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August 12, 2016

TACKLING INDIGENOUS SMOKING PORTAL

The Australian Indigenous Alcohol and Other Drugs Knowledge Centre has recently launched the "Tackling Indigenous Smoking Portal".  This online service hosts information for services funded by the "Tackling Indigenous Smoking Programme", but much of the information on the site is useful for any worker or service who is supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait ISlander people to quit smoking. The site includes an overview of activities that are effective at reducing smoking including community health promotion activities like school based education and social marketing approaches, as well as individual activities like brief interventions, and physical activity.

Go to "Tackling Indigenous Smoking Portal"

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August 12, 2016

DRUG CHECKING IN THE UNITED KINGDOM

Researchers in the United Kingdom recently conducted the first large scale drug checking program (sometimes called "pill testing") at a music festival.  The analytical chemist who conducted much of the testing has published an article about his experience at the festival, titled "Testing drugs at a festival teaches you how little most people know about what they're taking". The service found that of the tablets which contained MDMA, the strength ranged from 20mg up to 250mg. They found one batch of tablets that was made entirely of concrete, while the anti-malaria drug chloroquine was being sold as either cocaine or ketamine.  The article goes on to describe the reactions of participants to finding out the test results, and some of the potential implications for future research.

Go to "Testing drugs at a festival teaches you how little most people know about what they're taking"

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August 12, 2016

RESEARCH BULLETIN: SELF-HARM AND YOUNG PEOPLE

This research bulletin from Orygen summarises findings from recent studies reviewing the reasons for self-harm in young adult and youth populations, the impact of a young person's self-harm on family members and the evidence available for effective interventions for adolescents.  The bulletin includes research from 2015 that indicated one in ten Australian adolescents had self-harmed at some point in their lives, with higher rates in young women aged 16-17, where 22.8% had self-harmed.  The describes the most effective responses to self-harm in young people involved "high-quality, large dosage, coordinated, integrated care involving family and non-familial support".

Go to "Orygen Research Bulletin: Self-harm and young people"

 

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August 5, 2016

RESOURCES TO SUPPORT WORK WITH ABORIGINAL YOUNG PEOPLE IN REMOTE COMMUNITIES

In 2015, Dovetail received a small grant from Feb Fast in order to increase access to tools and resources that support alcohol and other drug work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people. Throughout the development of the Dovetail good practice guide "Learning from each other: Working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Young People" a range of resources were identified. The Remote AOD Program from the Northern Territory developed a series of resources including a Brief Wellbeing Screener, and resources designed to support direct client work around cannabis, alcohol, methamphetamine as well as a resource around alcohol and pregnancy. Dovetail has re-printed these resources and they are available free of charge to any worker or community who would like them.

View the resources at the Remote AOD Workforce Program website

If you would like to order free copies of the Remote AOD resources, email info@dovetail.org.au

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August 5, 2016

EXAMINING THE PROFILE OF HIGH POTENCY CANNABIS AND ITS ASSOCATION WITH SEVERITY OF CANNABIS DEPENDENCE

This paper by Freeman and Winstock published in the Psychological Medicine journal in 2015 titled "Examining the profile of high-potency cannabis and its association with severity of cannabis dependence", explores the reasons why the demand for cannabis treatment in the UK is rising when cannabis use is decreasing. Cannabis types were profiled for possible associations between frequency of use and cannabis dependence or cannabis related concerns. High-potency cannabis was distinct by its effects on memory and paranoia. The paper concludes that high-potency cannabis use is associated with an increased severity of dependence, especially in young people, which may be important when considering clinical or public health interventions.

Read "Examining the profile of high-potency cannabis and its association with severity of cannabis dependence" here.

 

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August 5, 2016

ORYGEN WEBINAR: ENGAGING YOUNG MEN IN TREATMENT

Despite research identifying high rates of young people reporting mental health and alcohol and other drug concerns, rates of help-seeking among young Australians, and particularly among young men, remain low. This webinar presented by Dr Simon Rice from Orygen Centre of Excellence for Youth Mental Health will review the current literature on help-seeking and examine barriers and facilitators to young men's access to care. Dr Rice discusses practical ways to engage young men in treatment, as well as identifying key ethical issues in working with young men, including socialisation, diversity, and propensity for risk-taking.

https://orygen.org.au/Campus/Expert-Network/Webinars/Engaging-young-men-in-mental-health-settings

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July 29, 2016

CHILD, ADOLESCENT AND YOUNG ADULT SUICIDES IN QUEENSLAND

An article has been published in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Behaviour titled "Child, adolescent and young adult suicides: A comparison based on the Queensland suicide registry". The Queensland suicide registry records all suicides in Queensland since 1990, and contains information from police reports, autopsy and toxicology information, Coroner's findings and a narrative report of the circumstances of death. In this report, 850 youth suicides from 2002 to 2011 were analysed, focusing on differences between the age groups 10-14 (children / early adolescents), 15-19 (late adolescents) and 20-24 (young adults). Across the entire sample, the authors found that one in five young people had made a previous suicide attempt, and more than one third had communicated their intent to commit suicide in the twelve months before their deaths. The authors found a number of important differences across the age cohorts. For example, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people made up 45.2% of suicides in the 10 - 14 year old age group.

Read "Child, adolescent and young adult suicides: A comparison based on the Queensland suicide registry"

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July 29, 2016

SPEAK EASY: CONVERSATIONS IN THE MARGINS

The Centre for Social Research in Health, Arts and Social Sciences at the University of New South Wales has launched a new podcast series called "Speak Easy with Annie Madden and Carla Treloar". Annie Madden has had a long involvement with AIVL (Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League) including 16 years as Executive Officer. Professor Carla Treloar has a significant background in social research particularly in the areas of injecting drug use and hepatitis C. In this new podcast series, Carla and Annie hold engaging conversations with special guests each week.

Go to Speak Easy: Conversations in the margins

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July 29, 2016

MOTIVATIONAL INTERVIEWING FOR PREVENTING ALCOHOL MISUSE AND RELATED PROBLEMS

A new report has been published on the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, titled "Motivational Interviewing for the prevention of alcohol misuse in young adults".  The article considered 84 trials with 22 872 participants that followed up participants for at least 4 months. The authors found that Motivational Interviewing had no substantive or meaningful benefit in preventing alcohol use, misuse or alcohol related problems.  The authors found some statistically significant effects, but these effect sizes were too small to be considered relevant to policy or practice.

Go to "Motivational Interviewing for the prevention of alcohol misuse in young adults"



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July 22, 2016

WHAT ARE THE INTERACTIONS BETWEEN PSYCHIATIRC MEDICATIONS AND PSYCHOACTIVE DRUGS?

The Queensland Network of Alcohol and Other Drug Agencies (QNADA) has developed a series of resources that highlight the possible interactions between psychiatric medications and common psychoactive drugs.  There are fact sheets designed for clients, as well as a set of fact sheets designed for health professionals.  The fact sheets cover all the major psychiatric medications including atypical antipsychotics, mood stabilisers, SSRIs and more, along with alcohol, cannabis, hallucinogens, nicotine, opioids and stimulants.  This resource will come in very handy for anyone working with clients who may combine substances with their psychiatric medications.

Go to QNADA Harm Reduction Resources



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