Refining Addiction: Notable Changes and Future Implications

Language nuances change over time as society gains greater awareness and sensitivity regarding the struggles experienced by various groups of people. In the addiction treatment community, we’re well aware of the stigma often associated with the disease and its related vocabulary. The concepts of alcohol and drug dependency weren’t considered an illness until 1956. In fact, addiction wasn’t officially classified as a disease until 1987. The definition of addiction was revised in 2011 and the American Society of Addiction Medicine recently produced an updated definition yet again.

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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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National Recovery Month: Casey Carrozza’s Recovery Journey

Every September, we observe National Recovery Month. Hosted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Recovery Month aims to increase awareness and understanding of mental health and substance use disorders, while promoting professional services that help people in need.

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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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It’s Tee Time for Spectrum Health System’s 18th Annual Golf Tournament

We’re eagerly preparing for Spectrum’s 18th Annual Charity Golf Tournament – our largest fundraiser of the year! On Monday, September 30th, Spectrum will take over the links at the Worcester Country Club in Worcester, MA to raise money in support of our mission to improve the lives of individuals impacted by addiction.

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Spectrum Health Systems Makes Long-Term Investment in Employees’ Professional Development

At Spectrum Health Systems, we attribute our success to our incredible staff. In order to attract and retain talented individuals who share our mission of providing the highest quality of addiction treatment, we offer a robust Educational Assistance program which supports all employees in their professional development. This year alone, we’ve provided more than $200,000 to support our staff in continuing their education. Clients ultimately benefit from having highly trained staff committed to enhancing their skills and knowledge.

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Spectrum’s Edition of Extreme Makeover

Recently, our peer recovery centers received a home makeover! As we celebrate our 50th anniversary of serving those struggling with addiction throughout Massachusetts and beyond, we thought it was time for some new digs.

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Get to Know Shannon Coolahan, Spectrum Health Systems’ Outpatient Clinician

Working in addiction treatment can be tough, but our incredible staff love their jobs. This week, we’re talking with one of our Master’s level clinicians, Shannon Coolahan, who has worked in our outpatient treatment center located in Waltham, Massachusetts for the past two years.

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50 Years of Spectrum

As you may have heard, Spectrum Health Systems has been celebrating its 50th anniversary this year! We’ve come a long way since the company’s founding in 1969. As substance abuse has changed over the past 50 years, so too has Spectrum – in order to better treat individuals impacted by substance use disorders.

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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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579 Hits

PTSD Awareness Day – June 27th

Back in 2010, Senator Kent Conrad spearheaded a campaign to create an official form of recognition of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) through a “day of awareness.” Senator Conrad was passionate about the creation of an awareness day as a tribute to North Dakota National Guard serviceman, Staff Sergeant Joe Biel, who took his own life in 2007 following two tours in Iraq. Staff Sergeant Biel’s birthday was June 27th, thus its selection as National PTSD Awareness Day. In 2014, the entire month of June was designated as National PTSD Awareness month.

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Pride Month: How Addiction Impacts the LGBTQ+ Community

Pride Month is here! The month-long celebration of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community is a time for fun, raising awareness and reflection. The LGBTQ community faces many hardships, from accepting their own identities to coming out to facing social and political adversity.

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Four Outstanding Spectrum Employees Celebrate 20 Years with Spectrum Health Systems

Four of our talented employees recently celebrated their 20th anniversary with Spectrum! Barbara Tingley, Lisa Blanchard, Earl Warren, and Carole Palaima have all dedicated decades to our organization. To show our gratitude for their hard work and support for Spectrum’s mission, we hosted a celebration luncheon for all home office staff. After lunch, CEO Kurt Isaacson asked why they have chosen to stay with Spectrum for so long.

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Mental Health Month: The Connection Between Addiction and Mental Health Grows

While mental health has become a widely talked about topic in recent years, May is the official observance for mental health awareness.

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719 Hits

50 Addiction Facts in 50 Days to Celebrate 50 Years of Spectrum Health Systems

50 days from today, the team at Spectrum Health Systems will be celebrating the company’s 50th anniversary. Since our inception, we’ve seen a lot of positive changes in the addiction treatment field and recovery community. While many improvements have been made, there’s still much work to be done.

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583 Hits

Addiction and Depression: A Vicious Cycle

According to the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 7.9 million Americans have been diagnosed with both depression and addiction. Each disease can be difficult to deal with on its own, so dealing with both at the same time is obviously more challenging. With depression being one of the most prevalent mental health disorders in the United States, it’s no surprise that many depressed individuals also suffer from a substance use disorder.

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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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How Spectrum and Massachusetts DOC Work Together to Treat Female Offenders

According to the American Civil Liberties Union, there are more than 219,000 women incarcerated across the United States. Many wonder what brought them in contact with the criminal justice system. Oftentimes, women serving time behind bars struggle with co-occurring disorders – the combination of mental health disorders and addiction – which can be a result of unhealthy relationships, dysfunctional home environments and past trauma.

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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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1009 Hits