Tony Hoffman speaks to Wiregrass about overcoming substance abuse
In the year 2020, the CDC reported well over 91,000 drug overdose deaths that occurred in the United States.
DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - In the year 2020, the CDC reported well over 91,000 drug overdose deaths that occurred in the United States.
Tony Hoffman is a nationally recognized speaker who has overcome addiction and recently shared his journey to the Wiregrass in honor of International Opioid Awareness Day.
“I want people to see that there’s things that we can do differently to help individuals or see more people do things that I’ve done with my life,” Hoffman said.
Hoffman is on a mission to help people who are struggling with substance abuse, a lifestyle he once knew all too well. He has overcome opioid addiction, homelessness and prison. He has now been sober for 15 years.
“I think the most challenging part for many individuals like myself is overcoming the old thinking patterns,” Hoffman said. “The instinct of how we act where it doesn’t actually have to be thought about recognizing that process and changing the instinctual process to something new is still something I’m working on.”
After beating that challenge, Hoffman became a BMX champion, Olympic coach and founded the PH Wellness treatment center in California.
But his work doesn’t stop there, he currently travels the country to spread his message of recovery.
“Through my own story and my own struggles most people would say I couldn’t be helped, and yet I’m in this position today with long term sobriety,” Hoffman said.
Over the last 13 years, Hoffman has brought the conversation to the table by talking about perspectives some people may not see when it comes to struggling with mental health and addiction.
“Where they say, ‘Oh, I guess didn’t think about how these two are interconnected and something like this can actually happen, now it makes sense,’” Hoffman said.
He strives to instill a new level of hope and inspiration to people that are struggling with addiction.
“You don’t have to live that way,” Hoffman said. “You don’t have to struggle every day. You don’t have to be in fear every day, but you do have to surrender and you do have to ask for help and when you ask for help you have to be willing to take the suggestions and listen to the people that are trying to help you to get the help that you need.”
Here in the Wiregrass, Susie Kingry, chief operating officer at SpectraCare, said there has been an increase in overdose, especially with fentanyl.
“Fentanyl overdose is very real and we have seen an increase in individuals seeking help due to fentanyl abuse,” Kingry said. “We want to bring awareness to that and let every know there is help available.”
Kingry said bringing awareness is crucial. Survivors, like Hoffman, sharing their story of recovery can help others.
“Those who are actively using, their family members to know there is hope,” Kingry said. “We can recover from addiction and also that they are not alone in their battle.”
Kingry said having no income and no insurance does not act as a barrier. She said the most important thing to do is to the make the call.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse you can call SpectraCare for help at 1-800-951-4357.
Subscribe to our News 4 newsletter and receive the latest local news and weather straight to your email every morning. Get instant notifications on top stories from News 4 by downloading our mobile apps.
Copyright 2022 WTVY. All rights reserved.