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Tony Mellor

Once an addict and now nominated for Drug Worker of the year, Tony Mellor joins us at Inexcess as our man on the street. Tony's no nonsense, straight forward approach will be a shock for some and a breath of fresh air for many. Stay tuned to hear more from Tony and his unique perspective on the world.

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An Interview with Kathleen T. Brady

Posted by Tony Mellor on Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

Hi all!!

2Tone here, on the case as always. I love this interview with Kathleen Brady as it explains a lot about what is happening throughout the process of addiction and it also provides evidence that recovery in the form of treatment is so important.

Dr Brady is a professor of psychiatry at the Medical School of the University South Carolina, and an expert in addiction and co-occurring psychiatric disorders. In this clip she discusses how underlying disorders like anxiety, depression or trauma can lead to addiction or relapse, stressing the necessity of treating these mental disorders and addiction simultaneously.

There are five questions I think you should consider when watching this piece about treatment.

1. What kind of treatment do you use and how do they work?
Effective treatment programs use a combination of therapies depending on the specific problems the patient faces. These approaches include cognitive behavioural therapy, contingency management, 12 - step facilitation and family therapy.
2. Do you have a credentialed psychiatrist on your treatment staff?
Patients in evidence-based treatment programs are treated by trained psychiatrists. It is especially helpful if those psychiatrists keep up to date on developments in the rapidly evolving addictions treatment field. Membership in a professional society such as American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry or American Society on Addiction Medicine can help professionals keep abreast of things.
3. Do you provide specific medication and/or psychosocial treatment for anxiety, mood and other psychiatric disorders?
Many people with addictions, especially young people, suffer from co-occurring mental health problems. People in treatment must be screened for such disorders so that the treatment plan can take them into account. Otherwise, chances for success are greatly reduced. Anxiety, mood and other psychiatric disorders are the mental health problems most common among people with alcohol and other drug problems. Medical and behavioral (talk therapy) treatments should be tailored to the specific disorder. There is no one-size-fits-all medication or therapy.
4. Are there studies that support the treatments that you use in your program?
In the last two decades, and especially in the most recent years, researchers have examined many approaches to addiction treatment to determine how effective they are. Program leaders should be able to point to careful scientific studies, preferably using a large number of people, that demonstrate a treatment approach’s effectiveness. They should be able to tell you the name of the study or of the scientists who conducted the study, and when the study was conducted.

5. How do you monitor the quality/success of your program?
Treatment programs are just beginning to carefully monitor what happens to clients and patients who go through their programs. Program leaders should be ready and able to talk about what proportion of patients complete their entire program, what proportion suffer relapses in the first 6-12 months after treatment, and generally what proportion of their patients have been able to return to full participation in a healthy life (such as going back to school, or maintaining a job). If they do not yet have this information, they should provide convincing evidence that they are conducting studies so that they will know how well they are doing in the near future.
I thought it was really interesting as it shows how important honesty is during the process of recovery and that it should be proactive.  

Over and out,
Tony2Tone on the case

Category: Tony's Blog

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