Understanding the Enabling of Addictive Behavior

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) defines addiction as “a treatable, chronic medical disease,” explaining that “people with addiction use substances or engage in behaviors that become compulsive and often continue despite harmful consequences.”   Many addiction professionals regard the loss of control over substance use as an important aspect of the disease. While many people…

Why COVID-19 is Taking a Heavy Toll on the Mental Health of People in States With Large Rural Areas

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has caused a lot of anguish for many Americans. Lockdowns and social distancing can make people feel isolated and lonely, increasing stress and anxiety. More than 460,000 Americans have now died from the disease. As we reported previously on this blog, the number of people reporting symptoms of anxiety and depression…

How to Tell the Difference Between ADHD and Anxiety Disorders

It’s not always easy to distinguish between attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety disorders. They often co-exist and can exacerbate each other. Symptoms such as trouble concentrating, feeling overwhelmed, irritability, and restlessness may overlap. One of the tricky things about the different conditions is that stimulants used to treat ADHD can exacerbate anxiety. D’Agati, Curatolo,…

PTSD and the Pandemic

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) should be redefined in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic,  says Varun Choudhary, M.D., in a recent post for Addiction Professional. “One of the biggest concerns keeping behavioral health specialists up at night is the emotional weight of the coronavirus outbreak.”  The number of Americans reporting symptoms of anxiety has tripled…

New LGBTQ+ Suicide Prevention Plan for Utah

Data from the 2015 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance shows that nationally, LGB youth seriously contemplate suicide at almost three times the rate of heterosexual youth. A new prevention plan by the Utah Suicide Prevention Coalition says, “Utah consistently ranks in the top ten in the United States for suicide deaths. LGBTQ+ adults and youth experience…

The Dangers of Unprocessed Trauma and Compassion Fatigue in First Responders

“Society has long recognized the physical demands of first responders; however, what is less formally acknowledged are the negative psychological outcomes,” wrote Bowers, Beidel, and Marks in Mental Health Intervention and Treatment of First Responders and Emergency Workers (2019). “Most notable among these negative mental health consequences is posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The hallmark of…