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Results for search "Addiction".

25 Feb

Teen Opioid Use

Teens whose parents misuse opioids are at higher risk of experimenting themselves.

12 Dec

Secondhand Smoke Dangers

Millions of nonsmokers still exposed to secondhand smoke.

25 Jun

Accidental Exposure to Addiction Medication

A treatment for opioid addiction is injuring kids

Health News Results - 169

Overdose Deaths From Fentanyl Soaring: Report

THURSDAY, March 21, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The number of Americans dying from overdoses of the powerful narcotic fentanyl rose 12-fold in recent years, health officials reported Thursday.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that's hundreds of times more potent than heroin or cocaine. But sometimes drug users don't know they're buying it, because fentanyl is often mixed with other opioids...

Many With Opioid Addiction Don't Get Meds That Can Help

WEDNESDAY, March 20, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Most people struggling with opioid addiction lack access to FDA-approved medications that can head off withdrawal symptoms and quell their cravings, a new report finds.

Methadone, buprenorphine and extended-release naltrexone all help opioid addicts by targeting the same brain receptors triggered by narcotics, and they have been proven eff...

Opioid Rxs Decreasing, But Not for All Doctors

WEDNESDAY, March 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors may be pulling out their prescription pads less often for opioid medications, but not everyone's on the same page yet.

New research found that initial prescriptions for the addictive painkillers have dropped by around 50 percent.

"The good news is that we're making progress curtailing prescription opioids, but we have t...

Many Heroin Users Unprepared for Fentanyl OD

TUESDAY, March 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Though they know that nearly all heroin is laced with the dangerous synthetic opioid fentanyl, many Baltimore users aren't prepared to prevent or treat fentanyl-related overdoses, a new study finds.

Baltimore has a thriving heroin trade and 1,000 opioid overdose deaths a year.

The study, by researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg Sc...

Before Teen Is Prescribed Opioids, Look at Family's Drug Use

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Teens and young adults haven't been spared from the opioid addiction crisis sweeping through America.

And new research shows that when a teen is prescribed an opioid painkiller after minor surgery, his or her odds for long-term abuse nearly doubles if someone living at home already has an opioid use problem.

The study of more than...

Insurers Making It Harder to Treat Opioid Addiction: Study

FRIDAY, Feb. 15, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Insurance rules that limit access to the addiction treatment medication buprenorphine may be worsening the U.S. opioid epidemic, a new study suggests.

"Buprenorphine is a safe and effective treatment that decreases deaths due to opioids and stops heroin and other opioid use. People on buprenorphine are able to get their lives back together," s...

Meth Abuse Driving Big Spike in Syphilis Cases

THURSDAY, Feb. 14, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A startling increase in syphilis cases among Americans may be linked to addiction to methamphetamine and other drugs, federal health officials said Thursday.

Between 2013 and 2017, the rate of syphilis infection among heterosexual men and women who use methamphetamine more than doubled, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and P...

Poor Whites Bear the Brunt of U.S. Opioid Crisis, Studies Find

MONDAY, Feb. 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- America's ongoing opioid epidemic has struck poor whites harder than any other group, and a new study argues that racism likely played a role in that.

Whites have better access to prescription medications than either blacks or Hispanics. That privilege may have been their undoing when doctors began to more aggressively treat pain with prescrip...

One Key Step Can Help Cancer Patients Quit Smoking

FRIDAY, Feb. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Cancer patients are already fighting a tough battle, so quitting smoking while doing so is a real challenge.

Now, research from Northwestern University in Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania shows that a combo of counseling and extended use of an anti-smoking medication can boost their odds for success.

One lung cancer patient ...

In West Virginia, Few Opioid OD Survivors Get Good Follow-Up Care: Study

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Ninety percent of people who survived opioid overdoses in West Virginia did not receive recommended treatment to reduce their risk of overdosing again, according to a new study.

West Virginia has the highest opioid overdose death rate in the United States, four times higher than the national average.

This study included 301 people ...

Making OxyContin 'Tamper Proof' Helped Spread Hepatitis C

MONDAY, Feb. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- An effort to make the opioid painkiller OxyContin harder to abuse drove addicted patients to heroin and caused a dramatic increase in hepatitis C, a new study suggests.

In a classic case of unintended consequences, Connecticut-based Purdue Pharma reformulated its powerful and popular drug OxyContin for the right reasons. It became harder to cr...

