Golden Globe-winning actor Brad Pitt confessed in a recent interview with Esquire magazine that his marriage with Jennifer Aniston was also the time he found solace in drugs, the Fox News reports.
“For a long time I thought I did too much damage – drug damage. I was a bit of a drifter. A guy who felt he grew up in something of a vacuum and wanted to see things, wanted to be inspired. I followed that other thing. I spent years f***ing off,” Pitt told the magazine. “But then I got burnt out and felt that I was wasting my opportunity. It was a conscious change… This was about a decade ago. It was an epiphany.”
Pitt believes his foray into drugs has something to do with his marriage and referenced his 90’s pastime of “sitting on a couch, holding a joint, hiding out.” He admits, though, that his life turned differently when he married Angelina Jolie, whom he met and co-starred in the movie Mr. & Mrs. Smith.
He credits his union with Jolie and his relationship with their kids as the reason for his new found happiness and sobriety.
“I always thought that if I wanted to do a family, I wanted to do it big. I wanted there to be chaos in the house … there’s constant chatter in our house, whether it’s giggling or screaming or crying or banging,” Pitt said. ” I love it. I love it. I love it.”
Teenagers struggle with so many issues, but the most common of which is addiction to banned substances.
The May 2013 issue of CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) showed that drugs, alcohol and tobacco abuse and dependence affect 1.7 million U.S. adolescents aged 12-17 years, two-thirds of this population had reported illicit drug use disorder in 2011.
Using data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), CDC found that alcohol use and abuse were highest among teens living in the West. During 2010 and 2011, more than 28 percent of adolescents aged 12-17 reported using alcohol during the past year.
Meanwhile, nearly 700,000 12 to 17-year-olds are addicted to tobaaco. Ruth Perou, PhD, CDC’s Child Development Studies Team Leader, told NBC News that this addiction doesn’t pertain to casual user or experimentation, but serious addiction.
“You are looking at something that is debilitating and really impairs their ability to function day to day,” Perou explains.
Aside from alcohol and tobacco products, the most commonly abused substances were marijuana, cocaine, heroin, inhalants, and prescription drugs.
Perou said CDC is working to help come up with more approaches that work in treatment all substance abuse and mental health disorders that are killing the potentials of today’s youth. She invites parents and teachers to check CDC’s available information which can help in spotting risky behaviors in kids and teens.
Addiction is a treatable disease. However, the road to recovery is not always an easy path to tread, especially if without the support of family and people who can understand what you’re going through. But thanks to the influence of new media, recovering addicts can turn to the Internet to connect with and learn from other people going through similar situation.
Below are some blogs and websites where you can leave comments and share ideas on the different aspects of addiction recovery.
12 Steps Ahead – a user-friendly blog for recovering individuals who want to share their experience, strength and hope with others. It features recovery-based news, events, and videos. It provides access to real stories, daily reflections, and topics about sobriety, addiction treatment, substance abuse, and more. It also encourages you to submit recovery experience and thoughts.
The 12-Step Buddhist – this website is run by Darren Littlejohn, a recovering addict and practitioner of Zen and Tibetan Buddhism. It features how-to articles, podcast, discussion and commentary pages, videoblog, photoblog, book reviews, and retreat programs.
My Route to Help – a website that offers information on addiction, encouragement to people who want to get sober, advice on harm reduction, and other self-help services. You can read stories of people who have once been overpowered by substance abuse and eventually able to overcome their addiction. It also gives you an opportunity to share your own experience, as well as learn from other people’s struggles.
Pressing The Issue – this blog is created to help people dealing with substance abuse. It tackles different addiction treatments and gives information on various drugs and their effects. Aside from addiction and recovery articles, you can also check recommended books that can help you further understand the nature of substance abuse.
Awakened Recoveries – a website founded by Gregg D. — a recovered alcoholic, writer, poet, gifted speaker, and university instructor. It provides comprehensive details on the 12-step recovery program, as well as video posts on practicing the principles of 12 steps and the phases of addiction recovery.
We all know that performance-enhancing drugs are widely used by many professional sports figures and high school student athletes who want to gain competitive advantage in their sports. We also know that men aren’t the only ones who are using them, but also women who want to achieve a sinewy look or an improved physical strength for whatever purpose. However, it appears that not many of us are fully aware of the adverse side effects of using those drugs as much we know of the nice things they can do to the user’s body.
Here are three of the most widely used performance-enhancing drugs and the risks they can bring to the user’s health.
This is probably the most popular performance-enhancing drugs among athletes and teens. They are used to increase muscle mass and strength. Although they have approved medical uses, they are not recommended to boost athletic performance. Still, many athletes are using them as the easiest and fastest way of bulking up.
In men, the negative side effects of anabolic steroids include baldness, shrunken testicles, infertility, impotence, and prominent breasts. In women, the effects include developing deeper voice, enlarged clitoris, increased body hair, irregular periods, and baldness. Men and women who are into anabolic steroids are also at risk of severe acne, liver abnormalities and tumor, high blood pressure, drug dependence, depression, aggressive behaviors, and infectious diseases like HIV (usually acquired through drug injections).
Human Growth Hormone
This performance-enhancing drug is known to produce anabolic effect. Athletes use them to enhance muscle mass and performance. The drug can be obtained only by prescription and is administered by injection. Although it allows tired muscles to recover quicker, thereby allowing an athlete to train harder, it doesn’t guarantee better performance. Among the side effects of the drug include joint pain, muscle weakness, fluid retention, diabetes, high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol level, and impaired sugar regulation. In addition, it could enlarge liver and kidneys which may lead to more serious health problems.
Although commonly used to treat anemia in people with severe kidney disease, this drug is widely used by endurance athletes because of its effect on red blood cell production which gives athletes noticeable endurance boost. The procedure for EPO use, however, carry greater health risk in the sense that it increases the user’s risk for stroke, heart attack and pulmonary edema. Athletes who are blood doping are also more likely to experience seizures and hypertension. EPO injection must carried out with extreme caution, as the blood can be difficult to store and administer.
Drug use has claimed the lives of so many people in the U.S., and as years go by the number of people dying from drug overdoses has continue to alarm the law enforcement and public health officials.
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drug fatalities increased 3 percent in 2010. Preliminary data for 2011 indicate the figure keeps adding up.
CDC researchers found prescription painkillers, such as OxyContin and Vicodin, as top drivers for the increasing drug deaths. The numbers were a disappointment for public health officials, who had expressed hope that educational and enforcement programs would stem the rise in fatal overdoses, the Los Angeles Time reports.
“While most things are getting better in the health world, this isn’t,” CDC director Tom Frieden said in an interview. “It’s a big problem, and it’s getting worse. The data supporting long-term use of opiates for pain, other than cancer pain, is scant to nonexistent. These are dangerous drugs. They’re not proven to have long-term benefit for non-cancer pain, and they’re being used to the detriment to hundreds of thousands of people in this country.”
Frieden added there are some promising tools which can help combat the problem. One of them is the use of computerized drug monitoring programs by health care professionals.
In California, there’s the prescription drug monitoring program known as CURES but officials are not proactively using it to identify people who “doctor shop” or physicians who over-prescribe medicines.
Gil Kerlikowske, President Obama’s drug czar, echoed Frieden’s call for aggressive monitoring by state medical boards. He agrees that medical practitioners should be more proactive in fighting prescription drug abuse by utilizing state drug monitoring database instead of just waiting for someone to complain.