Blog: News & Views from the Field

Knowledge can be empowering. Whether you are seeking recovery for yourself or someone else, we hope you find our blog topics helpful. Check back often or subscribe today.

Understanding Naloxone: Here’s How You Can Make A Difference for People Struggling with Addiction

Did you know that October 26 is National Make A Difference Day? Coming together to make a difference strengthens communities, overcomes adversity and builds resilience. To honor the event, we’re encouraging all to carry naloxone (otherwise known by brand names NARCAN® and EVZIO®) to save the lives of people dying from an opioid overdose.

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Spectrum Health Systems to Host Free Family Education Program on November 23rd – Sign Up Today!

At Spectrum Health Systems, we know from experience that when someone is struggling with substance use disorder, he or she does not suffer alone – the family suffers as well. As part of our client-centered, holistic approach to addiction treatment, we believe in the importance of family-focused programming.

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How Has Addiction and Treatment Changed in the Last 50 Years?

Spectrum Health Systems was founded 50 years ago, and in that time, we’ve seen extensive strides taken in drug and alcohol addiction treatment. Much has changed, and much has stayed the same – some treatments still in use today were introduced as early as the 1960s. Before we jump into changes in treatment over time, let’s start by discussing the issue itself – addiction.

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How to Deal with Triggers in the Workplace

Many believe that addiction only affects the unemployed and homeless when, in reality, most are employed. In fact, of the estimated 96 million adults reported to have a substance use disorder, 72 percent are employed.

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Spectrum’s Domestic Violence Education Program Aims to Change Harmful Behavior, Beliefs and Attitudes

On average, 20 people each minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. Each year, this equates to more than 10 million women and men who suffer from domestic violence. With one in four women and one in nine men experiencing severe intimate partner physical violence, they are also likely suffering from sexual abuse, stalking, post-traumatic stress disorder, sexually transmitted diseases and more.

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Today’s Students Aren’t Worse Off, They’re Simply Different

According to the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, there is a strong connection between childhood trauma and substance use disorders. Adolescents who engage in problematic substance use are more likely to develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression, suicidal thoughts, violent behaviors and other mental health disorders.

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1062 Hits

Inside Look: Driver Alcohol Education Program

If you’ve been following our Inside Look series, then you know of our comprehensive continuum of care for people with substance use disorders. What many people don’t know is that we also offer several court-ordered sessions that could fall under the category of preventative care. One such program is our Driver Alcohol Education Program.

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How One Veteran Tackled Physical Pain, PTSD and Addiction

Every year, in the second week of November, this country honors its heroes. Veteran’s Day is a stark reminder that courageous men and women have fought hard for America’s freedoms. In the addiction community, it inspires us to pause and reflect on the effects of war on our soldiers, long after they leave the battlefield.

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2731 Hits

The Forgotten Population: Inmates in Recovery

An Airing Addiction Recap

 

In a recent study conducted by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, it was found that 84 percent of current inmates in the state prison system were under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol at the time of their crime. While that may come as a surprise, the need for addiction treatment within the walls of prison, should not.

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1529 Hits

Are States Ready to Implement Medication-Assisted Treatment in Correctional Settings?

Recently, State Director Earl Warren and Regional Program Director Nicole Rendon from Spectrum’s Correctional Division conducted a workshop on medication-assisted treatment to administrators and behavioral health practitioners attending the American Correctional Association’s 148th Congress of Corrections in Minneapolis. Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is being considered by many criminal justice authorities to help address the rising number of individuals addicted to opioids in the justice system.

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What We Can All Learn From Demi Lovato’s Relapse

Pop singer Demi Lovato’s story is common. She was six years sober before she overdosed in her home on July 24. She was revived with naloxone and transported to the hospital. Relapse is often part of the lifelong recovery journey and should not be viewed as a failure. In fact, between 40 to 60 percent of people relapse.

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Inside Look: Peer Recovery Support

You may have noticed that a lot of our treatment programs revolve around group meetings, group therapy and group activities. Peer recovery support best exemplifies the power of groups to not only help people strive for and maintain recovery, but build a foundation for the rest of their lives.

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1828 Hits

Road to Recovery: David Crawley’s Story

Fifty-four-year-old David Crawley grew up in a big family – two brothers, two sisters and two parents. The Crawley family was supportive and loving, but his hometown of Roxbury, Massachusetts was filled with drugs, violence and crime which were hard to avoid.

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How Spectrum Helps Clients and Staff Cope with Death

“We didn’t need news articles to tell us how bad the opioid epidemic is,” claims Heidi DiRoberto, MA, LMHC, program director at Spectrum Health Systems. Before news of the opioid epidemic was being reported in almost every media outlet across the nation, our medical and clinical staff were already into the weeds treating opioid addiction. It is estimated by the Department of Public Health that Massachusetts is experiencing 4-6 fatal opioid overdoes a day.

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2073 Hits

An Inside Look: The Family Education Forum

If you’ve been involved in the Spectrum Health Systems or New England Recovery Center communities for any amount of time, you’ve seen or heard us stress the importance of involving family and loved ones in the recovery process. For many years, we’ve offered the Family Education Forum at each of our outpatient centers across Massachusetts.

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For Spectrum Health Systems, Treating Addiction Often Means Treating Trauma Too

For many of our clients, addiction is usually not an isolated problem. Many also experience mental health issues and the after-effects of physical and mental trauma. The Trauma-Informed Care Program, which we introduced last year, is designed to build understanding amongst our staff and enhance their ability to effectively interact with clients who have suffered from trauma in the past.

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2035 Hits

Examining Co-occurring Mental and Substance Use Disorders - A 3-Part Series

Part 1: The Challenge of Mental Illness in Substance Abuse Treatment

 

This is the first of three blogs to examine co-occurring mental and substance use disorders. In this first blog, we review the prevalence of mental disorders among persons in addiction treatment, myths related to mental illness, key problems and challenges, and how to accurately identify persons with mental disorders. A second blog will explore effective treatment strategies for this population, and a third blog will focus on the importance of continuing care and transition services for persons who have co-occurring disorders.

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4880 Hits

Inside Look: What is Medication-Assisted Treatment?

In our Inside Look series, we’re taking you behind the curtain of each of Spectrum Health Systems’ services to prepare you for your journey to sobriety. If you haven’t already, go back and check out our posts on outpatient treatment, inpatient detoxification, clinical stabilization and residential treatment.

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Spectrum Experts Make a Case for Medication-Assisted Treatment in Prisons at Recent Corrections Conference

Earlier this month, our Vice President of Clinical Development Dr. Romas Buivydas and State Director of MA Correctional Services Earl Warren teamed up to present to attendees of the American Correctional Association’s winter conference about the importance of adopting medication-assisted treatment (MAT) in America’s prisons.

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An Inside Look: Outpatient Treatment

Entering treatment is critical for anybody struggling with a substance use disorder, but beginning the process can be intimidating. You’re not sure what to expect, and there’s a lot of misinformation out there. In our Inside Look series, we’re taking you behind the curtain of Spectrum Health Systems to prepare you for your journey to sobriety. If you haven’t already, go back and check out our posts on inpatient detoxification, clinical stabilization and residential treatment.

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