As Millions of Teens Get Hooked on Vaping, What Works to Help Them Quit?

THURSDAY, Jan. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- E-cigarette use is surging among American teenagers, with millions of kids flirting with nicotine addiction by regularly vaping.

Unfortunately, these kids are going to face a rocky road if they try to kick their nicotine habit, experts say.

There are no tested or approved methods for quitting e-cigarettes, said Linda Richter, direc...

Vaping Beats Nicotine Patch, Gum in Helping Smokers Quit

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For those who want to kick their smoking habit, switching to electronic cigarettes may offer better odds of success than nicotine patches, lozenges or gum, new research suggests.

The finding follows a small year-long study that tracked about 120 British smokers enrolled in a National Health Service smoking cessation program.

"E-ci...

Another Opioid Scourge: Infection-Related Strokes

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As abuse of injected heroin and other addictive opioids spreads throughout the United States, heart experts warn of a growing threat: strokes caused by infections contracted through dirty needles.

"People need to be more aware that stroke can be a devastating complication of injecting opioids," said the lead author of a new study, Dr. Setar...

Opioid Danger to Newborns Varies By Region

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Areas of the United States with high unemployment and few mental health services have higher rates of newborns who were exposed to opioids in the womb, a new study finds.

Researchers analyzed data on 6.3 million births between 2009 and 2015 in 580 counties in Florida, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Carolina, New York, Tennessee and...

Pediatricians Push for  Laws to Prevent Teen Vaping

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Strong limits on marketing and sales are needed to control and prevent teens' use of electronic cigarettes, a new American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy statement says.

Teens who use e-cigarettes are more apt to use traditional cigarettes eventually, studies show.

The surge in vaping among American teens threatens to turn back fiv...

As Opioid Crisis Continues, More Donor Organs Carry Hepatitis C

THURSDAY, Jan. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Add another hardship to the many already triggered by the opioid epidemic: More donated organs infected with the hepatitis C virus.

"The ongoing U.S. opioid crisis has resulted in an increase in drug overdose deaths and acute hepatitis C virus infections, with young persons (who might be eligible organ donors) most affected," explained a tea...

Opioid Prescriptions Almost Twice as Likely for Rural vs. Urban Americans

THURSDAY, Jan. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As the United States battles an epidemic of opioid abuse, people living in rural areas have nearly two times the odds of being prescribed the painkillers when compared to their urban peers.

That's the finding from a new study that suggests more must be done to curb opioid prescribing by doctors in rural America.

The research was ba...

Are Some Opioid Abusers Using Their Pets to Get the Drugs?

TUESDAY, Jan. 15, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- To fight America's opioid epidemic, lawmakers and regulators have clamped down hard on doctors' prescribing practices.

But one avenue for obtaining prescription opioids appears to have been overlooked, according to a new study.

Veterinarians are prescribing large quantities of opioids to pets, raising concern that some people might ...

Fatal Drug ODs Soaring Among Middle-Aged Women: CDC

THURSDAY, Jan. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The rate at which middle-aged American women die from overdoses involving opioids and other drugs nearly quadrupled between 1999 and 2017, new government data shows.

In 1999, about seven out of every 100,000 deaths among U.S. women aged 30 to 64 was caused by a drug overdose, but by 2017 that rate had risen to about 24 women per 100,000 -- a...

More Evidence That Abuse of Xanax, Valium Is on the Rise

THURSDAY, Dec. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- About one in every five people who take Valium, Xanax and other benzodiazepines are misusing the potentially addictive medication, U.S. survey data show.

The statistics also revealed that benzodiazepine use among adults is more than twice as high as previously reported, with nearly 13 percent using the drugs within the past year.

S...

Opioid OD Deaths Soaring Among Native Americans

THURSDAY, Dec. 20, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- As the epidemic of opioid addiction rips through the United States, one group is being hit especially hard: Native Americans.

During the years 2013-2015, the rate of fatal opioid overdoses was nearly three times higher among American Indian and Alaska Natives compared to whites, new research shows.

Rates for overdoses specifically ...

Today's More Potent Pot Means Higher Odds for Dependence: Study

MONDAY, Dec. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Pot's increasing potency could make it more likely that toking will interfere with users' lives, a new study argues.

Compared to pot of the 1990s, today's marijuana contains significantly higher levels of THC, the chemical compound that causes intoxication, the research team notes.

This added punch may be associated with an higher ri...

