Substance Abuse

It is tempting to many to drink or take a drug to ‘reduce our stress,’ because we are socializing with others who drink/take drugs, we were raised in a family that drank/took drugs, to change our mood (feel we are more outgoing), push aside unpleasant memories or traumas, or to experience something different. There are many psychological, social, and biological factors that influence our use of drugs or alcohol. Drugs and alcohol produce surges in dopamine in the brain – feeling pleasure - which leads people to repeat the behavior. Over time, the brain adapts and therefore requires greater amounts of the drug/alcohol for the same ‘good feeling,’ challenging a person’s ability to manage or quit.

Alcohol overuse –

Alcohol disrupts the brain’s communication pathways, change our moods and behaviors, and impact our ability to think clearly and move with coordination.

Bing Drinking –

One in six U.S. adults binge drinks about four times a month, it is twice as common for men, more common in households with $75,000/year, and most common among people aged 18-34 years. Recent studies show that repeated episodes of binge drinking during teen years can affect the trajectory adolescent brain development, and cause deficits in social, attention, memory, and other cognitive functions. The

Alcohol use –

Chronic alcohol exposure compromises brain immune cells.

With a specialty in substance abuse, Dr. Friedland guides individuals to curb their substance abuse and live lives of which they are proud.

Anyone, regardless of class and ethnicity, can have a substance abuse problem or become an addict. Those who have difficulty delaying gratification and gauging consequences or those who are impulsive are more likely to have substance abuse problems. "The culture of drink endures because it offers so many rewards: confidence for the shy, clarity for the uncertain, solace to the wounded and lonely," wrote Pete Hamill in his memoir, "A Drinking Life" (New York Times 9/2/08). Overcoming substance abuse is a long yet fulfilling road.

Relevant Research


Heavy marijuana use has been linked to impairment in memory and attention that persist and worsen with increasing years of regular use and with initiation during adolescence. It has been linked to lower income, greater need for socioeconomic assistance, unemployment, criminal behavior and lower satisfaction with life, according to the New England Journal of Medicine, June 5, 2014.

“Chronic alcohol exposure leads to brain adaptations that shift behavior control away from an area of the brain involved in complex decision-making and toward a region associated with habit formation,” according to the National Institute of Health 8/22/13

Featured Posts
 Posts (please click on  the title)