InvisAlert Solutions – ObservSMART

Archive for the ‘Winter 2014 Issue’ Category

We Don’t Treat Brains, We Treat People

The US government estimates there are 80,000,000 Americans with diagnoses of substance abuse, dependence or binge drinking patterns, and we treat a tiny, tiny fraction of them effectively. We spend billions on the war on drugs, on research and on treatment and yet have little overall impact on the...

The NYSPA Report: DSM 5 – A New Diagnostic Perspective

With much fanfare and no small amount of controversy the American Psychiatric Association (APA) released the 5th version of the Diagnostic and Statistics manual, DSM-5 in May of this year. Since its release it has been a consistent best seller and is still ranked #19 of all books on Amazon in...

Substance Abuse Among Veterans: Challenges and Hope

Coping with the invisible wounds of war is the new front line for hundreds of thousands of soldiers returning from multiple deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sleepless, on high alert, and waiting in fear for something terrible to happen, countless veterans turn to alcohol or drugs to try and...

SBIRT: Stopping Addiction Before It Starts

The facts are clear: in our country, there is an imminent need for substance abuse prevention and intervention as early in the teen years as possible. A recent study in the Archives of General Psychiatry found that the 15 percent of U.S. high school students who abuse drugs and alcohol began...

Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery in Substance Use and Mental Illness

With the changes brought about by the growth of managed care, evidence-based practice and the advent of the Affordable Care Act, we increasingly recognize that substance use disorder and mental illness are behavioral health issues often found together in the same patient. The field of behavioral...

Intensive Outpatient Programs: When More is Better

The world of substance abuse treatment has gone through a great deal of change in the last decade. In the past, when a person entered substance abuse treatment, there was an immediate assumption that they needed a 28-inpatient rehab in order to “recover”. However, this standard has been changed...

Better Pain Management is Essential for Reducing Addiction to Prescription Painkillers

Limiting use of prescription painkillers has become a major public health goal in the United States in large part because these drugs now cause more overdose deaths than cocaine and heroin combined. (1,2) Much of this effort focuses on persuading physicians to limit the frequency and the amount of...

Addiction 2.0

When we think about addiction, we associate the word with an addiction to substances, such alcohol, tobacco, pills or other drugs. But in recent years, researchers have been studying behavioral addiction, an overwhelming desire to engage in a particular behavior or action. Some of the...

Implementing Best Practices – Seven Core Processes

Implementing best practice care for persons struggling with mental illness and substance use in real world settings can be challenging. At the Institute for Community Living (ICL), where we provide behavioral and physical health care for a widely diverse population and place strong emphasis on...

Hurricane Sandy Kids Need Substance Abuse Services

The catastrophic destruction of property and psyche on Staten Island wrought by Hurricane Sandy last October devastated thousands of our residents. The monster waves and tidal surges that overwhelmed communities on the Island’s East and South Shores destroyed 500 homes, sweeping some completely...