Real recovery happens in small bytes,
one moment at a time.
Here we’ll share evidence, stories, opinions, and points of view on the positive impact that technology can have on addiction, relapse, and recovery. Our goal is to cut through the clutter and get to the heart of the matter—real and lasting recovery is why we do what we do.
Welcome to Recovery Bytes.
Kathy Carroll, Leaving a Legacy of Innovation For Those In Need
For so many, this year has been more than challenging. As we headed into the holidays we thought that, perhaps, this was it and that a new year—a better year—was just around the corner. Sadly, we begin this final week of 2020 without our friend, peer and highly esteemed colleague Dr. Kathleen Carroll.
Substance Use Disorder, a Complex Illness That Spreads in Isolation
Substance Use Disorder (SUD) is a complex illness that spreads in isolation. Our mission is to promote real and lasting recovery by leveraging technology to create and maintain connection and offer proactive support to mitigate crisis. Our platform is a powerful, proven solution to the problem exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
September is National Recovery Month, with the mission to “promote and support new evidence-based treatment and recovery practices, the emergence of a strong and proud recovery community, and the dedication of service providers and community members across the nation who make recovery in all its forms possible.”1. In light of the ongoing pandemic and increased need of those suffering from SUDs to find new ways to access recovery support, the theme of 2020’s recovery month is appropriately Join the Voices for Recovery: Celebrating Connections.
Best Practices For Choosing And Implementing A Digital SUD Treatment Solution
The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us many things about deficiencies in our healthcare delivery system when it comes to substance use disorder (SUD) treatment. During the height of the pandemic, social distancing made it difficult for SUD patients to get counseling or to go to community support groups—many of which were canceled. Although telehealth has helped, video conferencing can make personal engagement and cohesive discussions—especially in group therapy—more challenging. Drug testing and refilling prescriptions also became more difficult, making medication adherence problematic.
Research Links The Use Of Smartphone App To Improved Retention In Sud Treatment Programs
The war against opioid addiction is still raging onward, even though it’s taken less of the spotlight lately. The CDC’s most recent numbers indicate that more than 69,000 people still die each year from drug overdose. While the numbers are trending downward, getting patients into care—and keeping them in retention longer—is still a key barrier to winning the battle. But that’s changing, especially in the area of retention. And that’s good news as research shows that longer retention results in more favorable outcomes.
An Infection of Fear: The Unseen Victims of COVID-19
As a sense of dread spreads across America around the COVID-19 pandemic, the impact on those struggling with substance use disorder (SUD) is even more significant, yet relatively unacknowledged. Fear of getting the coronavirus is driving those with SUD to make decisions that put their lives at risk—not from the virus, but from a real, even more life-threatening concern: overdose.
A Crisis on Top of a Crisis
The social distancing and quarantine orders in place across the land are effective in slowing the spread of coronavirus, but the destructive consequence is that they unravel the very support structure that people in recovery depend on.
Three Opportunities To Improve SUD Transitions Of Care And Reduce Dropouts
Opioid deaths, addiction, and misuse of prescription drugs continue to be significant issues for communities across the country. The good news is that we are making progress. Besides additional support from the White House, payers are stepping up coverage for support and treatment. While we can celebrate our progress thus far, we need to be cognizant that we still have a long way to go. One of the major barriers inhibiting success remains a disjointed continuum of care for SUD patients. When patients experience fragmented care, especially in transitions of care, they are more likely to abandon treatment.
New Year, Same Problems – or New Year, New You?
For so many people who struggle with addiction and Substance Use Disorder, this can be one of the most difficult times of year. Holiday parties at work or with friends invite overindulgence in the name of celebration. Family gatherings, so often an emotional minefield, can reopen old inner wounds, and inflict new pain as well. The arrival of a new year can be just another reminder of time and opportunity wasted, and the start of another round of despair and desperation.
Prison and Addiction
The Massachusetts Department of Correction press release announces more than $1.2 million in federal funds intended to "treat opioid use disorder among inmates effectively and humanely . . . " At Chess Health, we’re delighted by this news.
Home for the Holidays, Recovery Not Relapse
Like your sobriety date, the holiday season marks important milestones on the calendar. It's a time of year filled with memories and the anticipation of time spent with family and friends. Whether it is the first season of sobriety or many years into recovery, the holidays are a time of year that heightens feelings of vulnerability, stress, and loneliness. So how do you maintain your sobriety and survive the holidays?
The Power of Two for Treating Substance Use Disorder
Those who work in the Substance Use Disorder treatment community will likely find Kathleen Hannigan’s observation relevant – especially when the discussion turns to the best way to incorporate technology into the recovery mix. Mobile health tools hold promise, but most recovery experts believe that without peer support, their effectiveness is limited. It’s the power of both that can make the difference in recovery outcomes.
Benzodiazepines and Opioids: A Deadly Combination
Reducing Gaps in Information is Key to Treatment Success
The latest statistics from the CDC indicate 63,632 Americans died in 2016 from drug overdose, 66% of which were related to opioids.1 Of those, JAMA reports an estimated 30% occurred while patients were also using benzodiazepines.2 This, unfortunately, is not surprising as the risk of an overdose within the first 90 days of concurrent use is five times that of opioid use alone.2
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