Competitive sports may trigger drug addiction in teens, finds study

Sports form an integral part of a teen’s growth and development. Apart from eliminating the risk of serious health complications, outdoor games affect teens psychologically, mentally and socially. But, a new study done by researchers from the University of Michigan has revealed the side effects of high-contact sports like hockey, wrestling, football and ice hockey. Teens who play high-contact sports, such as hockey, are at a greater risk for heroin use and nonmedical use of prescription opioids observed the study published in the “Journal of Adolescent Health” in March 2017. Read more

Coping with post-acute withdrawal symptoms

The journey from addiction to recovery is not easy. When people try to recover from alcohol abuse or from an addiction to narcotic drugs like heroin, they might find it difficult to deal with the cravings long after they have become sober. Alterations in the brain developed after years of abuse cause an individual to experience symptoms of withdrawal long after he or she had undergone a drug addiction treatment program. Read more

Handy tips to treat benzodiazepine addiction

Using medications to treat mental health conditions, such as anxiety and depression, is one of the most preferred treatment options in the United States. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), benzodiazepines, such as alprazolam, clonazepam, diazepam, and lorazepam are frequently used medications for a short-term management of anxiety. Read more

Finding ways to treat drug overdoses in correctional facilities

Alcohol and substance abuse are rampant among jail inmates in the United States. Overdosing incidents are common inside prison walls due to illegal drugs flowing into the country’s most guarded prisons. In many instances, inability to medicate or provide timely support proves to be fatal. Studies have shown that most of the overdose deaths can be curbed by enabling pharmacies to provide naloxone, a drug that reverses the effects of overdose, through opt-out strategies. Although many states have passed the 911 Medical Amnesty Law, which aims to reduce drug overdoses, there has been a steep rise in overdose deaths in recent years. Read more

Memory loss in marijuana users: The mitochondria connection

The most commonly used illicit drug in the United States, marijuana had 22.2 million users in the past month, as observed by the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). According to the Monitoring the Future Survey, in 2016, 9.4 percent and 5.4 percent of class eight graders reported marijuana use in the past year and the past month (current use), respectively. Among 10th graders, the prevalence of marijuana use was found to be 23.9 percent in the past year and 14.0 percent in the past month. Grade 12 students reported the highest prevalence (35.6 percent) of marijuana use during the year surveyed, 6.0 percent accepted to have used the drug daily or near daily. Read more

There is nothing like ‘moderate drinking’ when it comes to health

It is a wake-up call for all those who have been serving themselves generous doses of alcohol in the name of health, as a study has questioned the so-called benefits of moderate drinking. Many studies link moderate drinking with lower risk of cardiovascular disease. The benefits are known to be enjoyed alike by those who have no known heart-related ailment and those who have high risk of developing a heart attack or stroke. People living with type 2 diabetes, those with existing cardiovascular disease or gallstones could also get benefited from moderate drinking. Read more

New law increases marijuana dispensaries from 40 to 60 in Ohio

Several American states have laws that broadly legalize marijuana for medicinal use. However, a few states have the most expensive laws in place, under which pot is legalized even for recreational use. Overall, there is more public support today for marijuana reforms than ever before, with more than half of the country advocating the legalization act. Read more

Long-term use of alcohol in adolescence alters electrical activity in brain, says study

The age at which adolescents start drinking is lowering gradually, as highlighted by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism that nearly 33 percent of teens have had at least one drink by the time they are 15 years of age. Early-age drinking is dangerous and can lead to serious alcohol-related problems in later life. Sadly, when adolescents start drinking at an early age, they are more prone to engage in behaviors that are harmful to themselves or others. Recent studies have shown that alcoholism is a chronic disease caused by certain factors such as genetics, predisposition to alcohol, and other social and psychological factors. Read more

How to stay sober when everybody around is drinking

When someone tries to stay away from one’s old habit of drinking, the biggest hurdle comes in the form of people who are drinking alcohol around him or her. Becoming sober as a matter of preference is not easy. It requires a lot of grit and determination to say a firm “no” to alcohol, especially in a social setting. But when the deteriorating health demands abstinence, one is left with no choice but to refrain from drinking at any cost. Even a mild slip up may lead to a relapse and mitigate the benefits of a detox.

For people recovering from alcohol addiction, the first few months can be extremely difficult. It takes time to conscientiously avoid alcohol in places where social drinking is a norm. However, though difficult, staying sober post recovery is not impossible. All it takes is some self-control and a persistent effort to resist the urge. Read more

Why crystal meth abuse gives one a gaunt look

Scientists have probably figured out why methamphetamine (also known as meth or crystal meth) abuse gives people a gaunt look or induces striking changes in their physical features. According to a study by the scientists from the Italian Institute of Technology and UC Irvine, published in the open-access online journal PLOS ONE, meth abuse leads to stark abnormalities in the fat metabolism of cells.

This malfunction triggers a rise in a type of molecule in the cells that causes premature aging and cell death. Further research has revealed that crystal meth by damaging the brain and other body organs causes diseases related to aging, such as coronary atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and pulmonary fibrosis (scarring of the lungs). Therefore, it is essential to understand the consequences of abusing crystal meth to avert the above-mentioned adverse effect. Read more