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Hope for Depressed Addicts

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

Not so long ago Alcoholics Anonymous was regarded with condescension by many professionals working in the addiction field. A common view was that science-based techniques, like Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) had made the Anonymous Fellowships seem like a quaint and outmoded quasi-religious cult. At the same time, there were encouraging signs of scientific method being […]


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‘Natural Recovery’ from Addiction: Implications for Treatment

Monday, October 15th, 2012

‘Natural recovery’ is a term used to describe recovery from addiction without the help of professionals. It’s a term that rather implies there’s something unnatural about the professional or even AA route. However, other terms that have been used are also problematic, given that they all embody an explanation of the phenomenon that is open to question. For example, Tuchfield (1981) was one of the first to describe what he called “spontaneous recovery”, although the recovery his alcohol dependent respondents described were generally the product of a sense of shame that had grown over a long period of time, even if the ultimate decision was sudden.


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The World of Gambling

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

“Let’s Back our Boys and Bet NOW!” “Bet in play NOW!” The above exhortations, and others in the same vein, were made in raucous advertisements shown on live TV coverage just before kick-off and at half-time in England’s European Championship games this month. They were startling, attention-grabbing, and no doubt had people reaching for their […]


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Treatment of Drug Addiction: When is it successful?

Monday, June 11th, 2012

When can we say that treatment of drug addiction has been successful? The problem of deciding what constitutes success, or even improvement has generated heated debate between therapists, most notably in the past between 12-steps, psychoanalytic and behavioural enthusiasts. It has also divided policy makers. Those who favour prevention and environmental control are sceptical of […]


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Minimum Unit Pricing for Alcoholic Drinks

Monday, May 7th, 2012

Who will drink less when minimum pricing for alcohol is introduced? The spectre of young people bingeing on cheap supermarket booze before setting out on evening revels in pubs and clubs has been a significant factor that has encouraged our legislators to introduce a minimum price for a unit of alcohol in this country. Will […]


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