Alcohol Use Disorder

According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, moderate drinking is up to 1 drink per day for women and up to 2 drinks per day for men. SAMHSA defines heavy drinking as drinking 5 or more drinks on the same occasion on each of 5 or more days in the past 30 days. When one…

Drugs and Driving

When one uses illicit drugs or misuses prescription drugs behind the wheel, driving can be unsafe just as drunk driving is unsafe. Drugged driving puts all who share the road at risk, including the driver and any passengers. According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), in 2016, 11.8 million people…

Substance Abuse in the Military

According to the 2008 Department of Defense Survey of Health Related Behaviors among Active Duty Military Personnel, 2.3 percent of military personnel were past-month users of an illicit drug, compared with 12 percent of civilians. A policy of zero tolerance for drug use among DoD personnel was instituted in 1982. However, in spite of the…

In The News: Warnings of Counterfeit Oxycodone

On May 7, 2018, police issued a press release in Gulfport, Mississippi to make the public aware of counterfeit oxycodone tablets. Although those illicitly purchasing these tablets believe they are receiving oxycodone, they may actually be receiving fentanyl which could be deadly. After narcotics detectives seized multiple blue pills marked “A215”, the pills were analyzed…

Comorbidity and Drug Addiction

Comorbidities are two or more disorders or illnesses that occur in the same person. Many people who are addicted to drugs are also diagnosed with other mental disorders and vice versa. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, these disorders could be caused by overlapping environmental triggers, overlapping genetic vulnerabilities, developmental disorders, or involvement…

Therapeutic Communities

Therapeutic Communities (TCs) began in the late 1950s as a form of long term residential treatment for substance use disorders. In its beginning stages, TCs were run solely by peers in recovery, and most did not allow program participants to use any medication. However, as decades passed, these communities began to incorporate a more comprehensive…

Specific Needs of Women in Substance Abuse

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration published a Quick Guide addressing specific needs that women may have when undergoing substance abuse treatment. It also suggested strategies for treatment that take into account women’s experiences and their unique biopsychosocial and cultural needs. For example, women are more likely to assume primary caregiver roles which…

Study: Examining Codeine Misuse Across Countries

A study was conducted among pharmacists in South Africa, Ireland, and the United Kingdom to analyze their opinions and expertise regarding codeine misuse. Codeine is one of the most widely available opiates across the world—and it is available as an over the counter drug in all three of the aforementioned countries (mostly in lower dosages…

Substance Use Disorders in Jail and Prison

While it is estimated that 8.5 percent of the general public aged 18 or older have substance use disorders, jails and prisons have a higher and disproportionate percentage of people with substance use disorders—53 percent and 68 percent respectively. Some of the challenges that incarcerated inmates with substance use disorders face are: they are less…

Substance Abuse in the Aging Population

Approximately one in five older adults have one or more mental health or substance use conditions. Misusing drugs can sometimes be a special concern amongst this population because they receive a high proportion of prescription drugs due to increased likelihood of being prescribed long term and multiple medications. Age related changes in drug metabolism, possible…