Unearthing personal strengths during recovery

When a person resolves to break free from the shackles of an addiction, he or she sets the stage for a new start. Picturing a life free of an addiction is easy, however, the journey leading toward complete recovery could be hard for some. Recovery is not just a summation of detoxification, medication and counseling, it is much more than this. When one enters an addiction recovery process, after a while, the reins of an addiction start loosening up, the brain fog starts disappearing and one restores the lost mental clarity. This mental clarity, if put to constructive use, can help a person live a productive life. Read more

Opioid overdose more common than perceived

The opioid overdose crisis has been one of the most devastating blows to befall the United States that has taken more lives than any American war, natural disaster or acts of terror. The efforts to curtail the proliferation of this deadly outbreak has been met with much criticism as most of the populations continue to show the signs of opioid abuse and continue to witness a marked escalation in opioid overdose. Read more

Emotional abuse of children results in adult PTSD and opioid misuse

During their journey from an infant to an adult, children transverse through different life stages, which need both physical and emotional nourishment for healthy growth and development. Children who are either deprived of their necessities or are exposed to any kind of abuse during childhood tend to develop both physical and mental abnormalities.

In the United States, childhood emotional abuse is defined as an “injury to the psychological capacity or emotional stability of the child as evidenced by an observable or substantial change in behavior, emotional response, or cognition” and injury as evidenced by “anxiety, depression, withdrawal, or aggressive behavior.” In short, emotional abuse refers to actions and behaviors of parents, caregivers or other people from the society, which may have a negative impact on a child’s mental health. It includes insulting, neglecting, threatening and name-calling. Read more

Peer victimization leads to depressive symptoms and substance use, finds study

Children during late childhood and early adolescence are highly vulnerable to peer victimization. Research has suggested high prevalence of victimization among youth who have low social status, or with often-stigmatized characteristics, such as obesity and chronic health conditions. Boys are found to experience different types of peer victimization including physical aggression and verbal bullying as compared to girls.

In addition, researchers have highlighted the possibility of association between substance use and peer victimization. Youth who experience bullying in adolescence are more likely to indulge in substance use or abuse during adolescence that may continue into adulthood. On the similar lines, a recent study explored the association of peer victimization in early adolescence and the onset of substance use of marijuana, alcohol and tobacco during mid- to late adolescence. Read more

Women worried about breast cancer should stay away from alcohol, says study

Drinking alcohol is widely accepted in most cultures and no celebration is deemed complete without a toast or two. Men and women, alike, drink to rejoice or relieve stress. According to the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), around 5.3 million women, aged 18 or older (amounting to 4.2 percent women) and 325,000 females aged 12–17 years (2.7 percent of females in the age group) had alcohol use disorder (AUD). In the light of the findings, it is important to educate women about the risks of alcohol consumption. Read more

4 ways digital detox can boost your mental health

In the era of global advancements, technology has made life easier and comfortable. The constant attachment to electronic devices and internet has become a normal feature of everyday life. But various studies suggest that overuse of technology and social media can significantly impact physical and mental health. It may do more harm than good. Read more

Having parents by bedside eases opioid withdrawal symptoms in newborns

Opioid epidemic is wreaking havoc on Americans, and children are no exception. It is estimated that every 19 minutes, an infant is born in the United States with deadly symptoms of opiate withdrawal. Any form of substance abuse during pregnancy, be it cocaine, amphetamine, barbiturates, or opioids like heroin and methadone, endangers the life of both the baby and the mother. A baby exposed to opioids is also at a high risk of birth defects, intrauterine growth, premature delivery and seizures. Read more

Drunkorexia: A common problem among adolescents

Once an adolescent leaves home for college, he or she is exposed to new challenges both positive and negative. Though most experiences help young adults grow and mature. Certain habits and behavior, if inculcated, can ruin their lives, such as indulging in risky behavior and victimization, risky sexual behavior, as well as addiction to illicit substances. Alcohol abuse among the youth is a serious public health crisis in the United States. Every year, a number of students succumb to alcoholic overdoses and many others experience lifelong problems associated with drinking. Read more

Helping a friend who relapsed during rehab

An unfortunate and painful part of recovery is a situation in which someone from rehab relapses. Besides affecting the individual concerned, such an event can have an impact on the people around them, especially friends in recovery, who may start doubting their own chances of recovery. Friends may also feel disheartened that a co-recovering individual has lost the fight against sobriety. It may also be possible that the friend relapsing was an inspiration to others due to his/her determined approach during recovery. In addition to feelings of sadness and despair, relapse of a friend in rehab can lead to other emotional responses such as anger, concern and jealousy among mates. Read more

Role of general physicians in preventing substance abuse and maintaining sobriety

In the process of recovering from substance use disorders, an often overlooked entity is the general physician (GP). Various constituents of the recovery process, including therapists, sponsors, support groups, family and friends have an important part to play; however, GPs can provide a critical level of support in preventing substance abuse and maintaining sobriety during withdrawal. People who abuse substances usually suffer from one or more medical issues such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, liver disorders, lung disorders and cancer. In such a situation, GPs can play a vital role in ensuring the health and well-being of patients. Read more