New Approach to Opioid Crisis: Supervised Heroin Injection Programs?

THURSDAY, Dec. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- It's not standard practice in the United States, but supervised access to medical-grade heroin may reduce the risk of harm for heroin addicts unable to kick the habit, new research suggests.

This approach has been successful in other countries and should be tried and studied in the United States, according to a study by the RAND Corporation, ...

Even Wisdom Tooth Removal May Spur Opioid Addiction

MONDAY, Dec. 3, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Teens and young adults who are prescribed opioid painkillers after having their wisdom teeth removed are at increased risk for addiction, new research suggests.

For the study, researchers looked at nearly 15,000 patients, aged 16 to 25, who were prescribed opioids (such as Vicodin or Lortab) after wisdom tooth extraction in 2015. The median num...

Untangling the Ties Between Troubled Teens and Pot Use

FRIDAY, Nov. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Teens with behavioral problems are more likely than others to use marijuana -- but the drug itself doesn't increase conduct problems, a new study indicates.

The findings suggest that a "cascading chain of events" predict marijuana use problems as teens become young adults, according to the University of Pennsylvania researchers.

"Can...

Smoking Relapse Less Likely Among Vapers: Study

FRIDAY, Nov. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Smokers who switch to vaping can have the occasional cigarette without a complete relapse, new research suggests.

The study included 40 people who quit smoking by using e-cigarettes (vaping). About half said they had either brief or regular tobacco smoking relapses, particularly in social situations.

However, they didn't view such sl...

Nearly 1 in 10 Americans Struggles to Control Sexual Urges

FRIDAY, Nov. 9, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The #MeToo movement has given many Americans a glimpse into an unfamiliar world that may have left many wondering, "What were they thinking?"

It turns out they might not have been thinking much at all. New research suggests that almost 9 percent of people in the United States have distress caused by difficulty controlling their sexual feeli...

Kratom Use in Pregnancy Spurs Withdrawal Symptoms in Newborns

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Although the herbal supplement kratom is still legal and widely available, its opioid-like effects have caused significant withdrawal symptoms in at least two newborns in the United States and that should raise concerns, researchers say.

A case study of a baby boy exposed to kratom during his mother's pregnancy -- only the second American ca...

Over 2 Million Americans Have Hepatitis C; Opioids Help Drive Spread

TUESDAY, Nov. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- More than 2 million Americans have hepatitis C -- and the opioid epidemic is a major contributor to the problem, according to a new government study.

The study, by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, does highlight progress against the potentially fatal liver disease. It also shows how much more work remains, CDC officials sa...

Opioid Use May Sometimes Trigger A-Fib

MONDAY, Nov. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Opioid users may be putting themselves at increased risk for atrial fibrillation ("A-fib"), an abnormal heart rhythm that can lead to a stroke, a new study suggests.

The preliminary finding stems from an analysis of medical records of more than 850,000 military veterans. It found that opioid use increases the likelihood of A-fib by 34 percent.<...

FDA Approves Powerful New Opioid Despite Criticisms

FRIDAY, Nov. 2, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Ruling against the recommendation of one of its chief experts, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved an extremely potent new opioid painkiller, Dsuvia.

The drug is a 30-microgram pill that packs the same punch as 5 milligrams of intravenous morphine, according to the Washington Post. The tiny pill comes packaged in a s...

In Massachusetts, Almost 1 in 20 Adults and Older Kids Abuse Opioids

FRIDAY, Oct. 26, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- In another distressing snapshot of the opioid epidemic gripping America, a new study reports that nearly 5 percent of older children and adults in Massachusetts have an opioid use disorder.

The study found that 4.6 percent of people over the age of 11, or more than 275,000 in the state, abuse opioids. That's nearly four times higher than previ...

Is Pot Addictive? Study Shows Withdrawal Symptoms Can Occur

THURSDAY, Oct. 25, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The wave of marijuana legalization that's swept across the United States in recent years has been fueled in part by the popular belief that pot is essentially harmless.

But a new study shows that some heavy users will experience withdrawal symptoms while coming down from their high.

About 1 in 10 frequent cannabis users reports sym...

Many Young Juul Users May Not Know They're Addicted

FRIDAY, Oct. 19, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Teens who use Juul e-cigarettes appear to be oblivious to the addictive potential, even when they already show signs of being hooked on the nicotine delivered by the devices, a new study shows.

