Exploring Alcohol and Alcoholism

For many, beer, wine, and spirits conjure up thoughts of social gatherings and tipsy fun. But alcohol, a depressant, is also associated with damaging behavior and the emotional pain and physical ruin of addiction. Experts debate the benefits and risks of drinking and passionately argue over whether moderation or abstinence is the best option for alcoholics.

Recent posts on Alcoholism

6 At-Home Options When Your Drinking Is Becoming Too Much

Low-level intervention is a useful starting point for people who drink too much.

Unite and Celebrate Recovery

By Fran Simone Ph.D. on January 13, 2018 in A Family Affair
Is your loved one causing you to sink into helplessness? You can find solace and support with others in the same boat.

Family Relationships in Early Stages of Substance Use Change

By Michael Ascher M.D. on January 11, 2018 in Unhooked
Whether you are the person with the substance use problem in early stages of change or someone who loves them, everyone needs a road map to navigate existing family relationships.

Alcohol and Sleep: What You Need to Know

By Michael J Breus Ph.D. on January 11, 2018 in Sleep Newzzz
Even moderate amounts of alcohol in your system at bedtime alters sleep architecture—the natural flow of sleep through different stages.

Infographic: Teen Substance Use and Media

By Michele Ybarra MPH, Ph.D. on January 10, 2018 in Connected
These statistics make clear that we must encourage the teens in our lives to think critically about how media uses different strategies to try to influence their behavior.

"Could It Happen to Me?" Our Personal Risk Factors

"There are personal risk factors that dramatically increase the chances of developing an addiction." Excerpted from The Craving Brain

Acupuncture in Mental Health Care

There is emerging but still inconclusive evidence for acupuncture as a treatment of depressed mood, anxiety, PTSD, and other mental health problems.
"Yin and Yang" by Klem - This vector image was created with Inkscape by Klem, and then manually edited by Mnmazur.. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons -

Is Coffee Really Bad for Sleep?

By John Cline Ph.D. on December 30, 2017 in Sleepless in America
Coffee is a wonderful drink that has been used in the west for hundreds of years to brighten the mind and mood. But it can make sleep difficult unless used with good sleep hygiene.

Taking Drugs on Christmas: A Reverse Temperance Tale

By Stanton Peele Ph.D. on December 24, 2017 in Addiction in Society
Drugs can be consumed in positive ways in positive surroundings with positive people.

How to Know You're in a Good Therapy for Addiction

By Lance Dodes M.D. on December 21, 2017 in The Heart of Addiction
Finding the right therapy for addiction is critical. Here are some things to watch out for.

Rats, Crowds, and Brain Loss

By Ilana Simons Ph.D. on December 21, 2017 in The Literary Mind
a video about crowds, rats, and brain damage

Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation: An Emerging Therapy

Curious about the benefits of weak electrical current for your mental health? Many studies support its use for anxiety and substance abuse.
Carl Pickhardt Ph. D.

Adolescent Substance Use and the Problem of Denial

Like it or not, adolescents today grow up in an increasingly drug-filled world. Parental denial of this reality provides no protection. They must be knowledgable and stay vigilant.

Sick and Tired

Every addict must reach his own turning point to escape the web of addiction.

Johns Hopkins Brain Maps Show Why It Can Be So Hard to Stop

By Christopher Bergland on December 07, 2017 in The Athlete's Way
Neuroscientists at Johns Hopkins University have identified why it's so hard to "Stop!" once your brain has given your body the green light to "go."

Strategies for Non-Drinkers to Navigate Holiday Parties

Many people don’t drink alcohol but will be quizzed about why they don’t at holiday gatherings.

Creativity and Alcoholism

A number of prominent American writers have suffered from alcoholism in the past, but they seldom did their best writing while directly under the influence of alcohol.

Negative Self-Talk: Don't Let It Overwhelm You

By Fran Simone Ph.D. on December 04, 2017 in A Family Affair
Is negative self-talk wearing you down? You have the power to change it.
By Piyush Ikhar (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

7 Common Reasons Why People Use Drugs

By Shahram Heshmat Ph.D. on November 28, 2017 in Science of Choice
Vulnerability to addiction can be explained by considering multilevel factors from the molecular to the societal.

You Can’t Go Home Again

By Kirby Farrell Ph.D. on November 20, 2017 in A Swim in Denial
“Home for the holidays” promises “all the comforts of home,” but also brings the sorrows of home. Why do we do it? Is it a homing instinct? An addiction? Just unfinished business?

Shame as a Barrier to Addiction Treatment

The largest barrier to alcoholics getting treatment is shame. This is ironic because getting help and getting sober should be an action that alcoholics feel proud of.

Casablanca at 75

By Dean Olsher LCAT, MT-BC, MS on November 03, 2017 in A Sound Mind
The film has important lessons for our time––about love, betrayal, the fight against fascism, and the necessity of music.

Humans and Wine: A Seven Thousand Year Love Affair

By Nathan H. Lents, Ph.D. on November 01, 2017 in Beastly Behavior
There's more to wine than bouquets and finishes. Wine may be the badge of civilization and it is an excellent summary of science.

Beware the Masks of Addiction

If we sacrifice our truth for the sake of the mask’s persona, then the illusion of the mask begins to drive our perception, choices, and relationships.

Is There an Epidemic of Despair in the Rural Heartland?

By Rob Whitley, Ph.D. on October 26, 2017 in Talking About Men
New research shows a sharp increase in premature death rates among rural less educated whites; mainly due to suicide, overdose, and substance abuse. What are the underlying causes?

6 Things an Addict Will Never Tell You

By Amy Dresner on October 25, 2017 in Coming Clean
Want to know what active addicts aren't telling you? Here are 6 things they're probably lying about.

How to Solve the Problem of Campus Rape

Telling college women to stop drinking won’t help.

7 Ways Creativity Supports Addiction Recovery

Creativity can play an important role in recovery.

Gambling Sports Advertising

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on October 19, 2017 in In Excess
Sports gambling advertising is now commonplace, but there is little research on it. Two studies examine junk food, gender and alcohol in gambling ads.

When Someone You Love Becomes an Addict

With addiction, love isn't enough. Here's how to get help.