Do Moderation Programs Encourage Alcoholic Drinking?

The fear that abstinent people in recovery will begin drinking if moderation programs are offered is simply absurd. For the one percent of substance users who both seek treatment and are successful, recovery is usually a pretty happy place. Let's let them keep their victories while offering the other 99 percent solutions they will embrace.

A New Sobriety

Drinking can contribute to improved health but overdoing it is dangerous. What does that mean and what can we do about it? A hint - the answer is not abstinence.

Finally, the Addiction Cure Is Here, Right?

The promise of an addiction cure is alluring, but the evidence keep suggesting that for those who meet chronic addiction criteria, the cure is going to be a combination of approaches.

Is Leaving Residential Treatment the Most Effective Part?

Residential treatment for substance use has been suffering with low success rates. We've been blaming the clients, but what if the treatment itself is more jail than therapy? Depression and failure could be the outcome.

Shame on Us for Shaming Hoffman

The shame addicts experience when they relapse is a sad reminder that we haven't quite figured out how to help those suffering with substance use issues.

The Promise of Help... Again

Obamacare promises changes in the accessibility of addiction treatment. I'm pretty sure massage and wolf-therapy won't be covered but I'm not holding my breath for much...

Doctor, Doctor!

I worked my butt off for the title "Doctor" and somehow it doesn't seem to measure up. I guess I can either get over it or go back to school (right!) but what does this say about the way we provide treatment?

Moderation in Addiction Treatment, A Change Is Gonna Come

"Denial" in the context of addiction treatment might mean that those who want help are simply not willing to except the only option offered to them. Maybe it's time that we listened instead of blaming them for our failures. Our many failures.

Opiate Addiction in the Limelight: Lil Wayne

Lil Wayne was hospitalized last week and rumors are it has to do with his drug use. Well, we know hip-hop and drugs mix well, but what the heck is Syzzurp?! Your answer coming up once you press the button... Look left and cough!

Alternatives: Moderate Drinking Treatment Hits Los Angeles

Nearly all addiction treatment in the U.S. is abstinence-based even though abstinence is the least likely outcome for people suffering with substance-related problems. Is it any wonder that 90% of people who experience problems don't even seek treatment and that those who do perform so poorly? It's time we treated the actual problem in front of us.

Quitting Is Not Really About Quitting

Addiction treatment often focuses much of its attention on quitting the specific problem behavior. Unfortunately, health intervention research has shown us that getting someone to stop doing anything is damn near impossible. But there is a better way.

Stigmatized to Stop Drinking...Again

Psychologists are supposed to help others who are stigmatized feel better about themselves and function more effectively. Oddly, they might be doing a pretty bad job when it comes to their own ranks, especially when there have been past indiscretions.

Personalized medicine requires more than genes

Personalized medicine (pharmacogenomics) is likely the future of all medication prescription and it is going to make a big difference in addiction treatment as well. But when the argument of nature versus nurture comes up, it's important to keep in mind just how complex the interaction between the two really is.

Why Quitting Smoking Without Help Is So Hard

Quitting smoking is hard, and although most people quit alone, many need help. Focusing on motivation and other personality factors might be key.

The Genetics of Quitting Smoking

The argument of whether biology has something to do with addiction is silly—the interaction between nicotine metabolism, bupropion, and quitting smoking can show you why.

Death In Rehab: What's Wrong With Addiction Treatment

We've been hearing for a while that addiction treatment may not be extremely effective, but could it actually be killing addicts who are looking for help?

Top 10 Great Things About Being Addicted

Addiction can't be all bad or no one would do it, right? Here are our top 10 great things about being addicted.

Marijuana, Memory, and the Brain's Cleaning Crew

THC use (as in smoking marijuana) has been shown to negatively affect memory. Who thought is was the brain's De facto janitors that were responsible for the effect?

Is Opiate Pain Medication Safe for Addicts? Part II

When considering opiate pain medication among addicts, one of the important questions is: Do they work?

How to Give Up Giving Up

Giving up can seem like the easiest choice sometime. But if you learn from those who experience happiness and success, failure doesn't really exist.

Is Opiate Pain Medication Safe for Addicts? Part I

You often hear people in "recovery" talk about freedom from all mind-altering substances. But what happens when chronic pain requires treatment using medication that can be both mind altering and addictive?

Treating Alcohol Withdrawal With Benzodiazepines—Safe if Mindful

Is alcohol withdrawal safe? Benzodiazepines have been shown to help but require users to be mindful. The entire process should take place under the supervision of a physician.

The Best Addiction Treatment Option

Which addiction treatment option is best? To me that's a bit like asking whether the sky is better than the ocean or the mountains.

Felony for Drug Possession?! That's a Crime!

Should drug possession be considered a felony or misdemeanor? California Senator Mark Leno is making his opinion known with SB1506 and I'm in full support of finally making this change.

Can't Get In: Barriers to Addiction Treatment Entry

What keeps people who need it out of addiction treatment? Barriers inside and out, that's what! But there's quite a bit we can do about it, and several occurrences where we don't need to.

Addiction Research — Who Are We Studying?

When reading about addiction research, it's important to consider the subjects we're studying in the first place. Our participants may not be who you'd expected.

Before We Jump to Whitney Houston Conclusions

Long distance diagnosis is dangerous and inappropriate. When there's no information, it's also unprofessional, irresponsible, and stupid. So for now, let's leave conclusions about Whitney Houston's death to ourselves.

Negative Self-Talk and Addiction Recovery

Negative self talk finds its way into many people's heads and is very common in early recovery. So what is one to do?

Rubber-Band Addiction Recovery: No Shame

Recovery with no shame usually involves understanding. That's why I've put together my Rubber-band recovery framework, which explain all the ups and downs.

Stress About Alcohol? Heavy Drinking Versus Alcoholism

Heavy alcohol users are not necessarily addicts or alcoholics, and their stress response shows it.