Teens reported using Juuls about twice as often as those smoking conventional cigarettes, according to a survey conducted in 10 California high schools...

Scientists Closer to Drug That Cuts Nicotine Dependence

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers say they've created an enzyme that might one day reduce nicotine cravings in smokers.

The scientists gave the enzyme to nicotine-dependent rats and found it broke down nicotine in the bloodstream before it could reach the brain.

This quickly reduced the rats' nicotine dependence. It also prevented them from relapsing w...

N. Carolina Sees Alarming Spike in Heart Infections Among Opioid Users

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Adding to growing alarm about America's opioid crisis, cases of a potentially deadly heart infection have jumped 10-fold among North Carolina's injection drug users, new research shows.

The infection is endocarditis, which strikes one or more of the heart's four valves. Usually a byproduct of aging, it can also develop when bacteria is intr...

Despite Opioid Crisis, Most Patients Want the Drugs for Post-Op Pain

MONDAY, Oct. 15, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Despite a flood of news reports on the opioid crisis, many people still want the potentially addictive painkillers after surgery, a new survey suggests.

The survey, of more than 500 patients scheduled for surgery, found that more than three-quarters expected to get opioids afterward. Most also thought opioids were the most effective treatment ...

Many Young Drug Abusers Not Tested for Hepatitis C, Study Finds

FRIDAY, Oct. 5, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Too few teens and young adults with an opioid addiction are tested for hepatitis C, even though they're at high risk for the liver infection, researchers say.

In 2016, hepatitis C killed more than 18,000 Americans, making it the most common cause of death from a reportable infectious disease, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control an...

Don't Blame Obamacare for the Opioid Crisis: Study

THURSDAY, Oct. 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A look at past expansions to Medicaid appears to challenge claims that expansion under Obamacare helped fuel the current opioid crisis in the United States.

University of Pennsylvania researchers report that Medicaid expansions actually had the opposite effect, and led to reductions in drug overdose deaths.

"These findings suggest t...

A Couple's Tough Trek Back From Opioid Addiction

THURSDAY, Oct. 4, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- In 2016, almost 174 Americans died each day due to drug overdoses -- and roughly two-thirds of those deaths were caused by opioid drugs. The statistics are startling and make the problem seem hopeless.

But is it?

Beating drug addiction -- whether it's opioids (such as OxyContin), methamphetamine or something else -- is definitely a...

Genes May Control How Tough It Is to Stop Drinking

TUESDAY, Sept. 25, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- When they give up booze, some alcoholics have more severe withdrawal symptoms than others. This discrepancy may come down to genetics, researchers say.

The Yale University team hopes its findings ultimately lead to treatments that ease the discomfort of "detox."

Heavy drinkers can develop shakes, nausea, headaches, anxiety and chan...

Reports Warn of Growing Opioid Crisis Among Seniors

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 19, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Against the backdrop of an unrelenting opioid crisis, two new government reports warn that America's seniors are succumbing to the pitfalls of prescription painkillers.

Issued by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the reports reveal that millions of older Americans are now filling prescriptions for many different opioid...

Drug Users Trying to Stay Ahead of Deadly Fentanyl

MONDAY, Sept. 17, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- As deadly fentanyl is increasingly mixed into heroin and other street drugs, some drug abusers are getting smart, a new study finds.

Fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid, has triggered a sharp increase in overdose deaths over the past few years. The drug is to blame for 44 percent of overdose deaths in New York City alone, according to New Y...

'No Documented Reason' for 1 in 3 Outpatient Opioid Rxs: Study

MONDAY, Sept. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The United States is in the grip of an epidemic of opioid painkiller addiction. But now, research shows that in nearly a third of cases there's no medical reason documented for opioids prescribed in an outpatient setting.

The findings show the need for stricter rules on recording patients' needs for the highly addictive drugs, the research te...

1 in 4 Seniors Who Take Xanax, Valium Use Them Long Term

MONDAY, Sept. 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- When older people use drugs like Valium or Xanax to calm anxiety or help them sleep, they run a high risk of becoming drug-dependent, new research suggests.

In the study of almost 600 adults averaging 78 years of age, about one in four who were prescribed these types of benzodiazepine sedatives ended up using them for at least a year.

...

Naloxone Nasal Spray Works Best to Stop Opioid OD: Study

FRIDAY, Sept. 7, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A one-step nasal spray is the easiest form of naloxone to give someone suffering an opioid overdose, researchers say.

