Addictive Drugs

Using Medicine to Treat Alcoholism: Where We Are, Where We’re Going

A growing list of pharmacological options gives addiction recovery a boost
For as long as people have been drinking alcohol, there have attempts to use medicines to help them stop. Today, physicians who specialize in addiction treatment (American Society of Addiction Medicine, American Association of Addiction Psychiatry) use a variety of pharmacological approaches to help patients control their alcohol use, and the list of possibilities is growing rapidly. When used along with social support and psychological and...
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General

3 Things You Should Know If You’re Struggling With Anxiety

There’s no easy fix but you can take steps to get your life back
We can’t erase all anxiety from our lives, and we shouldn’t want to. A little anxiety spurs us to prepare and act, and keeps us alert to potential threats. But sometimes anxiety persists and deepens, becoming a dark cloud that dampens our pleasures and causes our world to shrink. Instead of helping us live life, it interferes with it.

When this happens, it’s time...
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General

10 Ways of Thinking That Drag You Down

Cognitive distortions hurt mood and behavior, but they can be overcome
Here’s a troubling truth about the human mind: It loves to be negative — it’s nature’s way of keeping us alert to danger — and those negative thoughts are often automatic and full of distortions.

That means you may find yourself being dragged down by thoughts that have little basis in reality, without even being fully aware what’s to blame. Such distorted negativity has consequences, sometimes...
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Mental Health

5 Gifts of Gratitude

When you’re sitting at the holiday table this Thanksgiving trying to decide what you’re thankful for, don’t forget to add this item to the list: gratitude.

The ability to feel grateful and to express it is one of nature’s greatest gifts, research shows, but the emotion doesn’t come naturally to everyone. It can be cultivated, however, by focusing on the positives in your life rather than allowing your attention to be captured only...
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Addiction

3 Ways to Tackle Addiction Before It Starts

Think your life hasn’t been touched by addiction? Think again. We are all affected, both in terms of missing out on the lost potential of those struggling with drugs or alcohol and in dealing with the wreckage left behind.

About a third of hospital costs are linked to addiction and substance use, for example, according to statistics from The Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia...
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Mental Health

What Schools Really Need to Teach: Mental Health

September is Suicide Prevention Month. It’s also the month when most students head back to school for a new year of challenges. That makes this a fitting time to ask: Are we teaching our kids what they really need to know?

For all our worry about things such as Common Core, standardized tests and class sizes, a bigger concern should be how resilient our students are. How able...
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Addiction

3 Things an Addiction Expert Wishes Every Parent Knew

Each day you can keep your child away from alcohol or other drugs, the better.

If there’s a common thread among the people we treat for addiction, it’s this — many started young. Multiple studies confirm it: The sooner a person experiments with drugs or alcohol, the more likely it is to become a problem for them.

For example, researchers have found that about 40% of those who started drinking at age 14 or...
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