While these unprecedented times are stressful for everyone, people with mental health conditions may face particular challenges. Many organizations offer ways to connect and find support online or by phone for general mental health and for specific conditions.
New Research Affirms Effectiveness of AA and Other 12-Step Programs in Treating Alcohol Use Disorder
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) has been helping people recover from alcohol use disorder for more than 80 years. There has been very little rigorous research to date, but a new review study finds AA is effective in helping treat alcohol use disorder and reduces health care costs.
- By Saul Levin, M.D., M.P.A., FRCP-E, FRCPsych
The 2020 presidential election will be one of the most consequential in recent memory. Whoever is inaugurated the following January will have to contend with a growing health care crisis, particularly where mental health and substance use disorders are concerned.
Spiritual or religious based programs, such as those based on the principles of Alcoholics Anonymous, are effective for treating people with substance use disorders, according to the first systematic review of such programs. In the U.S., more than 20 million people 12 years and older (about 7.4%) have a substance use disorder and among 18-to-25-year-olds, 15% have a substance use disorder, according to the 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health.
On August 29, the U.S. Surgeon General issued a new advisory on marijuana use and the developing brain. The advisory focuses on the dangers of marijuana for adolescents and for pregnant women. The statement from Surgeon General Vice Adm. Jerome Adams emphasized “the importance of protecting our Nation from the health risks of marijuana use in adolescence and during pregnancy. Recent increases in access to marijuana and in its potency, along with misperceptions of safety of marijuana endanger our most precious resource, our nation’s youth.”