Increased public availability of naloxone, also known by the brand name Narcan, is considered a key way to reduce opioid overdose deaths. But there's more than one way to administer it, and it wasn't clear which method would be...

States Struggle With Onslaught of Opioid OD Deaths

THURSDAY, Aug. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- A new report on thousands of opioid overdose deaths across 11 states finds the problem is increasingly complex, but more can be done to stop it.

The report, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, looked at nearly 12,000 fatal opioid overdoses occurring between July 2016 and June 2017 in states across the Northeast, the Mid...

Monkey Trials Raise Hope for Non-Addictive Opioid Alternative

THURSDAY, Aug. 30, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The ongoing opioid addiction crisis means the search for powerful but non-addictive painkillers is more urgent than ever before. Now, a team of scientists says it may be nearing that goal.

Research in monkeys suggests that an experimental painkiller -- called AT-121 -- is not only very effective in easing pain, but it may also blunt the addi...

Government Rules Aimed at Curbing Opioid Prescriptions May Have Backfired

THURSDAY, Aug. 23, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- As the U.S. opioid addiction epidemic widened, the federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) placed the prescription painkillers in a tougher-to-refill category.

Many states also mandated monitoring programs to spot overprescribing by doctors.

But two new studies suggest these steps, while well-intentioned, may have led to more opioids...

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Wellness Library Results - 22

Smokers with digestive trouble often blame their diet, stress, bad luck -- anything but their cigarettes. After all, the stomach is a long way from the lungs. Or so it seems. You won't read it on the Surgeon General's warning, but the fact remains: Smoking is hazardous to your entire digestive system. If you're a smoker, think of that pain in your stomach or burning in your chest as a wake-up cal...

Okay, so the nicotine patches and gum didn't work. Somebody suggests hypnosis, but having someone experiment with your brain doesn't sound appealing right now. Maybe it's time to try a little group support. That's what Susan Gosden, did. Desperate to stop smoking, she found inspiration -- and release -- in a smoking cessation group held by Kaiser Permanente. Nine months after attending the 10-week...

They say that cigarettes can be harder to kick than heroin. From what we hear that's true and then some. Because it's so difficult but so essential, we asked people we know to describe how they quit and what it felt like. Although quitting was a triumph for everyone, some still see themselves smoking in their dreams. One writer is hoping there's a smoking section in heaven where he can light up wi...

What's the difference between chewing and spit (or snuff) tobacco? Chewing tobacco ("chaw") is usually sold as leaf tobacco, and users place a large wad of it inside their cheek. Users, who tend to be older men, keep chewing tobacco in their mouths for several hours (the tell-tale bulge often gives them away). Snuff, which is much more common today, is a powdered tobacco that's usually sold in ca...

Linking cigarettes and cancer In the early 1960s, researchers at Brown and Williamson, one of the world's largest tobacco companies, made a sickening discovery: Smoking could cause lung cancer. In public, the company claimed cigarettes were perfectly safe. Behind closed doors, their scientists searched for ways to remove cancer-causing compounds from cigarettes. As their own internal documents sho...

You probably know that drinking during pregnancy can cause birth defects in your unborn child. But do you know what smoking during pregnancy can do? To test yourself, choose which of the following are true if you smoke while you're pregnant: 1) You're more likely to give birth to a "preemie," a premature baby, who runs a greater risk of birth complications and serious illness. 2) You're more likel...

Why should I quit smoking? Because it could save your life. They don't call cigarettes "cancer sticks" and "coffin nails" for nothing. When you smoke, you're exposing yourself to more than 4,800 chemicals, including cyanide, benzene, and ammonia -- and at least 69 of those chemicals can cause cancer. Perhaps the best known is nicotine, an addictive compound that can make it ferociously hard to st...

As any cigar lover will tell you, cigars and cigarettes are in two different leagues. Cigarettes come with a warning label; cigars come with a fancy box. A cigarette might last five minutes; a good cigar can last an hour or more. While cigarette smoking has steadily declined over the years; cigar smoking has become more popular, increasing by more than 33 percent between 1996 and 2006. And, of cou...

Albert Einstein once remarked that pipe smoking "contributed to a somewhat calm and objective judgment in all human affairs." Whether the observation is true or not, pipe smoking has had many other famous devotees, among them Franklin D. Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the fictional Sherlock Homes, who often disappeared into a haze of pipe smoke while solving his cases. Today, pipes are still a symbol...

