Articles

New Study: Meth Far More Dangerous to Adolescent Brains

New Study: Meth Far More Dangerous to Adolescent Brains

Posted on May 23rd, 2015

The highly addictive drug methamphetamine (“meth”) causes dramatically more damage to the brains of adolescents than to those of adults, a new study has found.

Researchers from South Korea and the University of Utah reported that MRI brain scans of chronic meth abusers revealed damage to the gray matter and white matter of all users, affecting important cognitive abilities and how the brain regions communicate.

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Taking Inventory of the Relationships in Your Life

Taking Inventory of the Relationships in Your Life

Posted on May 21st, 2015

You may be familiar with a Boy Scout rule that encourages cleaning up after yourself: “Leave the campground better than you found it.”

This isn’t always easy in practice, especially for those whose behaviors in the throes of addiction left chaos and damage in their wake. To begin anew, taking inventory can be an enlightening and empowering way to tidy up the messes these behaviors might have created in your relationships. Better to dismantle the piles before they become unmanageable.

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Study Identifies Teens at Highest Risk for Alcohol Blackouts

Study Identifies Teens at Highest Risk for Alcohol Blackouts

Posted on May 19th, 2015

Certain groups of teenage drinkers have heightened chances of drinking rapidly enough and heavily enough to experience alcohol-related blackouts, according to new findings from a team of British and American researchers.

Alcohol blackouts are episodes of short-term amnesia associated with the excessive and frequently rapid intake of liquor or other alcoholic beverages. Many of the people who experience these episodes meet the criteria for diagnosing alcohol dependence (alcoholism) and/or non-addicted alcohol abuse. In a study published in January 2015 in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, researchers from two American universities and one British university looked at the common patterns of alcohol-related blackout that appear in teenagers and young adults between the ages of 15 and 19. The researchers also looked at the factors that help predict blackouts in any given person in this age range.

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Do You Need Rehab for Internet Addiction?

Do You Need Rehab for Internet Addiction?

Posted on May 16th, 2015

In this modern age, with devices constantly within reach, we all seem to suffer from some degree of obsession with being connected. Whether you check your texts or emails every few minutes instead of waiting for a notification, lose yourself and hours of time clicking on links or perusing Facebook or start to get sweaty and feel anxious when you can’t find your smartphone or tablet, you understand how easy it is to get hooked on being connected. For some people, this obsession can become an addiction. If you are contemplating your possible addiction to being online, you might want to know if rehab is right for you.

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Federal Law Challenged Over Marijuana’s Medicinal Value

Federal Law Challenged Over Marijuana’s Medicinal Value

Posted on May 14th, 2015

A federal court judge has agreed to examine federal marijuana law for the first time in decades. The issue focuses on removing marijuana from classification alongside powerfully addictive drugs of no medicinal value, such as heroin and LSD. But what does the case potentially mean in practical terms for the general public?

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Teen Drinkers Under the Influence of Event Sponsorship

Teen Drinkers Under the Influence of Event Sponsorship

Posted on May 12th, 2015

It’s marketing 101. Go where the customers are. In the case of alcohol brands, companies may well be creating customers for the future.

In the first study of its kind, Boston University found teens and others under age 21 are more likely to consume brands that sponsor sports, music, and arts and entertainment events.

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Abuse in Childhood, Domestic Violence in Adulthood Prime Victims for Substance Abuse

Abuse in Childhood, Domestic Violence in Adulthood Prime Victims for Substance Abuse

Posted on May 6th, 2015

The combination of childhood maltreatment and intimate partner violence exposure during adulthood substantially increase risks for the onset of substance use disorder (diagnosable substance abuse/addiction), new findings from a group of U.S. researchers indicate.

Child maltreatment and intimate partner violence (IPV) are two relatively common sources of emotional trauma exposure in the U.S. and many other countries. In a study published in January 2015 in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, researchers from Columbia University examined the effect that the combined experience of child maltreatment and IPV exposure has on the chances that an adult man or woman will develop an alcohol- or drug-related case of substance use disorder. The researchers concluded that the two forms of trauma have an additive impact on the risks for diagnosable substance problems.

