Top ten of 2021 #1 – Nothing to mourn; just a drug addict

A tweet from a colleague affected me this week. The subject was stigma in substance use disorders and he related how, at the funeral of a relative who had died very young from a heroin overdose, a family member callously slandered the dead man and skillfully ‘othered’ him. The message was ‘he was not at … Continue reading Top ten of 2021 #1 – Nothing to mourn; just a drug addict

Alcohol deaths response – a whimper rather than a bang?

Given that there was a 17% year on year increase in fatalities and that the number of alcohol-specific deaths is a significant underestimate of deaths in which alcohol plays a part, I wondered in a tweet why there was a more muted reaction to the alcohol deaths than to the drug deaths. This touched a nerve it seems. A lot of responses were generated and I wanted to share some of the themes here.

Drinking when in recovery from other substances

Drink does not drown care, but waters it, and makes it grow fasterBenjamin Franklin When we consider the things that make us vulnerable to addiction – trauma, poverty, lack of opportunity, stress, stigma, genetics and environment, it’s no surprise that relapse and the development of problems with other substances occur after treatment. These problems don't … Continue reading Drinking when in recovery from other substances

Alcohol in the pandemic: the perfect storm

Are people drinking more or less in the UK since the pandemic started? The answer is ‘both’. While overall sales of alcohol are down (sales receipts from HMRC show a 2.4% drop Apr-July 2020), it looks like those who were drinking in the most hazardous fashion previously, are now drinking more. The British Medical Journal identifies a … Continue reading Alcohol in the pandemic: the perfect storm

Seeking Safety + 12 Step Facilitation = good outcomes

The Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment looks at Seeking Safety plus twelve step facilitation. Good news: Objective The Recovery Management paradigm provides a conceptual framework for the examination of joint impact of a focal treatment and post-treatment service utilization on substance abuse treatment outcomes. We test this framework by examining the interactive effects of a treatment for … Continue reading Seeking Safety + 12 Step Facilitation = good outcomes