TN 37203

The Next Door is currently not providing COVID-19 testing on-site. For more information on this decision, click here.

Please see the following for more information:

Letter from our Medical Director

Opportunity Behind The Next Door

Written by Tracy Korney, Posted November 22, 2019

We all have imperfections we like to hide.

But for those battling drug or alcohol abuse, hiding can destroy lives and families for generations.

33-year-old Jennifer, who asked that we keep her last name private, calls herself a “master hider.”

She says she started sneaking alcohol, cold medicine, and cough syrup at age 11 or 12.

“Yeah, for most addicts, you try whatever you can get your hands on,” said Jennifer.

A car accident at 17 put her on painkillers, the drug that would become her full-fledged addiction.

“So I used that as an excuse for the next 3 years, until I got arrested,” she added.

The courts forced her to enroll in a recovery program as part of her deal.

She says she called multiple recovery centers from jail, but no one would take her calls.

Except one: The Next Door.

“I had a bed date within 10 minutes,” she said. “They answered not just one time, but every time. You do not understand how important that part is, okay, because it starts to rebuild faith in people. And that’s one of the things you lose the quickest. You lose faith in people.”

Amanda Dunlap is The Next Door’s director, a faith-based, multi-story treatment facility on Charlotte Avenue in Nashville.

It offers everything from medically monitored detox, to residential and outpatient treatment.

Dunlap first worked as a therapist there for 12 years, then as director for four.

“We’re creating a community for women,” Dunlap said. “They go through the treatment journey together, and they have the same therapist, care manager, nursing staff. The same support staff are working with them from day one.”

Off the lobby sits a sun-drenched chapel.

The center’s key values, such as hope, faith, wholeness, and love, grace the walls.

“Many women walk in the doors feeling that loneliness, so we are wanting to connect them to something that goes way beyond us in this building,” Dunlap added.

“They never let you NOT know you’re cared about here,” said Jennifer. “It has saved my life and given me hope. Everything has changed. You start from learning you are not worthless–not only that you’re not alone, probably the biggest thing–but you have worth.”


Link to full article here.