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Moderate Drinking May Not Lengthen Life, Study Suggests

Posted 22 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 22, 2016 – Despite previous studies suggesting a bevy of health benefits, a new analysis challenges the idea that drinking alcohol in moderation might prolong your life. After reviewing nearly 90 previously completed studies, researchers said that moderate drinkers may not have a survival benefit compared to people who don't drink at all. "So-called 'moderate' drinkers do not live longer than nondrinkers," said review co-author Tanya Chikritzhs. She is a professor and director of the Alcohol Policy Research team at Australia's National Drug Research Institute. Not everyone agrees with that conclusion, but some health experts do. "Scientific data continue to support the premise that small to moderate amounts of alcohol on a regular basis are consistent with a healthy lifestyle for middle-aged and older adults," said Dr. R. Curtis Ellison, professor of medicine and public ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Breathalyzer-Locked Car Ignitions Are Saving Lives, Study Says

Posted 18 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 17, 2016 – Ignition devices that prevent driving after drinking significantly reduce alcohol-related crash deaths, a new study finds. Essentially in-car breathalyzers, the "ignition interlocks" led to a 15 percent decline in alcohol-related deaths in 18 states that required them for anyone convicted of drunken driving, the researchers found. The estimated 915 lives saved from 2007 to 2013 is comparable to the lives saved by mandatory airbag laws and the 21-year-old drinking age, the study authors noted. "The number of times that I have had to talk to a family and tell them that they lost their son or brother or daughter or sister to something so preventable as a drunk driving crash, it's hard to count even in my short time of practice – that's my motivation," said study author Dr. Elinore Kaufman, a student in the health policy program at the University of Pennsylvania ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcoholic Psychosis

One Alcoholic Drink Might Temporarily Bump Up Heart Risk

Posted 3 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 2, 2016 – In as little as an hour after sipping a glass of wine or enjoying a cocktail, your risk of heart trouble and stroke may go up, new research suggests. The good news is that within 24 hours, that same alcoholic beverage may protect against heart problems and stroke, the Harvard University researchers said. But, heavy drinkers don't seem to get those protective effects. "Heavy drinking increases risk both in the short term and the long term, but drinking smaller amounts has different effects in the subsequent hours than it does in the subsequent days and weeks," said lead researcher Elizabeth Mostofsky. She's an instructor at the Harvard School of Public Health and a postdoctoral fellow at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. It's possible that the higher risk that occurs in the hours after drinking small amounts of alcohol may be outweighed by the ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, Heart Attack, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Myocardial Infarction, Alcoholism, Hangover, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Thromboembolic Stroke Prophylaxis, Hypertensive Emergency, Intracranial Hemorrhage, Hypertensive Heart Disease, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Study Details Dire Consequences of Fetal Alcohol Disorders

Posted 25 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 25, 2016 – The many behavioral problems experienced by children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders require early attention, a new research review suggests. This group of health problems – caused by mothers drinking alcohol during pregnancy – may include anxiety, aggression, inattention and more, the researchers found. They analyzed published studies and identified three main types of behavioral problems among children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: "internalizing" behaviors such as anxiety, withdrawal and depression; "externalizing" behaviors such as aggression and delinquency; and other issues such as problems with social skills, attention and thought processing. The study, by researchers at the University of Sydney in Australia, was published online Feb. 23 in the journal Pediatrics. "The finding highlights the need for strategies for early intervention, ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hydrocephalus, Brain Anomalies incl Congenital, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Fetal Maturation, Alcoholic Psychosis

Pot Smokers Susceptible to Other Addictions, Study Finds

Posted 17 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 17, 2016 – Pot smokers may be at significantly greater risk for developing an addiction to other drugs or alcohol, a new study suggests. Researchers found that adult marijuana use was associated with greater likelihood of developing alcohol and drug use problems, including nicotine dependence, over three years of follow-up. But it was not associated with greater risk of developing a mood or anxiety disorder. "This new finding raises the possibility that the recent rise in marijuana use may be contributing to the coincident rise in serious harms related to narcotics and other drugs of abuse," said lead researcher Dr. Mark Olfson. He is a professor of psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. The results stem from a sampling of nearly 35,000 adults interviewed three years apart for the U.S. National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related ... Read more

