Addiction is a complex phenomenon. Genetic, physiological, cultural and socioeconomic factors all appear to play a role. Now, new research in rats shows that heroin addiction activates brain circuits associated with negative emotional learning, which in turn creates persistent unpleasant emotions that a user suppresses with yet more opioids.
Treating addiction first requires that we understand it. As it turns out most people know little about what addiction actually is, and even less about what causes it. An expert breaks down the issue, so we can better understand what we're seeing unfold around the country.
In New Zealand, the Chief Censor adjusted the movie's rating due to "triggering" content. Is this a reasonable health-based decision to protect moviegoers?
Ours is a culture that prioritizes instant gratification, and is instinctually reflexive about taking a pill or other fix immediately to end pain. When, actually, it is pain that can in a number of conditions be our greatest gift.
With Wednesday marking this annual occasion, the new film is an important reminder of the profound suffering of those challenged by mental illness and the struggles shared by their loved ones. Optimizing mental health in life is worthwhile for everyone.
Self-injury mortality, albeit by suicide or lethal intoxication, spans a continuum that represents two sides of the same coin.
In a trend described as shocking, people desperate to obtain narcotics are intentionally injuring their pets to divert and abuse the veterinarian’s painkiller prescriptions. While terribly sad this is no surprise: After all, this is addiction.
In 2017, more than 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses. That's a staggering number -- almost double the number of car crash fatalities and nearly quadruple the number of homicides. Most drug overdoses involved some type of opioid. The dominant media narrative is that unscrupulous pharmaceutical companies and careless doctors are to blame. But this is only one part of a multifaceted problem, and a rather skewed perspective at that. The reality is that recreational drug users are driving the crisis, not pain patients. To understand how we arrive at that conclusion, a brief history of the opioid crisis is in order.
First fallacy: the mere existence of an opioid pill is why there is a crisis. Finding solutions requires proper identification of a problem. The time is now for the public narrative to follow suit.
It's refreshing that the First Lady's program shines a needed light on neonatal abstinence syndrome, also known as newborn opioid withdrawal. Despite the issue's ever-escalating importance, it was mostly ignored in the media's recent coverage. So here's what it's about.
The opioid crisis is at an all time high, with no sign of slowing down. What we are currently doing to stop the crisis is not working. One company has designed a product to help. It's an app that is easy to use, cheap, can be accessed by anyone with a phone, has been shown to help people during their recovery and just might make a difference.
For some, opioids aren't just painkillers; they serve as a lure into an addictive, self-destructive lifestyle. The sense of euphoria that opioids can cause proves irresistible to some addicts. For this reason, pharmaceutical companies are seeking to discover and develop non-opioid, non-addictive drugs to treat pain.