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The Life Works Community Blog

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men and women drug abuseTwo reports released in early July revealed that whilst young people seem to be turning their backs on drugs, men are still a staggering three times more likely to be frequent drug users than women are.

Although young women are now drinking almost as much as men, the gap between genders when it comes to drug use has remained consistent for the last decade. This is no doubt linked to the fact that men are less likely to consider the risks of drug taking. A previous government survey found that 27 percent of men think its safe to smoke cannabis compared to just 15 percent of females.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

alcohol tax and treatmentThe Centre for Social Justice has recommended a new tax on alcohol. This new tax would increase prices by 2p per unit with the extra money being used to provide abstinence based treatment for alcohol and drug abuse.

Tagged in: Alcohol Addiction

cannabis and the brainThe ongoing debate about the benefits versus the side effects of marijuana continues as new research has just revealed that even casual use of the drug is enough to cause significant brain abnormalities.

The study, which was conducted by psychiatrist and mathematician, Hans Breiter, involved a sample of patients between the ages of 18 and 25 - half of which were cannabis users and half of which were non-users. The habits of the group who smoked marijuana varied from a couple times a week to everyday use and what was found was that the more often the drug was smoked, the greater the brains differed from those who never used it.

Tagged in: cannabis addiction

drug addiction harm reductionUK health bodies have decided to start providing free foil to heroin users to help prevent disease spread by injecting the drug.

The foil has previously been illegal for treatment centres to supply but can now be made available at both public and private facilities.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

Robin Williams DepressionOn Tuesday morning the world woke up to the tragic news that the iconic actor Robin Williams had sadly passed away. What made the story so difficult to digest was the fact that Williams death was the result of suicide.

A man adored by millions who had enjoyed a lifetime full of triumphs and successes, a talent that few could match and a family who adored him. How could someone who seemed to have it all want to put an end to a life that so many envied?

Tagged in: Depression

Alcohol Labeling The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Misuse is recommending that all alcoholic drinks sold in the UK come with a warning label. Much like the labels on cigarettes and food warning of fat salt and nicotine, the new alcohol labels would outline the risks associated with drinking.

The parliamentary group has made 10 recommendations to help alleviate alcohol related harm in the UK and alcohol labelling is only one piece of that. The group also wants to cut the legal drink drive limit.

Tagged in: Alcohol Addiction

Drug DecriminalizationIn a statement from the Liberal Democrats, the party has announced that they would like to effectively decriminalise drugs for personal use. Instead, they believe that drug use is a health issue which needs treatment not incarceration.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

drugs and pregnancyAccording to figures that have been released by the NHS, a staggering four babies are born with a drug addiction every single day in the UK.

It may seem unbelievable that a newborn baby could be addicted to heavy drugs such as heroin and crack cocaine, but frequently exhibiting neonatal withdrawal symptoms within just a few hours of being born means that doctors are being forced to recommend opiates in order to wean them off the drugs.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

treatment for alcohol addictionA pill that is taken once a day in order to help beat alcohol addiction has won the backing of health officials in England. The treatment, called nalmefene works by reducing the buzz that addicts get from drinking, thus helping to reduce the need and craving for a drink.

The pill has already been used across Scotland and it is thought that its introduction to the rest of the country could help a further 600,000 alcoholics throughout England. Trials across Scotland revealed that men who usually drank eight units a day and women who drank six a day cut these amounts by 50% while taking the drug over a six month period.

Tagged in: Alcohol Addiction

Posted by on in Drug Addiction

drugs and drivingA new study found that nearly one million drivers in Britain have driven while high in the past year. In a survey of 1,000 drivers from the Brake charity and Direct Line, 3% of people admitted to using some form of illicit drugs while driving.

When that is scaled up to all of Britain it means around 900,000 drivers were high on the roads last year.

The survey also found one in 10 people had been inside a vehicle driven by someone under the influence of drugs. A further 29% said they would hesitate to intervene if a friend planned on taking drugs and driving.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

Posted by on in Depression

Depression treatmentA new treatment for clinical depression or bipolar disorder is using low-field magnetic simulation (LFMS) to relieve depression symptoms fast. The new treatment shows immediate and substantial mood improvement in testing with no side effects according to research.

Tagged in: Depression

alcohol monitorPeople who commit alcohol related crimes may soon be forced to wear an ankle monitor to ensure they are not drinking. The new scheme is being implemented in 4 London Boroughs, Croydon, Lambeth, Southwark and Sutton.

Courts in these boroughs will be able to ban people from drinking and use the ankle monitor to enforce that ban. It is expected that around 150 people will be made to wear the ankle monitor for four months as part of the punishment for their alcohol related criminal activity.

Tagged in: Alcohol Addiction

new heroin lawsStarting in the 1980s, US states like Wisconsin began criminalising drug delivery. These new laws have been gaining traction recently in many states because they allow prosecutors to punish drug dealers for overdose deaths.

Dealers who sell heroin that kills a user can be charged with a drug related homicide and could face up to 25 years in prison in Wisconsin. Other states like Washington, Pennsylvania and Minnesota have also enacted similar laws to in an attempt to target dealers and stop drugs before they reach vulnerable users.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

teens drugs alcohol smokingA recent study backed by the UK government shows that drinking and drug taking amongst 11-15 year olds has dropped substantially. In the past ten years, the number of children taking drugs or drinking has nearly halved.

The number of school children who have tried cannabis or other illegal drugs has dropped from 30% in 2003 to 16% in 2013. The number of school aged children who had consumed alcohol fell similarly. In 2003 25% of pupils had been drinking in the past week. By 2013, the number fell to just 9%.

heroin addictionResearch from the Home Office has found that the reduction in heroin and crack cocaine users is a key factor in fighting crime in the UK. This new information cites the boom of heroin addiction in the 80s and 90s as a major cause of the peak in crime in 1995.

Tagged in: heroin addiction

teen binge drinkingA Finnish study has found that teens who abuse alcohol are more likely to struggle in early adulthood. The study looked at over 3,000 twins. In each case, one twin drank to excess while the other did not.

Tagged in: alcohol abuse

alcohol and energy drinksA new study shows that consuming energy drinks with alcohol increase a person’s urge to drink. The study found that people who consumed a cocktails with energy drinks had a greater desire to keep drinking alcohol than someone drinking a cocktail without the added energy drink.

Tagged in: Alcohol Addiction

Posted by on in Depression

depression helpDepression is a debilitating illness that can affect anyone. For those suffering with depression, it may be difficult to focus at work, interact with friends or even get out of bed. This can be made worse when people around someone with depression do not understand the problem.

Tagged in: Depression

Posted by on in Drug Addiction

drug addiction treatment An award-winning Cambridge Neuroscientist is working to treat drug addiction by erasing memories. Barry Everitt is a Cambridge University Professor who is trying to develop new ways to block brain chemicals that illicit emotional memories.

This new research will not be a cure for drug addiction, nor will it damage conscious remembering.  An addict will still be able to remember taking drugs but the emotional feeling of need, also known as the compulsion will be gone.

Tagged in: Drug Addiction

alcohol and the heartSeveral years ago a widely reported study found that light to moderate alcohol consumption might actually provide some health benefits. These findings are now being called into question as a huge cooperative study has found even light drinking harms health.

The new study was conducted by 155 researchers from the UK, Europe, North America and Australia. It analysed data from 56 different studies and used information from more than 260,000 people.

Tagged in: Alcohol Addiction