The disease of addiction. Disabling?

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I spotted a tweet earlier today vigorously opposing the notion of addiction as a disease. A week or two back, someone I follow on Twitter was advocating for the terms “addict” and “alcoholic” to be abandoned because they are stigmatising. I thought of the tens of thousands of recovering people meeting weekly in Britain’s six […]

Recovery in Scotland: work at it!

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Thinking about recovery in Scotland? Thinking about abstinence? Don’t you just wish you had some good quality materials? Materials that would help people move from the treacle of addiction into the blancmange of recovery? Materials, for instance, that would be useful in a variety of community and residential settings? Materials, let’s say, that had been […]

Stigma: Overdosing on heroin doesn’t make you a scumbag

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On the day we heard that heroin was implicated in the tragic death of Peaches Geldof, I was reminded of another recent story. Thomas McLellan, a prominent US addiction researcher and policy advisor, lost his son to an overdose in 2008. A month or two back he wrote a piece  in the Huffington Post. He recounts that […]

The ten most important things known about addiction. Part 2

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The conclusion of this two-parter. Part one here. Professor Selman’s last five essentials: 6. Different therapies appear to produce similar treatment outcomes. Project MATCH, a huge psychotherapy trial showed similar outcomes for the techniques of motivational enhancement therapy, twelve step facilitation and cognitive behavioural therapy. Other trials including British ones have shown the same results. The […]

The ten most important things known about addiction. Part 1

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Doug Sellman is a professor of psychiatry and addiction medicine in New Zealand. In 2010 in the journal Addiction, a world leader, he attempted the difficult task of distilling the ten things you need to know about addiction from the research of the last thirty years. No mean feat. Well, what are they? Ten things are way […]

Tramadol Abuse

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Drug treatment used to seem so simple. Clients had a drug of choice, lets say alcohol, heroin or cocaine, and they came to treatment for help for that drug. Now they have a drug of choice AND whatever medication they are being prescribed. Treatment is suddenly so much more complicated. Those drugs are things like pregabalin, […]