Tag Archives: addiction

Is Addiction to Blame for Violence Against Partners

violenceResearch published recently by the University of Michigan revealed an alarming fact, that 1 out of every 5 men in the United States admit to having been violent towards his partner at some point. The study was conducted with a population sample intended to be representative of the nation as a whole, casting the spotlight on a disturbing aspect of domestic relations in American society. It was released in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, using data gathered from 2001 to 2003 and made available in the National Comorbidity Survey-Replication, which involved survey responses from around 10,000 people nationwide. Continue reading

Can Addiction Be Predicted

failed paperThe subject of addiction and what causes it is rife with theories.  Any area of life or behavior which is problematic and not well understood all too frequently lends itself to a plethora of complexities and proposed solutions which ultimately prove unworkable and do not result in a betterment of the condition.  So it is with addiction; the speculation and theorizing as to what causes it and what cures it—and whether or not it can be genetically predicted. Continue reading

Is Krokodil the Worst Drug in the World?

krokodil user with rotten fleshIf there were some kind of competition for Worst Drug, I’m sure krokodil would be in the running.

If you have not heard of this drug, is a home-cooked drug that starts with codeine extracted from headache pills. In Russia, where this drug originated, you can buy these pills over the counter. Even though the laws have changed in the last couple of years to try to prevent people from making this drug, you can still buy enough of the pills to cook up this drug. The reason you can still get this drug is because before the laws changed, some pharmacies made 25% of their money by selling this drug. When the laws limited the number of the pills you could buy, many pharmacies just cooperated with people who wanted to circumvent the law and get more pills than allowed.

Once an addicted person has the pills, he cooks out the codeine by using a mixture of toxic, harmful chemicals. Phosphorus (from the strike strips on boxes of matches), iodine, gasoline, paint thinner, hydrochloric acid all leave their traces in the dirty orange liquid that results from the cooking process. Excessive amounts of zinc, iron and lead contaminate this mix. But the cravings for this drug are so intense that the addicts will inject it into their veins, despite the damage it quickly does. Continue reading

America’s Seniors Struggle with Addiction

elderly and prescription drug abuseThere’s been plenty of news and media coverage of the addiction of teens and young adults to drugs or alcohol. After all, these are the years of greatest drug abuse, on average. But now, USA Today brings a different drug situation to light: the problem of our older adults becoming addicted to prescription drugs.

After an analysis of government figures on drug abuse, USA Today realized that doctors were prescribing addictive prescription drugs for American’s seniors are a rapidly increasing rate. Painkillers, anti-anxiety medication – the prescription pad is an easy – if unthinking – solution to complaints by seniors. But there are some significant problems resulting from this practice:

• Rising overdose deaths
• A jump up in emergency room visits due to these drugs
• More admissions to addiction treatment programs. Continue reading

Beyond the World Cup – Brazilian Street Children and Inhalants

world cup brazilWhen the World Cup is held, the world seems to hold its collective breath. Unlike sports that are primarily American – football, basketball and, to a lesser degree, baseball – soccer truly is international. If this year is anything like earlier years, there will be as many as three billion people watching some or all of these games on television.

But as early-arriving news sources have revealed, there is a more sinister side to Recife, the city in Brazil that hosts this event. Many children are forced into prostitution in Recife, children in their early teens or even boys and girls as young as 10.

To deal with the pain and anguish of abandonment, hunger and prostitution, these children become addicted to using inhalants, usually a kind of glue they call “cola.” Continue reading

Australian Athlete Fights his Way Back After Methamphetamine Addiction

matthew micham book methamphetamine addictionA courageous young man has published a book about his trip to the very top of the Olympic diving world, Australian Matthew Mitcham. In 2008, Matthew executed the highest scoring single dive ever seen at the Olympics. He got four perfect-10 scores on a back two-and-a-half somersault with two-and-a-half twists, a phenomenally difficult dive.

You can watch that dive here, if you wish: http://www.olympic.org/videos/mitcham-performs-highest-scoring-dive-in-olympic-history. It’s truly stunning.

It was a dive that enabled him to take the gold medal home. Ironically, after the Olympics, he did not get rated as the number one diver by an international ranking organization, he was ranked number two. He saw this as a failure and along with existing personal problems he had long struggled with, he sought out methamphetamine as an escape. Continue reading

Fourteen Rules When Dealing with Addiction

14 Rules you must never break when dealing with addictionWhen you’ve got a loved one who is addicted, it seems like all the rules change. The ways you have learned to care about and be patient with them just don’t work any more. The problem is that it often takes family a very long time to learn this lesson. It’s very hard to shift gears this thoroughly – after all, as we learn to be parents, aunts, uncles, sons and daughters or grandparents, we learn to forgive and trust.

When drug or alcohol addiction enter the scene, either the rules must change or everyone may lose the game. It becomes necessary to suspend trust and admit the problem to other family members or one’s minister or doctor. Old rules about privacy may need to be tossed out if the addicted person is to get help. Continue reading

Where Did All this Heroin Come From?

heroin abuseOnce upon a time, not so long ago, it was inconceivable that the average American would be addicted to heroin. It was only something that maybe people out on the fringes of society would do. Maybe bikers or jazz musicians or people who spent a lot of time in jail.

This never really was the truth, but it was the impression most middle class Americans had. No one THEY knew would ever use heroin, much less be addicted to it.

Fast forward to this decade. The growing heroin problem in this country is overwhelming public health departments. Not a day goes by that I don’t see a news article about a state or county that is trying to come to grips with overdose deaths and drug trafficking. Like this article from The Pocono Record: Continue reading

Dramatic Increase of Traffic Fatalities Involving Marijuana

Since Commercialization of Medical Marijuana in Colorado, “Dramatic Increase” of Traffic Fatalities Involving Marijuana-Positive Drivers

fatal car crashThis blog post is not really about medical use of marijuana or even recreational use of marijuana.

It’s just about the fact that some people lose everything when they become addicted to drugs. That includes alcohol, pills, heroin, cocaine or marijuana. Sometimes, that “everything” includes a person’s life.

A new study just released by the University of Colorado Denver states the following: Continue reading

An Inspiring Town Hall Meeting on Prescription Drug Abuse

prescription drug abuseOn the 13th of May, there was a Town Hall meeting at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg Public School of Health on prescription drug abuse. President Clinton opened the meeting, and those who provided testimony included Margaret Hamburg of the Food and Drug Administration and the Honorable Patrick Kennedy, former US Representative.

There are a few comments that caught my interest, one being: “Pharma is the largest lobby on Capitol Hill.” The presence of so many pharma lobbyists will certainly tend to support the approval of new drugs like the new formulation of hydrocodone, Zohydro. Hydrocodone is already the most-prescribed medication we have. Another comment made was “Seventy percent of bronchitis patients receive a prescription for antibiotics when they would be appropriate in only 5% of the cases.” This was stated to illustrate the over-prescribing done by many doctors. Continue reading