Related support groups: Opiate Dependence, Drug Dependence, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Substance Abuse, Alcoholism, Hangover, Cannabis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Substance Abuse - Cocaine, Benzodiazepine Overdose, Alcoholic Psychosis, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Study Debunks Claim That Drug Treatment Centers Are Unsafe

Posted 15 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 15, 2016 – Violent crimes are less likely to occur near outpatient drug treatment centers than near liquor and corner stores, a new study finds. The findings challenge claims that drug treatment centers attract criminals, according to the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researchers. The researchers examined 2011 data about violent crime in areas near 53 publicly funded drug treatment centers in Baltimore. They found that areas around 53 liquor and corner stores had 25 percent more murders, rapes, assaults and robberies per business. The study didn't include crimes that actually occurred in the liquor and corner stores, because they are known to be robbed more often than drug treatment centers. The study was published recently in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. "Our findings show that drug treatment centers pose no additional risk of violence ... Read more

Related support groups: Opiate Dependence, Opiate Withdrawal, Drug Dependence, Benzodiazepine Withdrawal, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Substance Abuse, Alcoholism, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Substance Abuse - Cocaine

Frequent Monitoring May Keep Alcohol Offenders Sober

Posted 10 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 9, 2016 – A South Dakota program that requires people involved in alcohol-linked crimes to stay away from booze and be closely monitored for drinking appears to reduce deaths, a new study finds. Offenders in the program must undergo breathalyzer tests twice a day or wear bracelets that continuously check for alcohol. Those who skip or fail the tests are immediately jailed for a short time, typically a day or two, the study authors said. The 24/7 Sobriety Program was launched as a pilot program in 2005 and was associated with a 4 percent drop in deaths at the county level. The largest reductions occurred among causes of death linked with excessive drinking, such as circulatory conditions, according to RAND Corp. researchers. "Our findings suggest that criminal justice interventions that reduce heavy alcohol consumption may, in turn, influence mortality," lead author and ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Alcoholic Liver Damage, Alcoholic Cirrhosis, Alcoholic Gastritis with Hemorrhage, Alcoholic Psychosis, Alcoholic Gastritis, Alcoholic Cardiomyopathy, Alcohol Hepatitis, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Alcohol Ads Should Be a No-See on TV for Kids

Posted 13 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 13, 2016 – Children and teens would see far fewer alcohol ads on TV if the alcohol industry tightened – and followed – its own advertising guidelines, a new study suggests. The industry is self-regulated in terms of advertising, and in 2003 introduced guidelines that limit ads to media whose audience is almost three-quarters adult, age 21 and older. But the new study found, between 2005 and 2012, about one in eight alcohol ads on TV shows seen by children and teens did not comply with those industry guidelines. While some alcohol companies have been using the guidelines – known as no-buy lists – to guide their advertising, others have not, according to the study, published in the January issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. These lists put certain TV shows off-limits due to their mostly underage audiences. "Since 2005, kids have been exposed more ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Alcohol Hepatitis

Fewer Teens, Young Adults Driving After Drinking, Smoking Pot: Report

Posted 10 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 10, 2015 – Fewer teens and young adults are driving under the influence of alcohol or a combination of alcohol and marijuana, U.S. health officials reported Thursday. From 2002 to 2014, self-reported driving under the influence of alcohol alone dropped by 59 percent among those aged 16 to 20 and by 38 percent among those aged 21 to 25, the study found. "The decline in driving under the influence of alcohol is probably due to a combination of factors," said lead researcher Dr. Alejandro Azofeifa, an epidemiologist at the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Among these factors are the decline in drinking overall and the decline in binge drinking among high school students, he said. In addition, underage drinking laws have been more strictly enforced, and graduated driving license laws have required that young drivers don't drink and drive, ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Cannabis, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Bullying Can Leave Lasting Mental Scars

Posted 9 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 9, 2015 – Bullying can lead to lasting psychological effects for both victims and tormentors, researchers report. More than 20 percent of children who have suffered bullying are prone to depression serious enough to require medical help by their late 20s, researchers from Finland said. "Frequent victimization at age 8 is associated with adult psychiatric disorders needing treatment," said lead researcher Dr. Andre Sourander, a professor in the department of child psychiatry at the University of Turku. Besides depression, researchers found that bullying or being bullied were associated with psychosis, anxiety, and drug and alcohol abuse. "We need to understand the importance of early peer and school experiences for children," Sourander said. "We should integrate a mental health perspective to anti-bullying campaigns, because early intervention can prevent long-term ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Panic Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Opiate Dependence, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Opiate Withdrawal, Major Depressive Disorder, Schizophrenia, Mania, Drug Dependence, Borderline Personality Disorder, Paranoid Disorder, Schizoaffective Disorder, Alcohol Dependence, Agitation, Alcohol Withdrawal, Psychosis