Most cigarette smokers know the dangers of tobacco. After all, the Surgeon General stamps a warning right on the pack. But what about the people sitting next to the smoker? What about his friends and coworkers? His children? Secondhand smoke doesn't come with a warning label. If it did, more smokers might try harder to kick their addiction. According to the best current estimates, secondhand smoke...

Like many heavy smokers, Steven "Bubba" Ash would love to quit. "It's messing up my whole life," he says. In addition to draining his finances, his pack-a-day habit is killing his stamina. He used to be a serious runner, but he just doesn't have the lungs anymore. Bubba is 15. The high school freshman from Plains, Montana, first started smoking when he was 10. "Both of my parents were heavy smoker...

Ray Lader used to be an ideal customer for the tobacco companies: He was 12-years-old, loyal to his brand, and addicted. But within a few years, he turned into a major thorn in their side. Like thousands of other youth in Florida, Lader became an activist in the Truth Campaign, an unprecedented, highly successful program to curb teen smoking. Lader has the perfect credentials for an anti-smoking ...

Few methamphetamine users fit the stereotype of the gaunt, twitchy addict. Some users take the drug in plush offices or lavish houses. Some wear suits or even the white coats of the medical profession. But whether a user looks like a CEO, a vagrant, or a soccer mom, there's a chance that the addiction is on display when he or she smiles. As methamphetamine use became rampant over the past decade ...

What are 12-step programs Since 1935 -- the year that Alcoholics Anonymous was founded -- millions of people have turned to 12-step programs to help them overcome often life-threatening addictions or self-destructive behaviors. The 12-step approach combines group support with specific activities or steps that are intended to move a person closer to recovery. The concept has expanded greatly since...

What is alcohol abuse? Many people enjoy drinking alcohol in social settings or to relax. But sometimes people may find they're drinking too much. And when heavy drinking leads to health, work, or relationship problems, it's a form of alcohol abuse. Experts say that alcohol abuse is marked by one or more of the following problems: continuing to drink despite alcohol-related problems; indulging in ...

Casual drinking is a common ritual in our culture -- from campus keg parties, to a "beer and a dog" at the ballgame, to a nice bottle of wine on the dinner table. In countless advertisements, fun-loving youth frolic on the beach with beer cans in hand: To drink is to be happy, the tantalizing ads promise. But while it's hard to deny the pleasures of a gin and tonic on a lazy summer evening, for mi...

You've heard the adage that "drinking and driving don't mix." But if you've ever been in a bar around closing time, you know that a lot of people haven't gotten the message. A report from researchers at Boston University estimates that Americans take about 820 million drives each year after drinking. Almost 20 percent -- 159 million -- of those drivers are legally drunk when they take the wheel. ...

If you're over 60, you may use alcohol in much the way you did when you were younger. You may have a glass of wine at a meal, a beer or two at a ball game, or a gin and tonic at a party with friends. And if your doctor says it's fine for you to drink, there's probably nothing wrong with it. But if you've found yourself feeling tense and irritable when you're not drinking, you may have a problem....

In the 2005 mock documentary "I Am a Sex Addict," the protagonist sits dolefully in an anonymous 12-step meeting for people "addicted" to sex. He's ended up there after being unable to control a compulsion to seek out prostitutes when his intimate relationships faltered. "The more I indulged the addiction, the stronger it became," he says, confessing to the group that his sexual compulsions destr...

When does gambling become a problem? Gambling can be a fun diversion for adults of any age. Many people enjoy going to the horse races, picking teams in an office pool, or dreaming of lottery winnings. For seniors, especially, a bingo parlor or casino can be a great opportunity for socializing and a nice break from routine life. The great majority of people, young and old, gamble responsibly, but...

Is substance abuse a problem among seniors? While the nation wages war on marijuana, cocaine, and other street drugs, roughly one out of five seniors struggles with a different kind of substance abuse. The drugs that have them in their grip -- prescription medications and alcohol -- are perfectly legal, but that doesn't make the addictions any less devastating to older people and their families. ...

The hazards of smoking go far beyond lung cancer and heart disease. In fact, it would take microscopic print to list every potential warning on cigarette packages. Take this short quiz to see how much you know about the dangers of smoking. 1. Smoking raises the risk of many types of cancer. Which of these cancers has been linked to smoking? a. Cervical cancer b. Bladder cancer c. Pancreatic can...

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