Drug and alcohol addiction are conditions that affect not only the substance user but the people close to them as well. The dynamics of addiction and family members can result in a range of harmful interactions and outcomes that make addiction a family disease. Family members of individuals with addiction often struggle with addiction themselves. However, even if an individual grows up in a family with addiction and doesn’t develop an addiction themselves, they’ll still be more likely to struggle with trauma, mental health, and developmental disorders. Furthermore, the many family roles in addiction can produce codependent or enabling behaviours that perpetuate the addiction.
The development of dialectical behavioural therapy (DBT) was motivated by one psychiatrist’s desire to create a comprehensive toolkit of highly effective practical skills for people to manage even their most intense and uncomfortable emotions. In a similar way, if one were to boil it all down, the essence of all the work we do at EHN Canada is helping people learn skills to effectively manage their out-of-control emotions.
An intensive outpatient program (IOP) is an addiction or mental health treatment program designed for individuals who need more structure and intensive treatment than they can get from standard treatment options such as one-on-one therapy, medication, and support groups on their own. Best suited for patients with mild-to-moderate symptoms, IOP’s can be as effective as residential treatment for many people.
There are many reasons why LGBTQ+ people face higher rates of addiction and mental health disorders than others. According to research, LGBTQ+ people are 2-to-4 times more likely to have a substance use disorder than their heterosexual counterparts. These addictions include alcohol, smoking, and other drugs. Some people, heterosexual or LGBTQ+, report using drugs not only for partying, but also for sex. However, this might happen more often among LGBTQ+ people. Many drugs that are more popular among LGBTQ+ people enhance energy and libido, and increase feelings of intimacy. For some people who have discomfort with their sexual orientation, drugs can lift inhibitions and increase the joy of their nightlife. Some regular community events that are popular with LGBTQ+ people, including circuit parties, more commonly involve drug use. A questionnaire-based study of gay men in San Francisco found that half of the studied population who had attended bars and dance clubs reported using methamphetamine in the past three months. As many as 46% of gay men surveyed reported drug use in the past year. Substance use problems are not exclusive to gay men. Lesbian and bisexual women report higher rates of alcohol use disorders than women of other sexual orientations.