Women Starting to Match Men's Drinking Habits, Study Finds

Posted 24 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 24, 2015 – American women are catching up to men when it comes to using and abusing alcohol, a new government report shows. The researchers analyzed data from 2002 to 2012 and found that reported alcohol consumption in the previous 30 days rose among women, from almost 45 percent to more than 48 percent, while it fell among men, from slightly more than 57 percent to just over 56 percent. "We found that over that period of time, differences in measures such as current drinking, number of drinking days per month, reaching criteria for an alcohol use disorder, and driving under the influence of alcohol in the past year, all narrowed for females and males," study leader Aaron White, senior scientific advisor to the director of the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), said in an institute news release. "Males still consume more alcohol, but the ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Alcoholic Liver Damage, Alcoholic Gastritis, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Gene Mutation May Be Tied to Drunken Recklessness

Posted 17 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 17, 2015 – Scientists say that they have identified a gene mutation that is linked to an increased risk of impulsive and reckless behavior when drunk. The research also indicates that "persons with this mutation are more impulsive by nature even when sober, and they are more likely to struggle with self-control or mood disorders," study leader and psychiatrist Roope Tikkanen, of the University of Helsinki in Finland, said in a university news release. The mutation occurs in a gene of the serotonin 2B receptor, whose function is little-known but thought to connect with impulsivity, the study authors said. "The impact of one gene on complex phenomena is typically minor. But it is possible to identify the impact of such a genetic mutation in the Finnish population, as our historical isolation has led to a relatively homogenous gene pool," Tikkanen added. More than 2 percent ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Heavy Drinking May Strain the Heart

Posted 10 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 10, 2015 – Heavy drinking may dramatically increase a person's risk of heart failure, even if they're young and healthy, a new study suggests. People who abuse alcohol are 70 percent more likely to develop heart failure, according to findings that were to be presented Tuesday at the American Heart Association's annual meeting in Orlando, Fla. The detrimental effects of hard drinking were particularly pronounced in young and middle-aged adults, and people who were otherwise in good health, said lead researcher Dr. Isaac Whitman, an electrophysiologist at the University of California, San Francisco. However, the study did not prove that heavy drinking causes heart failure. These results suggest that younger adults need to take it easy on the booze, especially if they don't have any risk factors for heart disease, Whitman said. "In the case of alcohol, I don't think it's ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Failure, Congestive Heart Failure, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Left Ventricular Dysfunction, Hangover, Left Ventriculography, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Teens Swayed by Alcohol Ads

Posted 20 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 20, 2015 – Advertising strongly influences which brands of alcohol teens drink, a new study finds. The study found that 13- to 20-year-olds are over five times more likely to drink brands advertised on national television and 36 percent more likely to drink brands advertised in national magazines, compared to brands that don't advertise in these media. The results are from an online national survey conducted by the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth (CAMY) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Boston University School of Public Health. More than 1,000 underage drinkers were asked which of nearly 900 alcohol brands available in the United States they had consumed in the past month. The survey was conducted between December 2011 and May 2012. "Marketing exposure is increasingly recognized as an important factor in youth drinking, yet few studies ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Hangover, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

No Amount of Alcohol Safe During Pregnancy, Doctors Say

Posted 19 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 19, 2015 – While some studies have hinted that a little alcohol might be harmless during pregnancy, a leading U.S. pediatricians' group has issued a new warning that no amount of drinking is safe while pregnant. "The only guarantee of having no effects from alcohol is no prenatal alcohol exposure," said Dr. Janet Williams, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Texas Health Science Center and co-author of the new statement and report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). It's likely, she added, that future research will continue to show that "alcohol has subtle yet important lasting effects on academic performance, attention, behavior, cognition, memory, language skills, and visual and motor development." Physicians and researchers have been warning about the hazards of alcohol use during pregnancy for decades. Yet almost half of all women of childbearing ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Emergency Contraception, Postcoital Contraception, Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Delivery, Alcoholism, Hangover, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation during Pregnancy/Lactation, Premature Labor, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

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