Momenta, an addiction treatment center that recently opened in Glenwood Springs, Colo., offers both outpatient and inpatient mental health and substance use disorder services.
Momenta was founded by Mandy Owensby. As a person who has been in recovery for nearly six years and is a mother of two, Owensby wanted to create a program that specifically serviced both women and mothers after her previous difficulties finding programs that would accept her with her children.
Prior to opening the addiction treatment center, she worked in human services. During that time she noticed that there was a lack of local treatment resources for patients, who instead had to be referred to programs out of state.
Momenta clinician Bailey Allison said that economic troubles have contributed to rising addiction trends in the state. She added that a lack of psychiatrists and physicians to provide treatment in rural communities such as Glenwood Springs has compounded the problem.
There’s been a rise in substance abuse and suicides in mountain communities, Owensby said.
The Colorado Department of Health & Environment estimated that nearly 960 total drug poisoning deaths occurred in 2017. This number represents a 5-year high for the state.
Gov. John Hickenlooper recently passed a law to maintain the Substance Abuse Trend and Response Task Force in Colorado.
In October of 2017, the task force instigated a subcommittee that focused on protecting and supporting children whose parents or caregivers have substance use disorders. Many mothers with substance use disorders fear losing custody of their children, Owensby said. She added that many of them may not seek help until their substance abuse becomes severe.
Momenta staff utilize a holistic approach to recovery, not only focusing on mother-child relationships, but on the entire family. Based on a 12-step model, the treatment center offers family therapy, fitness, nutrition and other courses for patients.
Aside from Momenta, Owensby said, only three other programs — in Grand Junction, Denver and Pueblo — offer similar services.
The facility consists of two buildings. The first houses 18 women in the treatment program, while the second one provides room for six women who have completed treatment and are transitioning back into society.
Owensby requires patients to commit to a minimum of 90 days of treatment. She believes that the longer they receive treatment services, the more likely they will be able to sustain a long-term recovery plan. A longer treatment program may also reduce ‘triggers’ in a patient lives that may lead to a drug relapse.
In her work with outpatient treatment centers, Allison has worked with patients with addictions who have also experienced trauma in their lives. Depending on the severity of the trauma, they may be at risk of developing substance use disorders when they’re older.
She added that if all people understand the connection between drug addiction and trauma, then it can be easier for them to see substance use not as a choice but a medical condition.
Momenta’s opening has generated much interest from those seeking addiction treatment. Owensby believes that they may soon have to place people on a wait list.