April is Alcohol Awareness Month
Did you know? In 1958, our agency was first launched as "The North Shore Committee on Alcoholism (NSCA)?" Back then, eleven local people founded the NSCA to educate the public about the disease of alcoholism and to increase treatment options on the North Shore of Massachusetts.
Ten years later, in 1968, the Committee opened a 20-bed halfway house on Green Street in Lynn, Mass.
Today, the Ryan House is still thriving as one of our post-detoxification residential facilities. Of course, since 1958, we have expanded all of our local and regional services to meet the increased community needs for addiction and mental health treatments.
Alcohol Awareness Month
April is Alcohol Awareness Month, a time when the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) works to heighten national awareness around the effects of alcohol use on our communities, workplaces and families.
Facts About Alcohol from the NCADD
-88,000 deaths are annually attributed to excessive alcohol useAlcoholism is the third leading lifestyle-related cause of death in the nation
-Excessive alcohol use is responsible for 2.5 million years of potential life lost annually, or an average of about 30 years of potential life lost for each death
-Up to 40% of all hospital beds in the United States (except for those being used by maternity and intensive care patients) are being used to treat health conditions that are related to alcohol consumption
Prom-Season Stress and Anxiety: It doesn’t Have to be That Way
From graduation requirements to the upcoming prom, spring can be an extra anxious time for teens and, by extension, their parents or guardians.
Anxiety is a normal and necessary part of our lives. It motivates us to prepare for important events. It helps us to stay safe and acts as our natural alarm system to warn of impending dangers.
However, for some of us, anxiety is uncontrollable and overwhelming. In fact, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (aada.org), anxiety is the most commonly diagnosed mental illness in the U.S. today.
Due to a variety of factors (life events, genetics, lack of coping skills), this natural alarm system can become overly sensitive and easily triggered by situations that are not, in themselves, dangerous.
For some teens, one of these anxiety-provoking situations is the school prom.
Overwhelming anxiety can interrupt sleep, damage relationships and impact overall health. Also, as we know from our teen-focuses substance use programs, some anxious adolescents self-manage their anxiety by using alcohol or illegal drugs—sometimes with dangerous and heartbreaking results.
The good news about anxiety: We can develop a mental tool box of ready-to-use tips and tricks for those anxious moments.
ACA Repeal: Stories from the Frontlines of Mental Health Treatment and Care
As we know, the legislative efforts to repeal and replace the Affodrable Care Act (ACA) —including or especially a potential rollback of the Act’s Medicaid expansion — carry particularly and criticially high risks for men, women and families in treatment for addiction and mental health disorders.
Nationwide, 24 million of us stand to lose Medicaid coverage, while here in Massachusetts, an estimated 300,000 MassHealth-covered families and individuals could lose access to affordable care.
In last week's blog post, we promised to bring you a series of stories from the frontlines of behavioral health — real-life patient vignettes that demonstrate how access to publicly-funded care changes (or saves) our clients' or patients' lives.
Here’s this week’s story from one of our outpatient counseling clinics on the North Shore:
Repealing and Replacing The Affordable Care Act: What We Stand to Lose
First, welcome to our new behavioral health and wellness blog.
We hadn't planned it this way, but it's fortuitious that our blog is going live at this critical juncture in the future of American healthcare--particularly for low and middle-income families and individuals.
On Monday, March 6, the U.S. House Republicans unveiled its long-awaited plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
The legislative efforts to repeal and replace the ACA--including or especially a potential rollback of the Act's Medicaid expansion--carry special risks for men, women and families struggling with addiction and mental health disorders.
Of course, this is not the only patient sub-group who stands to lose here, but these are the folks who we, at Lahey Health Behavioral Services, are privileged to serve. Our clients' health and recovery are what inspire us all to go to work every day.
Or, as Linda Rosenberg, president and CEO, National Council for Behavioral Health writes, "Medicaid is not a partisan issue; it is a human issue."