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Closeup of a smiling businessman with executives in the background

Enjoying Life Without Drinking

Posted on May 4th, 2015

Getting sober doesn’t mean living a life that is always dreary and somber. Some of the best days of your life are still ahead, but it may not seem like a lot of fun at first. You may feel nostalgic when you think of some of the parties you’ve attended and the wild excitement of letting loose while under the influence of alcohol. Recovery is a learning process, and you may have to learn how to have fun without alcohol.

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Video Game Addiction: A Recovery Story

Video Game Addiction: A Recovery Story

Posted on May 1st, 2015

IMAGE_Video Game Addiction_Doan and wifeAndrew Doan, MD, PhD, is a trained eye surgeon, father of three, a professor — and a recovering video game addict. Astonishingly he made it through medical school at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine while playing a real-time strategy game like StarCraft for 7 to 14 hours a day. He’d started gaming at the uncharacteristically old age of 24 and got married a year later. Unhinged by lack of sleep and irritability when not gaming, he freely admits, “I was abusive to my wife,” Dr. Doan says.

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Mature woman comforts crying adult daughter with baby at home

When Supermom Becomes Drinking Mom

Posted on April 29th, 2015

Being supermom isn’t easy. You have a job. You take care of the kids. You feel like everyone relies on you and you feel the pressure to keep up with what other moms are doing for their kids, even if they don’t work outside the home. To cope with it all you reach for a glass of wine after dinner. That’s not so bad, right? They say a glass of wine a day may actually be good for you. So when does that one glass of wine transition to problem drinking?

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Why Do Retired Adults Develop Alcohol and Drug Problems?

Why Do Retired Adults Develop Alcohol and Drug Problems?

Posted on April 27th, 2015

Recent research indicates that specific circumstances of retirement and major life changes associated with growing older largely explain the risks for significant alcohol and drug problems in older adults who leave the workforce.

Alcohol problems and (to a lesser extent) drug problems appear in substantial numbers of older Americans who have stopped working. However, the underlying reasons for the substance-related risks in these individuals are not well-understood. In a study published in December 2014 in the journal Work, Aging and Retirement, researchers from Cornell University sought to identify some of the major risk factors for alcohol and drug abuse in American retirees. These researchers concluded that retirees’ substance problems largely stem from a range of difficulties associated with the reasons for retirement and exposure to aging-related life changes.

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Young Teen Drinkers at High Risk for Alcoholism as Adults

Young Teen Drinkers at High Risk for Alcoholism as Adults

Posted on April 24th, 2015

New findings from a group of Australian researchers demonstrate that a preteen or teenager who starts drinking before age 18 is unusually likely to fall into a pattern of addiction-supporting heavy drinking as a young adult.

Figures from the National Institute on Drug Abuse indicate that roughly 41 percent of American teenagers consume at least some amount of alcohol in a given year. Unfortunately, teens who drink alcohol knowingly or unknowingly expose themselves to number of serious, severe or life-threatening problems. In a study published in February 2015 in the International Journal of Drug Policy, researchers from Australia’s National Drug Research Institute gauged the impact that consuming any amount of alcohol before reaching age 18 has on the odds that a teenager or younger child will drink heavily (and thereby steeply increase the risks for diagnosable alcohol use disorder) after the transition into adulthood.

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Are You Texting More Than Talking?

Are You Texting More Than Talking?

Posted on April 20th, 2015

When you’re together, you feel that you’re completely in sync. There’s never a lull in the conversation. He makes you laugh. He always gets the door. He helps his elderly neighbor bring in her groceries. And the sex? It’s amazing. You feel like he could be “the one.” But there’s just one thing: You rarely, if ever, talk on the phone.

In between getting together you rely on cyber-communication: texting, e-mailing, Facebook messaging. When you call, he rarely picks up. You watch your friends on the phone with their significant others and your stomach sinks. Why doesn’t he want to actually talk to you? You ask your friends what they think. The consensus isn’t good: If you’re texting more than talking, it’s not a real relationship. Or is it?

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