magazine

The Great Gateway Theory

Smoke pot, shoot smack? The Great Gateway Hypothesis has had a long, controversial run as a central tenet of American anti-drug campaigns. As put forth by Denise B. Kandell of Columbia University and others in 1975, and refined and redefined ever since, the gateway theory essentially posits that soft drugs like alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana—particularly …

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Celebrating the Holidays with Recovering Family Members and Friends

Peter Gaumond, Chief, ONDCP Recovery Branch This time each year can be stressful for anyone, but the holidays present a special challenge for people recovering from a substance use disorder. Those in long-term recovery typically are adept at navigating the minefield of temptation at holiday social gatherings. But many of those in their first year …

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Veterans Enjoy the Comradery of VA-facilitated SMART Recovery Meetings

By Melinda Gaddy, Ph.D. A SMART Recovery group member at VA Eastern Kansas Health Care System (Dwight D. Eisenhower Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center) stated during their first meeting back after a period of absence from SMART, “The ABCs are so annoying, but they really do work.” We had just finished setting our agenda for …

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Freud and his Drug Demons

Cocaine addiction and psychoanalysis. That Sigmund Freud was a cocaine abuser for some portion of his professional life is by now well known. Reading An Anatomy of Addiction by Howard Markel, M.D., which chronicles the careers of Freud and another famed cocaine abuser, Johns Hopkins surgeon William Halsted, I was struck by the many ways …

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Cannabis Receptors and the Runner’s High

[First published August 4 2010] Maybe it isn’t endorphins after all. What do long-distance running and marijuana smoking have in common? Quite possibly, more than you’d think. A growing body of research suggests that the runner’s high and the cannabis high are more similar than previously imagined. The nature of the runner’s high is inconsistent …

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