• Drug treatment and drug rehab for individuals with disabilities

    Posted on July 24, 2013
    Research shows that substance abuse is a significant problem for individuals with physical, mental, or psychological disabilities. In fact, as a whole, individuals with disabilities use alcohol and other drugs as much or more than the general population, and they are at greater risk for problems associated with substance abuse (Moore, 1991). However, little research has examined substance abuse, drug treatment and drug rehab for individuals with disabilities. When treating a primary disability, healthcare practitioners may fail to recognize secondary substance abuse. Substance abuse disorders often reduce the already-scant resources of a disabled individual. For example, many disabled people have limited social resources and low socioeconomic status; these problems are often exacerba...
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  • Depression and obesity among young women in alcohol recovery

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    A recent study suggests that depression, obesity and alcohol use disorder are interrelated conditions among young adult women but not among men. A better understanding of the relationship between these interrelated conditions would help young women in alcohol recovery. A team of Washington University researchers collected data from young adults at the ages of 24, 27 and 30 (McCarty et. al., 2009). Nearly half of the 776 participants met the criteria for depression, obesity or alcohol use disorder at each time point. The study found that women with an alcohol use disorder (AUD) at age 24 were more than three times more likely to be obese at age 27. Women who were obese at age 27 were more than twice as likely to be depressed when they were 30. Women who were depressed at age 27 wer...
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  • Smoking may interfere with alcohol recovery

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Cigarette smoking is common among individuals with alcohol use disorder (AUD), and research suggests that smoking may interfere with alcohol recovery. Mon et. al. found that smoking slows the healing of brain damage during alcohol recovery (2009). Several studies have shown that AUD can damage the brain. AUD brain damage, commonly visible in the frontal cortex and parietal cortex, is at least partially reversible with sustained abstinence from drinking. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can show the extent of brain damaging by illustrating blood flow. Cerebral perfusion is a measure of the blood flow to brain tissue. Blood not only carries nutrients to the brain but also carries away metabolic byproducts. Good blood flow indicates healthy brain functioning. “In general, AUDs are...
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  • Alcohol recovery and domestic violence

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Among men who seek alcohol recovery, there are high rates of co-occurring alcohol dependence and intimate partner violence (IPV). IPV may include physical abuse, sexual abuse, threats, and emotional abuse directed toward current and former spouses and dating partners. A sensible approach for alcohol treatment for these men would need to include interventions that address both drinking and violence. Previous studies show that drinking increases physical abuse. In 2003, for example, Fals-Stewart (2003) conducted a study of 137 men which found that men who drink alcohol and have a predisposition for IPV are more likely to be violent on days when they drink alcohol. The study found that the odds of any male-to-female aggression were eight times higher on days when the men drink alcohol, ...
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  • Liver disease is caused by binge drinking OR daily drinking: Alcohol recovery requires both low consumption and non-drinking days

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Binge Drinking, Daily Drinking and Liver Disease   If you are aiming to establish an alcohol recovery by moderating alcohol as opposed to abstaining from alcohol, you may be tempted to believe that as long as you do not binge drink you will not experience any major negative health consequences.  Although binge drinking is clearly risky, the study reported on in this article found that daily drinking that was heavy (but not at binge levels) also can lead to liver disease.  There are other risks to consider also.  Although some studies suggest that moderate consumption of alcohol may offer cardiovascular benefits, other studies have found that regular drinking increases the risk of diseases such as cancer and liver disease. Is binge drinking causing problems in your life? We c...
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  • Olfactory impairments in alcohol dependence and alcohol recovery

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Olfactory impairment is one of the many potential side effects of alcohol dependency. In a non 12 step approach to recovery, individuals have the opportunity to completely abstain from alcohol and possibly decrease any potential olfactory impairments. Olfaction — the sense of smell — not only allows individuals to stop and smell the roses but also saves lives. Olfaction, for instance, might alert one to an unsafe food product or smoke from a fire. Unfortunately, an individual in alcohol recovery might not be awakened by the odor of smoke. Several previous studies have suggested that chronic alcohol use may damage olfactory function, but little is known about how this occurs. Previous studies indicate that alcohol-dependent individuals have impaired olfactory sensitivity, discriminati...
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  • Predictors of response to naltrexone in alcohol rehab

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Naltrexone is commonly prescribed in alcohol rehab. It is an opioid receptor antagonist that blocks opioid receptors and thus blocks the feeling of pleasure derived from alcohol consumption. Several double-blind clinical trials have shown that naltrexone is more effective than placebo in treatment for alcohol dependence. However, naltrexone may not work well for everyone. Its effectiveness varies among individuals. This has led some researchers to speculate that perhaps not all alcohol dependent individuals derive pleasure from an increase in endogenous opioids after alcohol consumption; perhaps there is a subtype of alcohol dependent individuals which may derive more benefit from naltrexone treatment. Certain clinical predictors might be able to identify individuals who would derive th...
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  • Alcohol rehab may improve gastrointestinal problems

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Nausea, abdominal discomfort, and other gastrointestinal symptoms are commonly reported by individuals after drinking alcoholic beverages. The alcohol itself may cause gastrointestinal problems by affecting the gastric emptying process. Researchers at the University Hospital of Heidelberg at Mannheim in Germany conduced a systematic study of the effects of ethanol, alcoholic beverages, and the non-alcohol components of alcoholic beverages on the gastric emptying of solid meals in the human body, and the results suggest that alcohol rehab may improve gastrointestinal problems (Franke et. al., 2005). The researchers recruited 16 fasting, healthy, male participants who received once weekly 300 ml of pure ethanol, beer, red wine, glucose, and water in a random order. The solutions were g...
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  • Alcohol rehab may decrease risk of head injury

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Binge drinking, or excessive alcohol consumption, is a major cause of accidents and trauma. Previous research shows that among individuals with head trauma specifically, alcohol has been a major cause of morbidity and mortality. One previous study found that the consumption of five or more drinks on one occasion increases the risk of sustaining an injury by an odds ratio of 3.4. A team of researchers from Finland interviewed trauma patients to investigate any relationships between different patterns of alcohol consumption to different types of trauma (Savola, Niemela & Hillbom, 2005). The results suggest that alcohol rehab for alcohol dependent individuals and alcohol treatment for binge drinkers may decrease the risk of head trauma. The study was conducted at Oulu University hos...
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  • Autobiographical memory problems in alcohol rehab

    Posted on July 23, 2013
    Evidence based addiction treatment can be used to help individuals in alcohol rehab to achieve sobriety. In a non 12 step approach to recovery, individualized treatments plans can be created to meet the needs of a specific person. An example of evidence based addiction treatment includes cognitive behavioral therapy in which this article describes in further detail. Depressed individuals and other clinical populations exhibit difficulty in recalling specific autobiographical memories, according to previous studies. (A “specific” memory refers to those about a single event lasting less than a day.) Typically this difficulty in recalling specific autobiographical memories is associated with poor psychological functioning, poor problem solving, and increased hopelessness. Researchers in...
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